GoTellMama! > Why OBAMA > Eugene Robinson
SAIC Auditorium
November, 6 2008
Artist Talk with Ray Noland
Talk at 6PM.
280 South Columbus Drive

July, 22 2008
Gonna be one of the judges for the Obama Car Art Contest by INFECTIOUS. Get yourself tight and submit a design!

June, 22 2008
Coast-to-Coast poster is back! Now hand screen-printed by CRO in red and a limited number in blue.

Washington D.C.
March, 06 2008
The National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution has also requested a set of prints. Will be taking a short trip to D.C. to hand deliver the goods.

History is Now
Feb, 28 2008
The Print and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. has requested a set of posters for the national collection. GoTellMama! is officially part of history. Woot!

Huge Success!
Feb, 09 2008
Wow! opening night of the GTM show was absolutely phenomenal! Thanks to everyone that made it out and has helped this to continue. Looks like we will be taking the show on the road in 2008. We are gonna push this all the way to the convention in August.

Wake-up Call
Jan, 09 2008
The loss in New Hampshire was a good ego check for Obama and his supporters. This thing is NOT over. We have much work to do.

Obama Wins Iowa!
Jan, 03 2008
How big is this?! 38% IN IOWA! From a Dream to a Goal.

Thank You
Dec, 22 2007
Thanks to everyone that braved the cold and came out to the GoTellMama! Party. We raised $1000 which was donated to the Barack Obama campaign. Get ready for the GoTellMama! Art Show coming February 8-10.

Nov, 28 2007
GoTellMama!, Good, Bad, U.S. and Speaking to U.S. videos now downloadable.

Nov, 27 2007
Invited onto to talk about GoTellMama! and getting Barack Obama elected.

GoTellMama! T-shirts
Oct, 7 2007
Thanks to Mike and everyone at Propaganda we now have three t-shirt designs available. Show support in real style!

GoTellMama! Posters
Sept, 20 2007
The Go Tell Mama! screen-printed posters have just arrived. Thanks to the handy work from my friend over at Crosshair. You requested it - so we finally produced a limited edition of these handsome 4-color hand-screened posters.

It's Official...
Sept, 20 2007
CRO was commissioned by the Obama campaign to design an official poster for its up-coming NYC rally. The rally looks to be building as one of the largest Obama rallys to date. Be on the look-out for promotion and posters around the city.

They Once Said
July, 31 2007
Our fifth video in the series. We created this for MSNBC's Hardball Campaign Ad Challenge contest that doesn't really seem to be a 'real' contest. I guess if it's not made with powerpoint, an attack ad or straight-up T&A, it's not worth showing.

Last update:
December 01. 2010 02:41:42

Eugene Robinson

The Washington Post - Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Obama and the 'They' Sayers
By Eugene Robinson

Are white Americans really, truly prepared to elect an African American president? Seriously, is a nation with such a long and shameful history of brutal slavery, Jim Crow segregation and persistent racism actually going to put a black man in the White House?

One of Barack Obama's principal tasks in the coming months may be convincing African American voters that this whole phenomenon -- a black candidate with a well-financed campaign, proven crossover appeal and a real chance to win -- isn't just another cruel illusion.

I hear from African Americans who are excited about Obama's candidacy but who suspect that somehow, when push comes to shove, "they" won't let him win. It's unclear who "they" might be -- white voters, the "power structure," the alignment of the stars -- and it's unclear how "they" are going to thwart Obama's ambition. The point is that, somehow, he'll be denied.

This anecdotal evidence finds some empirical support in the polls, although it's far from definitive. A recent CNN poll of Democrats in South Carolina -- a crucial, early-primary state where African Americans will cast about half the Democratic votes -- showed Hillary Clinton leading Obama by a bigger margin among blacks than among whites. And while white respondents thought Clinton had only a slightly better chance of winning the 2008 general election than Obama, blacks who were polled thought Clinton was fully twice as likely to beat a generic Republican opponent.

The CNN poll's sample of black voters was so small, and its margin of error so great, that it's impossible to draw firm conclusions. For that matter, it would be a mistake to take any of these early polls too seriously. But isn't Obama at least a bit concerned that black voters might succumb to a kind of historical fatalism about how race works in America?

"What I see is a lot of press fascination with a black candidate who does not yet have 100 percent of the African American vote," Obama said yesterday in a telephone interview. "It's fascinating to me that people would expect that somehow I would be getting unanimous black support at this stage of the campaign, when probably only about 50 percent of black voters know much about me at all."

Obama pointed out that "black folks have known the Clintons for a long time." He also noted that when he ran for the U.S. Senate, his poll numbers among African Americans started low but later went stratospheric as voters got to know him.

Still, the Obama campaign recognizes the importance of South Carolina as the first primary state with a substantial African American electorate. A win there could resonate in other states where the black vote will be a key factor in the Democratic primary. A bad loss in South Carolina would resonate, too -- not in a good way, from Obama's point of view.

Last week, the Obama campaign began running a new ad on 36 black-oriented radio stations in South Carolina. Its two themes: "We have more work to do" and "It's Barack Obama time."

Asked about fatalism or resignation among black voters, Obama said, "I'm sure there's some of that going on. The way to solve that problem is to win."

That I reached Obama in the midst of a campaign swing through Iowa was no accident. "If I do well in Iowa, and if I do well in New Hampshire . . . then by the time we get to South Carolina, I think we will have dispelled the notion that somehow whites won't vote for African Americans."

The dispelling of notions seems to be a specialty of Obama's -- or maybe it's just his fate in life. Last week, in his fight with Clinton over whether a president should meet with foreign leaders who are adversaries in addition to those who are friends, Obama dispelled the questionable notion that a politician who learned his craft in rough-and-tumble Chicago, where Marquess of Queensberry rules do not apply, could somehow have failed to learn how to take or deliver a punch.

"That was a fun debate . . . an important, substantive debate," he told me, before sticking in another jab about how " 'experience' means reciting the conventional wisdom in Washington . . . that got us into the Iraq war."

Obama spent weeks dispelling the notion, held by some in the national media, that he somehow isn't "black enough." He still gets asked that question, but by now he has mostly put the matter of his racial identity to rest. As he knew all along, he's black.

Now he has to dispel the notion that because he's black, somehow "they" will slap him down.

*This piece came out the same day as we submitted or video 'They Once Said' to the MSNBC campaign ad challenge. Mr. Robinson is a guest analyst on MSNBC frequently. Strange?

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