Obama’s Racial Counter-Revolution and the Disappointment of Ta-Nahesi Coates

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Photo by Marc Nozell | CC BY 2.0

Photo by Marc Nozell | CC BY 2.0

What’s the deal with the liberal Black novelist, political commentator, and occasional Barack Obama courtier Ta-Nahesi Coates? Look at this passage from an interview he did three weeks ago, with the white Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) member and “Public” Broadcasting System “NewsHour” host Judy Woodruff:

Judy Woodruff, CFR and PBS:One of the things you write [in The Atlantic – P.S.]  is that — it has to do with the election of Donald Trump being the price that has to be paid for having Barack Obama as president. What did you mean by that?”

Ta-Nahesi Coates, The Atlantic: “Well, I meant that if having an African-American president was as revolutionary as we claim it was, that there’d probably be some sort of backlash or some sort of counter…a great deal of Barack Obama’s power is symbolic and is in the symbolism in what it communicates to African-Americans. … [the existence of a Black president] communicated great… power to African-Americans…. But that also communicate[d] things to other people also, who may not necessarily be so happy about that kind of progress, you know, who have all sorts of feelings wrapped up in that, and so I think a lot of that culminated in the election of president-elect [Trump].”

“Revolutionary?” I wonder if Coates caught the New York Times’ memorable report on widespread Black non-voting in Milwaukee (the most populous state in the contested state of Wisconsin)…

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