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(WA Today)   A very poignant article about a black White House butler who served in eight administrations. For best results, read the entire article   (watoday.com.au) divider line 324
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27782 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Nov 2008 at 5:42 PM (5 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2008-11-07 08:24:16 PM
libbynomore2: TypoFlyspray Quote 2008-11-07 06:38:04 PM

This is a poignant story made even more poignant by what amounts to the whole of the country recognizing that, not only can a black man be as good as a white man, but that he can be much, much better. That's really got to warm the cockles of a fellow who was on the shiat end of segregation.


You act as though Barack Obama is the first black man in his life to achieve greatness.

Ever heard of:

Thurgood Marshall - First Black Supreme Court Justice

Clarence Thomas - The Second

Colin Powell - First Black Joint Chiefs Chairman and Secretary of State

Condi Rice- First Black ( and 1st female ) National Security Advisor and 2nd black ( 1st black female ) Secretary of State.

Rod Paige - 1st Black Secretary of Education

or do most of these ( besides Marshall ) not count because they worked for or were nominated by Republican Administrations ?


Wow you really are that insufferable.
 
2008-11-07 08:25:08 PM
HONDOWAYNE: Is it just ME or don`t all the NIG`s realize Obama is mostly "white?" It`s a well known fact that in "breeding" the child born retains 65% of genetic material from the MOTHER! I think it`s funny, just because he looks BLACK, they all of a sudden want to claim him like some kind of prize.

You know, people like you how I justified to myself voting for Obama just because of his race. The fact that Americans like you still exist means the need for a huge slap of reality transcends all his other shortcomings if the country is to progress. And I'm a rich, white, Republican, NRA member.
 
2008-11-07 08:27:28 PM
isn't the word "short-sighted" not "short-sided". Just wondering.
 
2008-11-07 08:30:07 PM
mrpurple:

Black people who voted for Obama on race alone did it to validate the American dream for their children and future generations of kids of all different shades of skin. White people who voted for McCain based on the color of his skins had less lofty justifications for doing so.


How on earth can you ascribe reasons for why anyone voted how they did when you don't know any of them?

Black people who voted for Obama on race alone did it to validate the American dream for their children and future generations of kids of all different shades of skin


it's pretty ignorant of you to ascribe altruistic motives to every single black person who cast a ballot for Obama as though they don't have the same potential for bigotry as any other race of people.

Moreover, even if you knew every black person in America, you can't read minds and it's pretty arrogant of you to think you know what motivates even ONE person, let alone all people. What are you the thought police?

/no, but pretty damn arrogant
 
2008-11-07 08:31:16 PM
Butterflew: Mimic_Octopus: Butterflew:

I'm sure you'd be thrilled to know that i'm a minority. have fun with that one, jackhole. I can still cuss you out in another language.

Woulda voted Obama if i could, but there are still laws that prevent me from doing so.

what exactly does you being a minority have to do with why this story is moving to people? i've encountered more negative racism from minorities than whites; whites specialize in this thread's type of positive racism these days...

aw how sad. I thought you were assuming i was White. Half, but still. There's kind of a reverse-racism here. When i was little people made fun of me b/c i was a 'gringa'. Point is, it exists still. I read the article from the perspective of the guy who was telling the story. The author of the article was speaking through Eugene. And I'm not sorry to say, I feel compassion for that man. He saw a lot in his life, and I'm sure for *him* it was more than just policy. The most moving part to me, was the end where his wife died. I'm a romantic at the core;) That would be a sad day for any of us, don't you agree?


The really good thing about this story is that the presidents mentioned and thier families' treated him well, with decency and dignity. Kennedy's, Carters, Eisenhowers, Reagans...he had something good to say about all of them and something they did nice for him
 
2008-11-07 08:32:33 PM
libbynomore2: DrForrester Quote 2008-11-07 08:00:42 PM
libbynomore2: TypoFlyspray Quote 2008-11-07 06:38:04 PM

This is a poignant story made even more poignant by what amounts to the whole of the country recognizing that, not only can a black man be as good as a white man, but that he can be much, much better. That's really got to warm the cockles of a fellow who was on the shiat end of segregation.


You act as though Barack Obama is the first black man in his life to achieve greatness.

