In The End of White America, Hua Hsu concluded his article by saying that America has come a long way and the generation of today is lucky because they are born into this era wherein the path of racism is no longer followed (2009).
The issues about Unites States being a post-racial nation started when Barack Obama ran for the presidential election and when he was proclaimed as America’s 44th president, his victory signified not only change for the country but it is also the dawn of hope for all African Americans. Some would even go so far as to say that his victory symbolizes that skin color is no longer a big deal in achieving something in the society and the time has come where people are no longer sized-up by their skin color but by their character. While this event represents one of the landmarks in history, it does not signify the white erosion or post-racism as what Hsu is implying. The fact that Obama won the election is a wonderful thing but be that as it may, this event does not tear down racial obstacles completely, it does not erase the problem of poverty and its impact on the black and brown community. The sole act of voting for Barack Obama will not convert America to paradise island (Taylor, 2008). The fact is that this country has not yet reached that place. America is not living in a post- racial era and Barack Obama’s presidential victory simply signaled a time to welcome changes, to try something new and let the chips fall where they may.
Being a post-racial society means that people do not have to live in a place where the issue of race is such a big deal. Others interpret post-racial as transcending the issue of color but the coining of the words white America is quite ironic because the term itself signifies a racial issue. If the world today would be put under the microscope, it can clearly be seen that the race issue has never be completely eradicated. While it is true that Obama’s presidency was nothing but a dream centuries ago, the fact that it is a reality today does not mean that America has gone post racial. Hsu posed a question about what post- racial means. Does this mean that society has gotten completely over racial discrimination or does it simply mean that race is not significant in identifying ones self (2009)?
Hsu laid down some details to justify his theory that whiteness is no longer a requirement to enter high positions in office. The most classic example would be Barack Obama but then he went on further in the article by posing a question if anybody will try to preserve White America. Several people also made a comment that white people have a feeling that the control is up for grabs. With whats happening in the society lately, these white people feel the pressure because they used to be in control but today they feel that it is slowly slipping away from them (Hsu, 2009). The fact that white people are used to feeling control signifies racism in all aspects. If America is entering a post racist era, control would no longer become an issue and the fact that people of color are occupying high places in the society should not bother anyone at all.
Placing the word “post” before another word implies that it is a past event and as sad as it is to admit; America has not yet reached that place. If Hsu were only correct, racism would be completely in the past. A person’s race is part of his identity and no matter what people say, it is and will always be essential in knowing who the person is. Race does not define a person’s whole identity but a part of it will always be attributed to his roots. The beauty of a person’s cultural and national heritage is significant in understanding ones self.
If United States is already in a post-racial state, everybody would welcome everybody regardless of the race. This would be an amazing thing if only it were true. Even President Obama has admitted that one man alone does not have the power to eradicate this problem. It is going to take a lot more than a Black man in the White House to end racism; this is not a one-man job but a task for everyone. The fact that a man of color is the most powerful man in America today may not mean post-racism but this definitely is a start. His winning the presidential election is essential for substantive reasons. Finally, any person with color specially African Americans can tell their children that they too can dream of becoming a President. Several incidents that points away from the direction of post racism are still rampant in the United States. Every now and then, it can be heard from the news that a black man was involved in police shootings and it cannot be denied that the tendency of being flagged down and being suspected of something illegal is more prevalent in the black community than anywhere else.
The terms White America and Black Community are not mere terms of association but these are words that will always be associated with racial issues. To say that United States has become post-racial would be too idealistic given the current situation. Obama’s victory may be celebrated by people of color worldwide but it certainly is going to take a lot more than that for America to start shifting to the post racial direction. To declare that America is past the issue of racism would be to disregard the extra mile that everybody has yet to travel in order to transform this country into a place where equality dwells regardless of the people’s race (Thomas, 2008). It has not yet arrived but it is safe to say that one day, it will come to America and this is the little bit of something that people must hold on to.
Hsu, H. 2009.The End of White America. The Atlantic. Retrieved May 26, 2009 from http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200901/end-of-whiteness
Taylor, A. 2008. Obama and the Beloved Community: Are We There Yet?. Multiply. Retrieved May 27, 2009 from http://smudge77.multiply.com/journal/item/195
Thomas. A. 2008. Does Barack Obama’s Victory Herald a Post-Racial America?. Race Wire. Retrieved May 27, 2009 from http://www.racewire.org/archives/2008/12/does_barack_obamas_victory_her_1.html