Bill Clinton was not the first black president

During the presidential debate on Jan. 15 between Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and John Edwards, it appeared the racial rhetoric had been put to rest and a truce was called. Oh, but it didn’t last long. The three candidates met again for a debate co-sponsored by CNN and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute on the national holiday celebrating the birthday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Former president Bill Clinton made the rounds to every black radio show in the country.

At times I forget who really is running for president. Even Senator Obama alluded to this. Spike Lee’s movie “Bamboozle” should have starred Hillary and Bill. Maybe Spike’s next movie can be “Bill Clinton’s Third Unofficial Run for the Presidency,” or “Clinton’s Birth of a Nation.”

President Clinton found himself on the “black hot seat” after referring to some of Senator Obama’s campaign dialogue as a “fairytale.” Oops, big mistake Bill. This reminded people of other racial slips that occurred during his presidency. An apology for slavery he promised, the Telecom Act of 1996 that resulted in an almost 50 percent loss of black-owned media in one year, welfare reform, more black men going to jail, and who can forget his remarks about rapper Sister Souljah during his first campaign. He accused her of hatred because she called on blacks to stop destroying their property and to turn their efforts to the white power brokers.

During Clinton’s first campaign he traveled back to Arkansas to oversee the execution of Rickey Ray Rector who was so mentally ill that while being escorted to his execution he told guards he would eat his pecan pie when he returned. Black folks also have not forgotten how he abandoned Lanie Granier and Jocelyn Elders, former U.S. surgeon generals.

During King celebrations in Atlanta on Jan. 21, Mayor Shirley Franklin stated to President Clinton, who was seated in the front row about 20 feet away at Ebenezer Baptist Church, that the country is on the “cusp of turning the impossible into reality. Yes this is reality, not fantasy or fairy tales.”

And it wasn’t a fairy tale that while President Clinton was seated at Ebenezer Church, the KKK was holding a protest in Jena, La.

I’ve tried to figure out for some time what it is with black folks and Bill Clinton? I would hate to think playing the saxophone has rocked the black community to sleep. As we watch this presidential campaign unfold it is crystal clear that when the going gets tough, Bill Clinton gets whiter. Yes indeed, Bill and Hillary Clinton love black folks as long as they obey and do what they are told. The nerve of Senator Obama-actually making a serious run for the presidency. The Clintons had planned on a cake walk and underestimated Obama.

It appears to me that the Clintons’ true colors are showing and African Americans are starting to rethink this love affair. Maybe “slick Willie” isn’t as slick as he thinks.

Delores McCain
Forest Park

Editor’s note: Delores McCain is an employee of Wednesday Journal Inc., the parent company of the Forest Park Review.