Ever heard of:

Thurgood Marshall - First Black Supreme Court Justice

Clarence Thomas - The Second

Colin Powell - First Black Joint Chiefs Chairman and Secretary of State

Condi Rice- First Black ( and 1st female ) National Security Advisor and 2nd black ( 1st black female ) Secretary of State.

Rod Paige - 1st Black Secretary of Education

or do most of these ( besides Marshall ) not count because they worked for or were nominated by Republican Administrations ?

Annnnnd Mr. Troll shows up too late in the thread to make a difference.

Not concerned with making a difference, just a point in response to a pretty short sided comment.

In that I succeeded. Especially based on your non response.

Despite Typoflyspray's short-sided comment, I can't imagine that Mr Allen, after all he's seen in his life, wouldn't have already been proud of seeing people who look like him being appointed to high positions in Government regardless of their politics. Even if it makes a difference to people like you.


don't forget about Alphonso Allen Housing Sec and Claude Allen, embarrassed aide to Pres Bush
 
2008-11-07 08:38:34 PM
First a black president and now I like Nancy Reagan. Sure has been a heck of a week.
 
2008-11-07 08:45:53 PM
Wow.

The combination of this story and Obama's grandma also passing on Monday makes me really farking sad. Sometimes I wish I believed in some happy afterlife that involves still keeping an eye on the people you love.
 
2008-11-07 08:45:57 PM
libbynomore2: mrpurple:

Black people who voted for Obama on race alone did it to validate the American dream for their children and future generations of kids of all different shades of skin. White people who voted for McCain based on the color of his skins had less lofty justifications for doing so.

How on earth can you ascribe reasons for why anyone voted how they did when you don't know any of them?

Black people who voted for Obama on race alone did it to validate the American dream for their children and future generations of kids of all different shades of skin

it's pretty ignorant of you to ascribe altruistic motives to every single black person who cast a ballot for Obama as though they don't have the same potential for bigotry as any other race of people.

Moreover, even if you knew every black person in America, you can't read minds and it's pretty arrogant of you to think you know what motivates even ONE person, let alone all people. What are you the thought police?

/no, but pretty damn arrogant


Dumbass. He's saying the ones who DID vote on the basis of skin color, not that all voted on the basis of skin color.
 
2008-11-07 08:51:15 PM
Articles like this are what makes people still want to read newspapers once in a while.

Too bad the bean-counters kicked out the good writers in favor of entry-level chumps, agenda-driven hacks and bland AP copy you could find anywhere, so you get a piece like this once a month instead of three times a week.
 
2008-11-07 08:54:01 PM
"Look to the cookie!"
 
2008-11-07 09:00:54 PM
McDougal: "Look to the cookie!"

Careful, sometimes the black and white cookie can upset your stomach.
 
2008-11-07 09:05:05 PM
Tear, eye.

Article is also well written, poignant and timely. Isn't there anyone left who can do this on a regular basis?
 
2008-11-07 09:05:17 PM
bummer.
 
2008-11-07 09:08:53 PM
THAT... sucked... :(
 
2008-11-07 09:09:59 PM
BlueDuckFarker: Sir_Lurksalot: For best results... dont waste 5 minutes of your life reading this article.


/Im coming home weezie

Weezie was Mrs. Jefferson. Fred Sanford called out his imminent death to his wife, Elizabeth.

Farking racist.


Hehe, somebody didn't get the joke.

/or is a mediocre troll
 
2008-11-07 09:17:10 PM
This has great historical relevance, but the most heart warming story I read on Fark was an old couple who stayed at the same hotel (Chicago?) that they had stayed in years before.

I passed the story on to all my non farking friends.
 
2008-11-07 09:22:59 PM
Just did eye makeup to go out tonight.... have to redo it - I got something in my eyes.

Great story, inspiring - if a lot depressing.
 
2008-11-07 09:26:52 PM
libbynomore2: or do most of these ( besides Marshall ) not count because they worked for or were nominated by Republican Administrations ?

Praising Republican progress in the areas of racial relations creates too much dissonance with the "Republicans are racist" talking point, so it is avoided.
 
2008-11-07 09:27:48 PM
So, is every Fark thread just going to be retarded from now on with all the racist trolls? I will seriously be sick of that crap real quick.
 
2008-11-07 09:32:19 PM
Poignant - Bittersweet - Moving. A big life written in the small print. Thanks for the link, subby.
 
