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Racial Divide Widening Online with Presidential Election

Posted on: 6:25 pm, November 7, 2012, by

President Obama got another four years in office, but if you look at the popular vote, and not the Electoral College, the decision was rather split.

Race and social media seem to be magnifying our differences instead of bringing people together.

Here are a few things posted on the News Channel 3 Facebook page:

  • Holly B. posted, “How about how rough Facebook has gotten overnight. People are seriously going to extremes over something they have no control of. Obama was re-elected and people are deleting and blocking family members over posts! It’s crazy!”
  • Ellen R. says, “You are so blinded. It is not about racism!! Always got to use the race card!! That is pathetic. Don’t forget, your president is half white!! There are more important things than race.”

Pastor Craig Strickland of Hope Church said, “Do you know who I voted for? It doesn’t matter. I voted. That’s what’s important.”

But, it seems what is important to a lot of people what is important is the color of a candidates skin.

Wednesday, Dr. Strickland told News Channel 3 the city’s racial problems aren’t going away, they just went underground and are showing up online.

Our political commentator Otis Sanford agrees tensions are high.

“I think the results and how people voted really does not speak that much to the racial divide. I think the reaction to the results is what creates this racial divide.”

It really shows on social media sites. News Channel 3 needed to closely monitor what some people said on our Facebook page. There are stories about users blocking posts, some even unfriended another friend.

Sanford has a tough time believing it’s all about race, “It goes, not back to skin color, but to policies.”

While Strickland says the only way to bury the racial hatchet is to begin reaching out, “Spending time together across racial divide, having dinner together, having friends that are different than we are. [Those are] great ways that I think we can build on a foundation that would bring us together at the end of the day.”