Inauguration Day Open Thread

Emmy -- January 20th, 2009

Post your thoughts, feelings, and hopes for the next four years.

89 Responses to “Inauguration Day Open Thread”

  1. Barnabas says:

    I admit that racism still exists. I however do not believe that black people are the most offended by this social misconduct. Racism against all races occurs in our country depending on where you are, including against white people.
    There are many kinds of discrimination and I believe it has less to do with color and more to do with social status. I know racist people, and there not all white.
    This is a new day, and the focus needs to be taken off of the problem and shifted towards the sloution. We must ackowledge the problem as it exists in each of our own lives and face it with boldness.
    Whatever criteria we make instant judgements about, needs to be challenged. If you judge by beauty, job, weight, religion, education or any other class then you still have some work to do.

  2. Draegn88 says:

    White Europeans account for what? 9% of the world’s population? Yet only White Europeans are expected to be multicultural, practice diversity, for, these things are only practiced in Europe and countries founded from former European colonies.

    Whites are blamed for the evils of the world, are expected to solve the problems of the world, and are expected to provide for the world.

    Is this what “White Privilege” is? For some believe (as the University of Delaware tried to make policy) that only whites can be racist.

    And what of Joseph Lowery? “… help us work for that day when black will not be asked to give back, when brown can stick around, when yellow will be mellow, when the red man can get ahead, man, and when white will embrace what is right.”

    Why must a black constantly play the race card? You have your black president, your one, your change, so stop living in the 1950s or in some cases 1850s and move ahead towards this new bright future that has been promised.

  3. Breslau says:

    Well, some of the predominantly white countries are the developed and powerful nations of the world. This doesn’t make them “white nations,” though. France has plenty of blacks and Arabs, and the U.S. and U.K. have people from all over the world. Nonetheless, these countries affect the weaker ones way more than the weaker ones affect us. In this globalized economy, the West is Africa’s main economic outlet, for example. So when our banks fail because of poor regulations here, it affects those nations even worse. In this sense, we are somewhat–note somewhat–responsible. I’m not too sure of the notion that people just blame whites for that. Anyway, as industrial nations that have many wealth citizens and very much brain power, we are very much equipped to help the developing world. Really, it’s in their interest, and down the road, in ours. They’re not looking for whites to provide for them; they just want the richer, more powerful nations to provide for them. It probably is best to use our power benevolently, otherwise, people lash out at us, like many in the Middle East have. I’m not saying whites are at fault or should care for everybody. It is the responsibility of developed countries such as the U.S, whether said country’s citizens are white, black, or anything else.

    Concerning Joseph Lowery: as I understand it, “playing the race card” has a negative connotation. In that sense, I don’t think Lowery was playing the race card. I think that he wanted to call for national racial reconciliation while he had the biggest stage in the world: the 2009 United States presidential inauguration, where U.S. race relations have perhaps never looked better. After all, the man, no doubt with his age, suffered some serious misgivings at the hands of white Americans–in the name of white America. I can certainly understand why he’d want to get the message out at this time. He probably does not want that era to ever occur in a free country such as this again. He’s certainly looking past all that, not going back to it.

  4. When Joseph Lowery was a young man he would have heard, as did I, this chant, he may have even said it with a deep sense of irony:

    If you’re black, get back.
    If you’re brown, stick around.
    If you’re yellow, you’re mellow.
    If you’re white, you’re alright!

    It shouldn’t surprise anyone that White supremacists don’t understand the irony, it is a side effect of a retarded historical perspective.

  5. Draegn88 says:

    Breslau, why should the US help the third world, when we have homeless, hungry and illiterate citizens within our borders? Shouldn’t we help our own people first, before being the grocery store, hospital, and policeman of the world?

    The help we do give to the world is not equally distributed, perhaps this is why certain groups of people dispise us so.

  6. Emmy says:

    I’m not crazy, Draegn only shows up on threads where race could come up right? ;)

  7. Breslau says:

    Concerning your first paragraph: I see your point. And I agree that we should help people in our own country as well. That’s why I’m supportive of social programs and the like. However, if we were to invest all our resources in providing care for only citizens of this country, that would alienate us and make us appear selfish/protectionist and isolationist. I think that the globalized economy does not allow us to be the former, and the lessons of World War II do not allow us to be the former. I certainly don’t think that poor Americans deserve less because our country is quite wealthy, but it’s more responsible for us to tackle the greater problem (world poverty) rather than try to tackle a lesser problem first and foremost (American poverty) just so we can lower a percentage of needy people just to make us feel like we accomplished something larger than it actually was.

    Concerning your second one: Definitely true. Our assistance is often given to countries (whose rulers do not always fall in line with humans rights, rule of law, and other values that American diplomacy should focus more on in political development in places such as Iraq and Afghanistan) simply for their resources (not just limited to oil) or because they are the enemies of our enemies. I believe that we should focus less on resource-rich countries and more on the countries that truly need economic and political help. I kind of doubt, though, that will occur very much in Obama’s administration or any in the near future, for that matter. But we can still hope. We’ve yet to see.