2008-11-07 09:34:03 PM
TehNacho: I came for pictures of slutty women in French Maid outfit, and am leaving so disappointed, that I won't be posting my own.

My only response to the article's end was "ohhh, that's too bad." Now I don't feel so terrible about my less emotional response.
 
2008-11-07 09:36:56 PM
wkiernan: farkin' A, Nancy Reagan!

And this picture was taken when Mrs. Reagan was first lady of the nation, yes, yes? Not of California.
 
2008-11-07 09:39:51 PM
EliteAnalyst:

All of which to say that I'm proud America elected another white president, and Obama is every bit as white as he is black.


Stop shooting down the fact that America has overcome our natural tendency to stick with what we've had before.

/Subby, good choice.
 
2008-11-07 09:42:26 PM
I am from Western Australia so you kan all lik my balls.
 
2008-11-07 09:52:36 PM
For the love of God, everyone shut it!

I'm a white, conservative who "clings to my guns and religion," and you know what? I thought this was a pretty awesome story.

Anyone who voted for Obama because he's black is a moron, just like anyone who voted against him for the same reason. That does not mean the dude can't be proud of the 1st black president.

I didn't want him to win either, but he did. He's going to be my next president. It's done. Now shut the hell up, everyone.

/rant

On a lighter note...subby sucks for making my contacts dry out, which makes my eyes water.

It was moving along fine, nice light personal interest story, then BAM! - the wife dies. What!? Sad, but touching.
 
2008-11-07 09:53:51 PM
libbynomore2: or do most of these ( besides Marshall ) not count because they worked for or were nominated by Republican Administrations ?

They all count. Who said they don't count ?

some are even mentioned approvingly in the article. You did read the article, right ?

someones a little overly defensive.
 
2008-11-07 10:03:09 PM
kindms: Well I think we can agree that Obama's life experience is vastly different than most blacks in the US.

He is biracial, was raised by white grandparents. Didn't really spend much time at all with his African Father, attended Ivy league schools and grew up in Hawaii.

So I think it would be fairly safe to assume he has more in common with White America, than he would with the Black culture of the inner city etc.


I think those who go to ivy league schools and have a career in the political realm, in the ruling class, have very little in common with regular Americans of _ANY_ color. The few who did come from families of average or less means have long put that behind and are more shaped by their ivy league education and political experiences.

As far as I can tell, the only thing different about Obama is his skin color (and being somewhat younger than most), which really is superficial despite what emotional values people may have regarding it. He's been trained at one of the same schools and backed by the same people as many previous holders of his new job and other powerful jobs in government. His so called 'change' looks like more of the same to me.
 
2008-11-07 10:10:03 PM
Mimic_Octopus: you know what that makes the selection of him, dont you?

Relevant to the angle of the story? Get over yourself. I know midway through college you think you've had an amazing epiphany about race relations, but it's just not true. Stories are told within, and pertaining to, the context. This is Eugene's story, and the context in which he sees it, as told by a reporter. Go be a douche in the cafeteria where others of your ilk can fawn over you for it.
 
2008-11-07 10:11:42 PM
Love the Nancy Reagan incident. He served eight presidents but only one had them dine at a state dinner.
 
2008-11-07 10:15:34 PM
leadmetal: I think those who go to ivy league schools and have a career in the political realm, in the ruling class, have very little in common with regular Americans of _ANY_ color.


so....in the past you voted for the guy you thought you'd like to have a beer with ? is that a pretty accurate guess ?
 
2008-11-07 10:22:55 PM

Not just because it's a great story... but because frankly the whole black president thing didn't mean anything to me. Why should I care what color his skin is? I only care about his policies.


Anyone who says that this wasn't about the color of his skin is a liar. While race may not have been the largest factor in voting for him, his race is part of his story and his story is part of the narrative he chose to run on.

Just as McCain was a navy man who was a prisoner of war and that defines and shapes the narrative, so is Obama's skin color. And that powerful narrative was more clear and resonated with more people than McCain's.
 
2008-11-07 10:33:28 PM
Met this fella on a detail once, nice man.
Me and the guys figured that he knows more secrets than God.

He just grinned and winked when I mentioned it.

Sucks about his wife, but if we lived forever
we would take our time for granted.
 
