Thursday, March 5, 2009

Obama's Snub of Gordon Brown: Is it Racial?

H as Barack Obama snubbed the UK?

The British press thinks so and they have even reported that Obama has specifically snubbed their Prime Minister, Gordon Brown.

The snubs started with the Obama's return of a Winston Churchill bust from the British government's art collection that had been presented to the White House after September 11 as a symbol of Transatlantic friendship and solidarity.

Churchill, whose mother was American, has been oft quoted by American politicians. But not by Obama, who prefers to cite the words and works of his hero Abraham Lincoln. A bust of Lincoln now sits in the Oval Office where Churchill once ruled.

The first formal meeting between Obama and Brown resulted in a snub when the meeting was scaled back. Instead of the traditional joint press conference, the Prime Minister was given an impromptu media briefing in the Oval Office.

The most recent snub was in the form a of exchange of gifts between leaders upon their first meeting.

Brown presented Obama an ornamental pen holder made from the timbers of the Victorian anti-slave ship HMS Gannet.

This is an important, symbolic gesture as oak from the Gannet's sister ship, HMS Resolute, was carved to make a desk that has sat in the Oval Office in the White House since 1880.

Brown also handed over a framed commission for HMS Resolute and a first edition of the seven-volume biography of Churchill by Sir Martin Gilbert.

In addition, Brown and his wife showered gifts on the Obama children, giving Sasha and Malia an outfit each from Topshop and six children's books by British authors which are shortly to be published in America.

In return, Obama gave the Browns a box of 25 DVDs and two models of the presidential helicopter, Marine One, to take home to sons Fraser and John.

My question is this, why the snubs?

I can only come to one conclusion ... and it has to do with the British involvement in Triangular trade, the economic force that brought slavery to the New World.

In this case, Transatlantic Triangular Trade operated during the 17th, 18th and early 19th centuries, carrying slaves, cash crops, and manufactured goods between West Africa, the Caribbean or American colonies and the European colonial powers, with the northern colonies of British North America, especially New England, sometimes taking over the role of Europe.

British ships were often used to transport slaves.

Obama, who sold us on his post-racial and post-resentment rhetoric can't seem to practice what he preaches. Why else would he snub the Brits? Perhaps there is something after all to the association between the Obamas and Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

Well, it just goes to show, there ain't no class like no-class.



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