  8. zen says:

    I’m inclined to think that a certain amount of prejudice is at play when one chooses to inaccurately quote Lowery in such a manner. Try “black will not be asked to GET back,” not “GIVE back.”
    The presumption made is quite telling.

  9. Brooke says:

    Yeah, racism is definitely not dead. My brother just came up with a doozy he posted on his Facebook status. :-/ Gee, I’m so proud.

  10. JGFitzgerald says:


    I believe DraegnHH probably has some sort of alert set up, so that he gets an IM whenever the word “race” is posted. As a result, he only comments on ethnicity and NASCAR.

  11. Draegn88 says:

    I see that Joey has been hitting the magic 8 ball again.

    BTW NASCAR and country music (insert colourful metaphor)

  12. Renee says:

    I’m just going to add my responses to things here as I read the thread…

    Barnabas said “Whatever criteria we make instant judgements about, needs to be challenged. If you judge by beauty, job, weight, religion, education or any other class then you still have some work to do.”
    -I can agree with you that the issues we have with being judgmental and prejudice extends beyond race.

    Draegn88 said “You have your black president, your one, your change, so stop living in the 1950s or in some cases 1850s and move ahead towards this new bright future that has been promised.”
    -I don’t think it’s fair to say “all you’ve ever wanted is a black president, so there, you got it” – there are still issues left to overcome in everyday life. P.S. He’s YOUR president, too.

    Draegn88 said “Breslau, why should the US help the third world, when we have homeless, hungry and illiterate citizens within our borders? Shouldn’t we help our own people first, before being the grocery store, hospital, and policeman of the world?”
    -Yes, you can say we should look out for ‘our own’ first in a political sense, and it does bother me that people could be suffering within the borders of the USA. But why would that prevent us from helping people in other countries that desperately need food, medications, etc.? Honestly, we have enough wealth, power and resources in this country to help everyone here AND also give some assistance to people in other countries that desperately need it – even if that assistance is just making sure the people in power there aren’t corrupt and keeping their population in poverty or preventing the transport of medicine to refugee camps, for instance.

    Emmy, you’re definitely right about Draegn88 only showing up on threads where race can be raised as a topic. I don’t know whether he’s someone that only posts as Draegn88 when he’s commenting on race, so as not to associate the comments with another online identity, or if he only pays attention to discussions on blogs where he can try to make some offhanded comments about a racial issue and get everyone riled up.

    I don’t know why he keeps insisting on posting these things here on hburgnews, except to try to “ruffle feathers”, since I don’t know of anyone agreeing with him in recent memory.

    But hey, everyone in the USA has free speech.

    I for one can’t wait until Obama does some really great presidential things so I can send back all of the emails my family members were sending out when they were all afraid of a black man that they also wrongly thought was muslim getting elected into office. I’m pretty confident that Obama will make all of the naysayers eat their words through his actions.

    After hearing Obama’s press conference on the radio today where he froze his staff’s salaries, set up strict ethical rules for former or future lobbyists, and new standards for government transparency (basically reversing a lot of policies the Bush administration had, and setting new precendents no administration has ever been bold enough to set), I think he’s already off to a great start.

  13. Renee says:

    Brooke, now you made me really curious what your brother said!

  14. Emmy says:

    I saw that earlier Cook. Glad they did it again just in case.

  15. Brooke says:

    Oh, he made some comment about how Obama was not, nor would he ever be his president and could kiss his “white ass.” Being his big sister, I didn’t let him get away with it. LOL

  16. Draegn88 says:

    Renee, if Obama does something “good” I will be fair and give credit where credit is good. However, if he screws up, then I expect those who voted for him to acknowledge his errors and not try to shift blame elsewhere.

    Renee, I read over this blog daily. Most things either have no interest to me, do not require a response, or I see no point in it. Thanh posts things to do, that’s great. Brent posts film reviews great. Jeremy acted in his typical hypocritical manner on the jogger killed thread. Yet posting about his hypocrisy will not anything.

  17. T says:

    Re: Comment from Emmy
    Time: January 20, 2009, 12:55 pm

    “Can someone explain why the outgoing President leaves right after the swearing in?”

    In this case, to avoid the possible inbound thousands of airborne shoes.

  18. Hypocrisy means “pretending to have qualities or beliefs that you do not really have”. In what way do you believe I was acting in a hypocritical manner on the thread about the jogger?

    And were you, by any chance, one of the people who had rushed to judgment the day before in assuming it was probably an undocumented, unlicensed Hispanic driver who had committed the hit and run? THAT’S why I was interested in trying to establish the identity of the arrested suspect as quickly as possible.

