Obama doesn't do race questions

In recent weeks people of color have started to question presumptive Democratic Presidential nominee Barack Obama's commitment to issues that concern them.

From Indian Country Today:

CHICAGO - Tom Arviso Jr., publisher of the Navajo Times, was primed and
pumped to ask Sen. Barack Obama a question during the presumptive Democratic
candidate's appearance at the 2008 UNITY: Journalists of Color convention July
26. He had been working for months with the Native American Journalists
Association to have his voice heard.

But at the last minute, UNITY organizers and CNN producers, who
televised the event, cut Arviso from the lineup. He was told that his question
could not fit into the senator's schedule. The newsman specifically wanted to
know how the candidate would help tribes to become more self-sustaining. Arviso
said the change was made ''basically at the request of the Obama camp,''
according to information he received from NAJA leaders. '

'I was quite disappointed,'' said Arviso, who ultimately left the
convention early in a sort of protest. ''What happened in Chicago, it just
didn't look like it was run as professionally as it could have been - and, I
think, a lot of that had to do with Obama's campaign. ... As journalists, we
don't like to be told ahead of time what we're able to ask and what we're
limited to. It boils down to a freedom of the press issue.''

The journalist has brought something up that has been festering in the campaign for a while. How does Obama deal with the "race questions" without alienating his white voters?

Then, there was this other incident at the National Urban League convention last week, where a group from the Uhuru Movement, a black nationalist group, heckled Obama during his speech.

This will be interesting how Obama handles this issue over the next few months.



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