2008-11-07 10:44:09 PM
libbynomore2: Not concerned with making a difference, just a point in response to a pretty short sided comment.

In that I succeeded. Especially based on your non response.

Despite Typoflyspray's short-sided comment, I can't imagine that Mr Allen, after all he's seen in his life, wouldn't have already been proud of seeing people who look like him being appointed to high positions in Government regardless of their politics. Even if it makes a difference to people like you.


If you can't spell the term correctly, do you even understand what the fark it means? A typo's one thing, but... no, this one doesn't involve trapezoids.

/*Shakes fist at another mindless eggcorn*
 
2008-11-07 10:44:48 PM
Why'd he do it?
 
2008-11-07 10:45:10 PM
Bless you underpaid behind the scenes man, who never missed one day of work, never raised a stink about his wages, was good to his wife, and was happy living in the background noise of the white house. Sorry about your wife. Would buy you a beer if i met you.

/reaches for tissue.
 
2008-11-07 10:46:24 PM
That's one very touching story. Cool how he has seen some change in the world lately. Except for that major bummer of an ending

/Damn dusty room.
 
2008-11-07 10:47:17 PM
He probably won't live long, as it has been shown that people who are together that many years tend to die shortly after one another.

/tips glass to him.
 
2008-11-07 10:48:05 PM
Oh..and fark you subtard for making me cry at work.
 
2008-11-07 10:48:37 PM
Me: *read...smile...read more... smile... read more...smile... get to the end... WAHHH!*

That was incredibly touching. Good find, subby.
 
2008-11-07 10:52:20 PM
The butler cast his vote for Obama on Tuesday. He so missed telling his Helene about the black man bound for the Oval Office.

She knows.
 
2008-11-07 10:54:34 PM
I think I've found an excellent band name...not for my band...but for yours perhaps. "The Workplace Crybabies".
 
2008-11-07 10:58:00 PM
Bit'O'Gristle 2008-11-07 10:45:10 PM
Bless you underpaid behind the scenes man, who never missed one day of work, never raised a stink about his wages, was good to his wife, and was happy living in the background noise of the white house. Sorry about your wife. Would buy you a beer if i met you.

/reaches for tissue.

Underpaid?........... hell I joined the navy in 1963 and earned $58.00 a month after bootcamp, he was highly compensated.lol .. but it was a great article of a very deserving man. I am sorry for his loss. nuff said.
 
2008-11-07 10:58:16 PM
to those claiming it's racial bias to pick out this one man's story is ignoring the fact that when he started working as a servant at the house that held the most powerful people in the county, racism was not only common place but institutionalized.

Telling his story is not about how a black man is happy there is a black president, the story is how attitudes have changed from the point of view of someone who has lived though opression because of his skin colour. How he is proud of how his country has grown such that in 56 years a man who would not be allowed to drink from a white water fountain can become the most powerful man in the county.

if you can't get past the fact that he's black to see the amazing picture being painted you are a blight on humanity.

that said, I need to get some eye drops, it's dusty in here.
 
2008-11-07 10:58:39 PM
There's a play based on this man's career (forget the name). I saw it performed at Ford's Theater in DC, of all places, on a government exploration program named Project Closeup in high school.

/It snowed that night
//Some kids from Texas were acting like it was the end of days because they'd never seen snow before.
 
2008-11-07 11:05:14 PM
Bucky Katt: Mimic_Octopus: SubBass49: Wow.

/Something in my eye...
//Hope President Obama invites him over...

that would be great,

Are you proud of yourself, now? Trolling a thread like this takes a special kind of person.


But reading a thread like this makes it so convenient to know just who to put on "ignore."
 
2008-11-07 11:19:04 PM
As soon as it does reach their ears i would not be surprised that either an invitation to the W.H or maybe even a spot at the inauguration.

That ending... I can just see him in "automatic mode" doing what he knows and serving the friends there for him because of the shock.
 
FNG [TotalFark]
2008-11-07 11:39:27 PM
Great story. Hope Obama invites him to the inauguration, and gets to know him.

Sad.
 
2008-11-07 11:47:10 PM
What an interesting career he had. I would definintely look forward to a more detailed article or even a book. It would be an interesting perspective, indeed.
 
2008-11-07 11:47:23 PM
death of old ladies with 3 degrees or less of separation with obama trifecta in play?
 
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