2) After Obama's election, many white Americans stopped taking racism seriously: Over the long haul, this will be a fairly healthy development. Too many people have used racism as an all-purpose excuse for their failures in life. But, after a black man with mediocre qualifications rose all the way up to the become President of the United States, it seems natural to ask how much of an impediment race can really be in America?
Certainly racism still exists, but in many people's eyes, it's just no longer a credible excuse for failure. This change in attitude is going to be difficult for a lot of black Americans to accept and many white Americans need to be careful not to allow themselves to be fooled into thinking racism is non-existent, as opposed to rare, because of Obama's victory.
3) The race card is being played constantly: Pre-Obama, Democrats often played the race card for political advantage because it usually worked. Right or wrong, good or bad, when someone cried "racist," more often than not, he got his way.
Because of that, the temptation to play the race card proved to be just too much to resist for the Democratic Party after Obama got into office. So, despite the fact that Obama came to power promising unity, what we've gotten instead is incessant cries of racism over everything. Any effective attacks on Obama? Racism. Any opposition to his agenda? Racism. Any opposition at all to Obama? Racism.
That playing of the race card has been so ever present and so over-the-top that what was once a political trump card has been reduced to a Two-of Clubs that usually produces little more than eye rolling. That's not good for the actual victims of racism, nor is it good for the legions of Americans who are genuinely offended because they've been falsely accused of being racists.
4) Obama's exploitation of the race card: Barack Obama is playing an extremely cynical game with the race card. Although his administration has slipped up and used it a couple of times ("Henry Louis Gates" & "Nation of Cowards"), Obama has generally tried to stay away from racial issues.
However, it's also worth noting what Obama DOESN'T DO. He doesn't ask his supporters to stop crying "racism." So, everyone who opposes him politically gets smeared as a racist, while he doesn't have to personally get his hands dirty. For a cynical, sleazy, manipulative politician, it's the best of both worlds. For the rest of the country, it's an ugly game that serves the country poorly.
5) Obama is no Jackie Robinson: Because he's the first black President, Barack Obama's presidency is particularly meaningful to black Americans just as Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier meant a lot for the same reasons.
However, there is a huge difference between the two men: Jackie Robinson was genuinely talented. He ended up being Major League baseball's first Rookie of the Year. On the other hand, Obama is a bumbling, corrupt, megalomaniacal train wreck who has been a disaster at home and a weakling abroad. He can already legitimately be compared to the worst Presidents in American history -- yet, his approval rating with black Americans is still above 90%.
How healthy is it for the country to have 92% of black Americans approving of the job Obama is doing while only 42% of white Americans approve? When the gulf is that wide -- and getting wider -- what message does that send to both sides of the divide? Nothing good, I can assure you.