When I was a child, my mother had a 'colored girl' clean for her on Fridays. In fact, quite a few 'cleaning ladies' would pass by our house early in the morning doing the cleaning in our lily white neighborhood. Although She was in her 30's, I called her by her first name. She couldn't use the family's cloth towels to dry her hands: my mother told her to use the paper towels.
That was many years ago but not a whole lot has changed in our society. We still are bigoted. Race really matters. Obama faces a wide chasm to the presidency. In Pennsylvania, MSNBC reported that 19% of the voters thought 'race was an issue.'
Former Virginia governor, Douglas Wilder, the first elected black governor, said about the Obama candidacy, "Let's not kid ourselves again, the issue of race will not disappear; but I don't think it will predominate." Wilder said he isn't surprised that Obama has run behind Hillary Clinton among white voters in some states. Obama has faced more "ingrained difficulty'' as a black candidate than Clinton has as a woman, Wilder said.
'Ingrained difficulty' is a pleasant way of saying that many whites won't vote for him due to his higher level of melanin. Bigots: unable to consider 'them' as equals. How many covert bigots are there in this nation? Quite a few, I'd imagine. Wilder, coincidentally, had a 10 point 'lead' in the polls on election day but won by a half-percent.
The 'Bradley effect' is a term that may be replaced by the 'Obama effect' this year. Tom Bradley ran for governor of California in the 1980s and had high poll numbers and even high exit poll numbers. Yet he lost because Californians lied about voting for a black man.
How far have we progressed from Bradley and Wilder? Not far at all. Dopey and racist Americans would rather see another 4-years of Bush/Cheney than elect a black man. A 'colored man.'