Sadly, the Shrubtown editorial cartoon to which Ed McGee and Michael Lennox objected hits the nail on the head. [Cartoon is disgusting, Viewpoints, Sept. 23] The members of Congress who oppose the administration’s health care reform initiative are pretty much in the pockets of the insurance and pharmaceutical industries – there’s just no denying that. And if you take the time to read the comments posted online at sites of the Washington Post, New York Times, Tribune and Sun-Times, you’ll see the underlying current of racial bigotry throughout the opposition to the administration’s proposals.

Every day, President Obama receives 10 times the number of death threats that President Bush received. While there are a great many people opposing health care reform whose motives are pure and free of racism and racial bigotry, I have little doubt that many of the opponents see a positive correlation with extreme racial bigotry. It doesn’t matter what President Obama does or what legislation he seeks, they just criticize him for breathing.

For example, he’ll be damned if he goes to Copenhagen and damned if he doesn’t. The bottom line for many in opposition to him is race. The bottom line is that many of his opponents don’t want their children going to school with African Americans. They don’t want African Americans living in their neighborhoods. And they damn well don’t want an African American in the White House unless he’s a servant.

Sadly, racial bigotry is at the heart of so much of the opposition to President Obama’s legislative initiatives, and Shrubtown accurately depicted the reality we face in an America that still has a long way to go to overcome the vestiges of slavery.

Daniel Lauber
River Forest

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