I’m sure you’ve all seen this by now, the Randy Newman video of his new song, “I’m Dreaming of a White President.”
My son loves Randy Newman. ”Short people got, no reason,” and “Let’s drop the big one,” and all that. He was one of those kids who got irony at an early age. A kid who knew a little too much about what was really going on in all of those Seinfeld and Simpsons episodes he watched every evening before supper. I remember being worried (really worried) about him when he decided to go to college in Kentucky, and major in Political Science. I grew up, after all, in the town of Rush Limbaugh. But I needn’t worry. My son, unlike me, was brave, steadfast, secure, outspoken. He held his ground.
Still, I remember the first time he called during the last presidential campaign season, in 2008. ”I was walking to class today,” he said, “and somebody’s hung an effigy of Barack Obama from a tree. Who does that?”
Go ahead. Imagine this conversation.
And now here we are. 2012.
About a month ago, I got into an phone argument with my favorite aunt. She was going down the road that Mr. Obama is a Muslim terrorist (born in Africa) who has found his way into our White House for evil deeds, as predicted in The Bible. Then there was, “It’s called the White House for a reason,” followed by a hahahaha and I remember just sitting there, wondering if anyone even noticed my response of non-response.
Randy Newman sings “I’m Dreaming of a White President.” I wish I had the words and tools to respond better, hold my ground better. Hell, I can’t even seem to say what I want to say in this post.
I know I’m not the only one in the country having these conversations. How do you talk to someone who really just wants a white president? What are the words?