On February 27, 2008, Lou Dobbs invited the American public to rename Barack Obama, according to their will, rather than to use the name he calls himself. Conspicuously absent from that invitation was, authorization to call him, Louis Carl Dobbs.
Why doesn’t Lou Dobbs think that "what’s good for the goose is good for the gander?" Perhaps it’s what Jennifer Aniston calls a missing sensitivity chip, but in things racial it's called the legally blonde syndrome.
In the movie, Legally Blonde, millions of Americans watched the only African American, in a law school classroom, get thumped in the head by the instructor, for no reason — But what’s more shocking than what was done, was the reaction to it. There wasn't any. Not in the movie, from the student observers; not in the media reviews of the movie; not in the public discourse. The physical and emotional abuse of an African America, in front of his peers, in a prestigious law school, went unnoticed. The reason is that Americans have been desensitized by a racist culture, and Legally Blonde is an example of the stimuli that produced it.
Telling in the discourse about whether to Hussein, or not to Hussein, Barack Obama is the fact that what he wants to be called never comes up. Instead, the discourse centers around what his name means, where it comes from, how it's perceived, and whether or not people think they should use it. It is as if they don't know that people take, what they are called, personal —
In considering what’s good for Barack Obama, Lou Dobbs forgets what he knows. Namely, that in American culture, individuals are allowed to be in charge of what they are called. Consequently, to us, Tom Cruise is not Thomas Cruise Mapother IV; Halle Berry is not Halle Maria Berry; Gwyneth Paltrow is not Gwyneth Kate Paltrow; Angelina Jolie is not Angelina Jolie Voight and in this political race, Hillary Rodham Clinton is not Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton; John McCain is not John Sidney McCain; Mike Huckabee is not Michael Dale Huckabee; and he is Lou Dobbs and not Louis Carl Dobbs.
Calling people by the name they hold out to us is a matter of respect. Lou Dobbs should practice being respectful to Barack Obama by calling him by the name that he holds out for himself. After all, what’s good for a news commentator is good for a United States Senator. Especially a Senator who is poised to become a candidate for the Presidency of the United States of America.
Kudos to John McCain for taking firm action to uphold the dignity of the first African American to become a viable candidate for the Presidency.