Hey, Barack Obama: My black neighbor sometimes plays her music too loud. What do you think about that?

So, I'm reading this article about a jazz singer, Rene Marie, who was hired to sing the National Anthem at Denver's State of the City speech this week, but substituted the lyrics to Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing, a song also known as the Black National Anthem. Drama ensued, natch.

But this post isn't about that. The post is about how the article is headlined "Obama chimes in on song debate: 'There's only one National Anthem'," and begins thus:
Sen. Barack Obama said today that a jazz performer's decision to sing the "Black National Anthem" at Denver's State of the City speech this week was wrong.

"Well, 'Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing' is a beautiful song that has been sung in African-American churches and other events for a very long time," the presumed Democratic presidential nominee told the Rocky in a telephone interview on his way to North Dakota. "We only have one National Anthem. And so, if she was asked to sing the National Anthem, she should have sung that. 'Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing' is a beautiful song, but we only have one National Anthem."
Um, okay. So I read the rest of the article trying to figure out what Obama has to do with this story, and why he was asked to comment. And…yeah. There's no reason.

Except, of course, that his own patriotism is questionable, so I guess we need to make sure that he doesn't support this rogue anthem-singer. If he did, that could be evidence of a nefarious plan to chuck The Star-Spangled Banner into the bin the moment he takes office, and replace it with Fuck tha Police.

And I suppose this is only the first time that a possible future president will be treated like America's Token Black Guy, asked to issue an opinion on the behavior of a black person to whom he has no connection—because that's the thing about being the first, or even a prominent member, of a historically marginalized community to go into a new space: You become the de facto expert on everyone else in the rest of the community, and you are damn well expected to answer for it when someone in that community does something wrong. (Or "wrong.")

Speaking of wrong, is it wrong that I hope the next time he's asked to comment on something like that, he simply replies, "I'll bring it up at the next meeting," and let America sort out the snide irony of that retort?

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