Obama Doesn't Fulfill Martin Luther King's Dream

As we approached the 2008 presidential election, mention was made again and again of how Obama's election would be "the fulfillment of Martin Luther King Jr.'s ‘I have a Dream' speech." Representative John Lewis (D-GA) said just that on FoxNews on August 28, 2008, the 45th anniversary of King's famous speech. And Obama did his part to bolster this theory by accepting the Democratic nomination on August 28 -- the very day on which King gave his speech. He then provided news outlets with photo-op after photo-op on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial just days before his inauguration -- the very steps on which King gave his speech. However, Obama's election doesn't fulfill King's speech because it doesn't fulfill King's dream.

When King gave that famous speech in 1963 he said: "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." King looked forward to a day when the first question asked wouldn't be "What color are you?" but rather "What qualifications do you have?" Yet today, even with the election of Obama, it is obvious that the Democratic Party -- the very party that purports to be King's standard-bearer -- has traded this colorblind standard for one rooted in race over substance. And the mainstream media is right there with them. As Bernard Goldberg said in his latest book on the love affair between Obama and the media, "Mainstream journalists always root for the Democrat," but Obama was especially attractive to them because of "his personal charisma, his liberalism, and of course, the fact that he is black." Goldberg even summed up the mainstream media's pre-election position on Obama this way: "We need the black guy to win because he's black."

Thus, once Obama was elected, mainstream media outlets of almost every shape and size gleefully reported that we'd elected our "first African-American President." And while there's nothing wrong with noticing that Obama is black, there is certainly something wrong with emphasizing his skin color over his qualifications, or at least Martin Luther King Jr. would have thought so. For example, as early as December 7, 2007, Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone magazine anticipated Obama's victory and noted that "it would be great to have a black president. It would be great for kids to see. It would be a nice mind shift."

Am I the only person who asks "why" when they read this? Why would a president of a particular color necessarily be great for kids to see, whether that color is black, yellow, red, or white? And how does electing a black president represent "a nice mind shift" if the shift is from a president who believed in personal liberty (George W. Bush) to one who believes in government control over so many facets of life (Barack Obama)?