May 25, 2013
Economy Trumps Race in Ohio
Posted on Oct 15, 2008
Botts said, “I’m not really sure how I feel about Obama. I see him more as a president than McCain. But I’m not really sure. A lot of people are skeptical of him. Obama seems like he would be better for the United States, but I wish Hillary had stayed.”
I didn’t ask them about race. I thought it would be stupid and obvious, a journalistic hack question. They were friends, sitting around talking. What was there to ask?
After talking to them, I thought about what I had felt since I started writing about this campaign many months ago: The media, with the most well-known pundits and reporters in middle age or on the verge of it, see race through an outmoded prism. The country is changing.
Two weeks ago, I got an explanation of how it is changing from Martin Johnson, a professor at the University of California at Riverside, who conducts public opinion polls. His campus, like the rest of California and much of the rest of America, is a multiethnic place, with Latinos, Asians, whites and African-Americans.
Of course you can’t. America is too complicated. Spurred by the worst economic collapse since the 1930s, we may just put that old-fashioned paradigm behind us.
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