Let the spin begin!!
Not All Racial Comments Are Created Equal
Please God, save us from hyper-partisanship and hyper-media in perpetual election mode selling us a hyperbolic public discourse. Not everything is a crisis setting off alarm bells in a red hot explosive firestorm that may cost someone the next election. Not every disagreement about public policy is an intractable impasse, or at least not everything ought to be.
Translated--"It's ok for us liberals to go into crisis mode when a conservative says something we can twist and spin as racist/bigoted/homophobic/anti-women/whatever, but when conservatives insist on holding a liberal's feet to that same fire, well, that's just wrong."
Harry Reid expressed confidence that an African-American could be elected to the highest office in the land. Harry Reid told the truth. It is very likely that for many European-Americans, Barack Obama was an acceptable candidate because of his skin color and because he is both eloquent and articulate.
I can't remember if it was Sharpton or Jackson who made a comment how Obama wasn't "black enough". And one can certainly recall the LA Times article about "Barack the Magic Negro".
The point is, all of those who said that were liberals, and thus immune from anything but a surface correction. Heck, Shanklin makes a song about the LA Times articles that Limbaugh plays on his show, and it's Limbaugh who gets painted as a racist.
Whether Reid was speaking the truth or not (likely not), he was still saying some rather racist things. And if racist, or supposedly racist, statements are the no-no that liberals want to make them (whether real or implied), then Reid has indeed called the thunder down on himself.
But the real spin comes toward the end of the article.
However, what has gone unsaid in the analysis of this situation is that Barack Obama’s mixed race heritage gave him an advantage that other African-American candidates for president did not have. It gave him an intimate understanding of European-Americans. Born of a European-American mother and raised by European-American grandparents, he knew that white skin was not immunity against life’s hardships and disappointments. He saw his grandmother’s hard work and determination to rise to advance on her job. He saw up close his grandfather’s strengths and failings. When he was on the campaign trail, he no doubt recognized his grandparents in the hundreds of thousands of older white people he met. He may not have gotten their vote, but he knew their lives because he had grown up with it.
Barack Obama could see European-Americans through a lens that was not tinted with the horror stories of growing up African-American in the United States. And most African-American families have their own stories of racist injustice. Some are tragic. Some are heroic. A shadow of distrust remains. He knows such stories through his wife’s family, but he did not grow up with them. Without this heritage, he can say with absolute conviction that the United States is the only country on earth where his story is possible. He can talk of there being not a red America or a blue America but a UNITED STATES of America because the red and the blue, the white and the black, the European and the African are united inside of his very self.
I can only shake my head. Were those the reasons why he attended the church of Rev "God (bleep) America!!" Wright? Which grandmother was it he threw under the bus during his campaign? Does this mean that criticism of his policies is now not a matter of racism, or merely half-racism?