  19. seth says:

    is barrack our first african american president?

    this is a few days old, but i thought it was kind of fun.

  20. Speaking of cool links, I will be watching the Obameter to see how many of the 500+ campaign promises made by Obama get fulfilled.

  21. eso says:

    I was not/am not that impressed with what policy specifics Obama did supply in the election run up, didn’t think everything is going to be OK when he takes over, and basically think he is just another politician.
    However, having said that, I have to say his inauguration was a class act. From the train ride which was kinda risky security wise, to reaching out to everybody with his speakers and some of his language, to his march on Pennsylvania avenue so his fans could their star -also security risky.
    Again in all honesty, I expected a better speech from him. More soaring and eloquent. Most people say he had serious issues to confront, etc. But I expected more of the raw charisma that got him elected.

  22. Draegn88 says:


    “And were you, by any chance, one of the people who had rushed to judgment the day before in assuming it was probably an undocumented, unlicensed Hispanic driver who had committed the hit and run? THAT’S why I was interested in trying to establish the identity of the arrested suspect as quickly as possible.”

    You are a known ILLEGAL ALIEN apologist. If the driver had had a Spanish name, you would not have went digging for her facebook in order to defame and vilify her by posting links to her photos. Instead you would have pleaded for people to be understanding and to not blame the hispanic community.

    That is your hypocrisy. You, who sit back and treat hispanics differently than everyone else. Yet you want to sit there and call White people racists when they complain about non-Whites.


    A prediction: within 6 months to a year a prominant black leader will call Obama an Uncle Tom who has not done enough for the black community.

  23. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    So what’s your answer to the question, Draegn?

  24. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    You know, if people had been clamoring for recriminations against the alcohol-fueled, irresponsible and illegally driving white community, I think I would have “pleaded for people to be understanding and not to blame the [white] community”. As it was, without one shred of evidence, people like yourself were quick to place the blame on undocumented immigrants.

  25. zen says:


    I think I’ll just add a positive, thread-related comment to every non-related comment that keeps this thread slinking on.

    I realize that Obama has only been in office for a couple of days, and it’s certainly not all his doing, yet there seems to be a bounce to the interesting times in which we live.
    Am I wrong? Am I wrong?

  26. Draegn88 says:

    Jeremy, care to quote whatever comment it is you think I made?

    But to answer your question, my first thought when hearing of the accident on the radio (and hearing the location) was to say “Another idiot student who didn’t use the crosswalk”. Seriously, how many students get hit on that particular stretch of road every year?

  27. Emmy says:

    No Zen, you are not wrong.

  28. zen says:

    Is it instinct is to diminish, disparage, denigrate in light of such a tragic event? Or is it taught and learned? Who would ever teach such a thing? Who would ever seek to learn that?
    A more reasonable first thought might be of the tragic nature of the event, and the life lost.

  29. zen says:

    Oh yeah…

    The Fourty-Fourth First Family has a refreshing, progressive, fun spirit.

  30. JGFitzgerald says:

    Is this thread draggin’ on too long? Will it reach 88 comments? To quote Tennyson, “The world wonders.”

  31. Renee says:

    Jeremy, thanks for the Obamameter link, I think that’s a neat tool that we should apply to all politicians – keeping people accountable for what they stated while campaigning.

    zen, eso – I enjoyed reading your recent comments.

  32. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    QED on vilifying an entire population because of the actions of a few. Where was the “Another drunk white girl” headline a few weeks ago? This is blatant racism, done because our local climate makes it okay to make these kinds of outrageous statements.

  33. zen says:

    He that scatters thorns, let him not go barefoot.
    Glass houses and stone throwing, and such.
    That editorial is hideous.

    I find comfort in a commander-in-chief that exudes such a tone of calmness and thoughtfulness.

  34. Renee says:

    OMG, the DNR editorials sicken me so often. They encourage me not to buy the paper, especially since the author’s name is never listed, so it seems the “editorial” article is meant to represent the entire staff’s opinion.

  35. David Miller says:

    Join me (a native to the land) in refusing to accept this form of discourse (I’m being incredibly generous). This is unacceptable. Hate mongers beware. Your time is up. We no longer accept you diatribes nor do we accept you as functional members of our society. You are officially the illegal aliens amongst us! Just as the n word has been pried out of standard discourse, so to shall you be weeded out because of your hatred of your fellow man. If you are a church going citizen, I recommend that you redouble your prayers, for your own soul.

  36. Brooke says:

    Here, here, David! I wholeheartedly agree.

  37. Tom Byrd is an alien, he lives in Winchester. Can the City of Harrisonburg revoke the business license of the Daily News Record? Or perhaps a surcharge could be levied to compensate for the damage Byrd’s goons do to the good name of the City. Harrisonburg deserves better than this. This is the paper of record for Hburg and Rockingham.

  38. marthafines says:

    Merry Christmas to all… and to all a good night.

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