With an African-American running for president this year, there has been a lot of chatter about the "Bradley effect," allowing the media to wail about institutional racism in America. Named after Tom Bradley, who lost his election for California governor in 1982 despite a substantial lead in the polls, the Bradley effect says that black candidates will poll much stronger than the actual election results. First of all, if true, this is the opposite of racism: It is fear of being accused of racism. For most Americans, there is nothing more terrifying than the prospect of being called a racist. It's scarier than flood or famine, terrorist attacks or flesh-eating bacteria. To some, it's even scarier than "food insecurity."
Political correctness has taught people to lie to pollsters rather than be forced to explain why they're not voting for the African-American. This is how two typical voters might answer a pollster's question: "Whom do you support for president?" Average Obama voter: "Obama." (Name of average Obama voter: "Mickey Mouse.") Average McCain voter: "I'm voting for McCain, but I swear it's just about the issues. It's not because Obama's black. If Barack Obama were a little more moderate -- hey, I'd vote for Colin Powell. But my convictions force me to vote for the candidate who just happens to be white. Say, do you know where I can get Patti LaBelle tickets?"