I try, and occasionally fail, to be nonpartisan on this blog. This may be one of those moments, and I think it’s worth it as an illustration of white privilege.
If you watched the first Presidential debate and then the second, you’ve witnessed it: Mitt Romney is embodying white privilege in his dismissal of the debate protocols, of the moderators, and, of course, of his debate opponent President Obama, insisting on getting “his turn” when he has already had it, and when protocol dictates that the candidates alternate as first or last voice on each question or segment of the debate.
You might be saying, well, isn’t Obama also going over his time limits?
Yes, this time around.
What constrained Obama especially in the first debate and what separates him from Romney, and even the Vice Presidential candidates, is that he is the only debater who needs to worry about being labeled an ABM: an Angry Black Man. Sure, there are limits for white men (see Howard Dean’s implosion in 2008). But the latitude for black (and, in this case, multiracial) men is much less.
And so as we watch these debates, it’s critical to remember that we are not post-racial. The proof is on stage right in front of us.