April 19, 2009

Obama relates to indigenous underclass

Race a Dominant Theme at Summit

Subject Seen as Drawing Leaders CloserRace occupies a far larger and more troubled place in Latin American politics than it does in Europe, where Obama rarely mentioned his ethnic background this month during his first overseas trip as president.

He is doing so more often here at the Summit of the Americas, in part to push an agenda that, among other issues, seeks to address the region's income disparity between rich and poor, the widest in the world.

In talking about his race and the backgrounds of his counterparts, Obama is associating himself more closely than his predecessors did with Latin America's indigenous, black and mixed-race underclass, which has long identified the United States with economic policies that benefit the elite of European descent far more than them.

The approach has helped to reduce, though not eliminate, the expected political strife between Obama and such populist leaders as Venezuela's Hugo Chávez and Bolivia's Evo Morales, the first indigenous president of his country.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Peace Prize for Morales? and Indians Rise in Latin America.

4 comments:

dmarks said...

Evo hoisting his fist with a fascist dictator makes the "guilt by association" charge stronger.

gaZelbe said...

Oh yeah, Hugo is a fascist dictator. Which part of democratically-elected leader makes him a fascist dictator? Is it just the standing up to America part? The fairness of elections in countries like Venezuela and Bolivia *should* make the US hide in shame. Perhaps dmarks could point to a previous president of Venezuela that has done more to empower to the indigenous people of that country? Or perhaps you could point to a previous president of Venezuela that has provided aid to the Native Americans in the United States?

Stop getting your news from FoxNews and conservative talk radio. South America is finally seeing many of its Native populations empowered. The real fascist dictators are right here in our country.

Gordon said...

You're right, dmarks exaggerated. Chavez is merely a fascist dictator-wannabe. If he gets his way, he can drop the second part.

gaZelbe said...

If he ever achieved the authoritarian power that Americans tend to believe he wants, then he'd be George Bush.