Obama's Problem, He Happens to Be Black

02/28/2008 06:14 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Hispanic community leader Adelfa Callejo, 84, said yesterday that Barack Obama would have trouble gaining Latino support because Black politicians have done little for Hispanics and Obama "simply has a problem that he happens to be Black" (KTVT-TV).


Hillary Clinton expressed outrage and - stealing a line from Obama - said she "denounces and rejects" such words.

What a load of balderdash. No one is telling the obvious truth in this campaign.

Shock, Shock, Shock: Blacks are voting for Obama because he is Black (when Bill hints at that, it's considered outrageous and racist).

Newsflash: Women are voting for Hillary ... because she is a woman. Wow!

If Obama were White, he wouldn't be where he is today. There would be no magical story of a multi-racial background that we all applaud. That's OK. We all gotta use what we got. McCain is a war hero; Bush was the silver spoon son of a President.

Question of the Day: Will the Woman's Card trump the Race Card?

Being Black has made Obama bulletproof in the media, which bodes well for the Democrats in the fall. There are also three million bigots out there who will never vote for a Black man. And many other White voters who will vote for a Black, especially because he is such a historical breakthrough. I don't think Callejo is a bigot; merely repeating time-honored political voting truths and patterns doesn't deserve such abuse.

Sergio Bendixen, one of Clinton's pollsters, who specializes in the Hispanic vote, told The New Yorker, "In all honesty, the Hispanic vote is extremely important to the Clinton campaign, and the polls have shown that even though she was slipping with women in Iowa and blacks in South Carolina, she was not slipping with Hispanics."

But what world are we living in when we sanctimoniously try to deny the most obvious political truths?

Latinos and Blacks have not always had the same interests or goals.

Mrs. Callejo - who gets a little pass at saying such palpable truths because she is so old, like the Jester in Shakespearian plays - told The Dallas Morning News that she was trying to convey feelings expressed to her by some Hispanic voters about long-running Black-Latino tensions in the Dallas area.

"I have been told by a lot of people that they did not trust him because he is black," she said. "They don't trust him because of the local people. But that is minor, compared to his [Mr. Obama's] lack of experience. The most important thing is that there is no track record with him with Hispanics. I don't think it is fair that that feeling exists."

Sometimes Latinos have supported Blacks - Mayor David Dinkins and Mayor Tom Bradley - ..... and sometimes they have not.

What do you expect? In many cases, Blacks and Latinos are each struggling to make their way up the economic ladder and fighting for a piece of the political pie.