By Tom Quiner
Hank Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s home run record the old-fashioned way: he earned it.
Unlike Mark McGuire or Barry Bonds, Mr. Aaron never used steroids. He hit an amazing 40 home runs when he was 39 years of age. He added another 42 after his fortieth birthday.
Aaron had to withstand ugly, racist threats from some neanderthals who didn’t like the idea of a black man breaking the Babe’s revered record. So, you can understand if Hank Aaron has something of a chip on his shoulder on issues of race. The 80 year old Hall of Famer said that he holds onto the nasty letters he received …
“to remind myself that we are not that far removed from when I was chasing the record. If you think that, you are fooling yourself. A lot of things have happened in this country, but we have so far to go. There’s not a whole lot that has changed.”
I’m not sure how Hank Aaron can make such a claim. Did he notice that an African-American is the president of the United States? And Barack Obama was only elected because of the white vote. He garnered ten percent more of the white vote than Walter Mondale did, and he got about the same as Bill Clinton did.
Yes, a lot has changed.
Mr. Aaron dared to compare the Republican Party to the Ku Klux Klan with this remark:
“Sure, this country has a black president, but when you look at a black president, President Obama is left with his foot stuck in the mud from all of the Republicans with the way he’s treated. The bigger difference is that back then they had hoods. Now they have neckties and starched shirts.”
What an ugly and inaccurate thing to say.
Aaron speaks for rank and file liberals who spew the “R” word as an explanation for Mr. Obama’s failed presidency. A good friend of mine, who is a wonderful human being and card-carrying liberal (yes, conservatives, liberals can be wonderful human beings!), expressed this very sentiment to me over coffee. She suggested all of Obama’s woes were the result of Republican racism.
I challenged her to prove it. You can’t just make such a broad smear without compelling, irrefutable evidence. She stuck to her guns even though she didn’t have a lick of evidence, not a single example of racism.
I voted for different candidates than Mr. Obama, and it had nothing to do with race. Here’s why I did not vote for Barack Obama.
1. He resume was thin. His ineptness at governing has validated my concern.
2. His liberal political philosophy has been tried, and failed in the past.
3. He is not forthright.
His lack of forthrightness became apparent after his election to the presidency.
For example, he criticized his predecessor for increasing the deficit by $5 trillion in eight years. Mr. Obama increased it another $5 trillion in half the time.
Obama said he wouldn’t sign any bill until it had sat on his desk at least five days. This is important on big, sprawling bills like Obamacare with lots of moving parts. Nancy Pelosi admitted as much. She said we’d have to pass the bill to find out what is in it. Sadly, the president lied. He signed it into law immediately. He has done that with other important legislation as well.
Speaking of Obamacare, he said we could keep our current policy if we wanted to. Lie.
He said we could keep our doctor. Lie.
He said premiums would drop $2500. Lie.
He said there would be no more illegal wire tapping of Americans. He promised to close Guantanamo Bay. He said he defended traditional marriage.
None of this was true. How can opposition to such dishonest politicking be characterized as racism? My question to those leveling such charges is this: how can you support such a man?
I haven’t even touched on his failed foreign policy, starting with Benghazi where he was quick to blame an American for the tragedy instead of the true perpetrators.
That’s another thing: Obama is a blamer. He blamed George W. Bush for a bad economy, even though Democrats have controlled government since 2006. He blamed the Tea Party for America’s credit downgrade. He even blamed the media for making a big deal out of the IRS scandal. Great leaders don’t blame.
Hank Aaron was a great baseball player. I am so very disappointed at his misguided need to relabel legitimate political dissent as racism.