Thursday, July 9, 2009

Obama Did Not End Racism After All

Looks like my hometown is hitting the national news for the wrong reason: racism. A swim club in Huntingdon Valley, PA apparently terminated a deal with a day camp after the camp's first appearance at the pool. The pool club claims it is about numbers, but the fact that the kids were African-American is suggestive, particularly after the President of the club referred to the impact of the kids on the atmosphere and complexion of the club.

To be clear, though, we should not find it surprising that a private club would engage in racist behavior--it is appalling but not shocking. At how many golf clubs could Tiger Woods play if he was simply Eldrick Woods?

The election of Obama was a huge step, but we are not there yet. Indeed, his election is linked to increased activism/recruitment by white supremacists. The good news is that other actors in the Philly area are stepping in, to punish the club and provide an alternative place for the kids to swim. Still, it is sad that the kids have to learn a hard lesson, one that they have probably learned before.

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