Subtitled: Shut Up, You Racist Republican Scum (because “we all know” you are)
Let’s finally have that long awaited conversation, shall we?
What conversation is that, you may ask?
Why, it would be the “national conversation on race” that we were promised we could have now that we have finally…finally…elected a black man to the presidency. Yeah, that one.
Except the “progressives” and Democrats have never shut up long enough about it for us to have a conversation – you see, a conversation is defined as a “spoken exchange of thoughts, ideas, opinions, and feelings”. We can’t have a conversation if the one of the components of the conversation only talks and doesn’t listen – there is no exchange of thoughts, ideas, opinions or feelings…that’s a lecture.
Three years after the election of the first black president (technically, he is bi-racial) this constant drone has become less about conversation and more about a tendentious and hectoring tirade. It has finally reached a level that indicates that the people ranting about the ubiquitous presence of “raaaaaaaaaacism!” in the Age of Obama have stopped trying to sway others and are feverishly trying to convince themselves that their obsession with race doesn’t mean that they were the racists all along.
We have all heard it. Conservatives only oppose Obama because he is black – because his policies are so awesome, there simply can’t be other reasons! Question Obama’s birth certificate – “raaaaaaaaaacist!” The Tea Party is obviously racist because they oppose higher taxes and expanded government spending and we all just know that minorities benefit disproportionally from government programs – so therefore: “raaaaaaaaaacist!” The next position from the 2010 mid-term elections was this rhetorical question: how on God’s green Earth could people be “voting against their interests”? An example is this post, appropriately titled: “A Voyage Into The Racial Code Words Used To Attack Obama’s Americanism”, from this April, 2011 post at a “progressive” site called PoliticusUSA from “Rmuse”:
During last year’s midterm campaign season, many pundits on the left were asking why Americans would vote against their own self-interests on issues like Social Security and Medicare privatization. Even with revelations that corporations and the oil industry are receiving tax cuts and subsidies while social safety nets for poor and elderly citizens are being eliminated, there are elderly and poor Americans defending the GOP and their rich corporate benefactors.
“Voting against their interests”? Could it be that the people were voting in their interest? Could it be that the 50% of America who are paying for these issues were voting to protect themselves? Nah. It is racism in code words…”dog-whistle” politics.
This “logic” was on display in 2009:
Rep. Mike Honda (D-Calif.), chairman of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, agreed with his colleague that elements of the opposition can’t accept the reality of a black president.
“There’s a very angry, small group of folks that just didn’t like the fact that Barack Obama won the presidency,” Honda said, adding: “With some, I think it is [about race].
Great…a guy who is a member of a Congressional caucus organized by race/ethnicity was pontificating about racism…no irony there.
In that same Politico article, we get a glimpse of the future from Representative Barbara Lee, who curiously is a member of yet another caucus based on race, that the Congressional Black Caucus:
Said Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) about the race factor: “There are some issues that have been swept under the rug and we’re now witnessing them come out.”
These race merchants have not been able to complete their racist sale, so we now are using “code words” for racism – “dog whistle” politics…but there is a problem with this strategy as well. In order to even keep the topic in discussion, every word uttered in opposition to Obama – or about him – must be defined as a racist code word. Ace at AOSHQ points to this Washington Examiner report on Ed Shultz’s MSNBC show:
Ed Schultz, host of MSNBC’s the Ed Show, believes that Republican presidential contender Herman Cain is pandering to “white Republicans out there who don’t like black folks” and accused Sen. Jim Demint, R-S.C., of using racist language in his opposition to Obamacare.
On his show last night, Schultz said that Demint, whom Cain has mentioned as a potential running mate, repeated an “old southern racist term when talking about defeating President Obama during the health care debate.” Schultz’s example? He quoted Demint saying that “If we are able to stop Obama on this [health care law], it will be his Waterloo. It will break him.” For clarity, Schultz repeated the offending line, “It will break him.”
Dr. James Peterson, director of Africana studies at Lehigh University, explained that “break” is a racist verb, “a term that was used to destroy, mentally and physically, slaves.” Accordingly, the Demint line demonstrated “how dark some of these racial discourses can be in presidential politics.” Peterson said that Cain, by naming Demint as a possible VP pick, “gives those folks a pass” on racism.
Peterson’s claim echoed and extended Schultz’s conclusion the previous evening that Cain, a black Republican, is appealing to white racists in order to win the Republican primary. “You think about white Republicans who don’t like black folks,” Schultz explained. “It’s almost as if this guy is trying to warm up to them and tell them what they want to hear.”
This has become just so much “white noise” (not a racist code word) in the background that it is now the equivalent of tinnitus in the political ear, a baseline of sound that is so constant that it is overlooked and becomes part of the background. The overuse and misapplication of the term “racism” has erased any legitimacy that it might have had. These race baiters only repeat it now to assure themselves that they are not the racists. They are modern versions of Dorothy, repetitively chanting: “There’s no place like home! There’s no place like home!” and hoping against hope that they aren’t trapped in a political Oz of their own making.
Then there is Herman Cain… Cain is a successful black man from Atlanta, a devout Christian, an educated and erudite candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, a man with advanced degrees in math and computer science with an enviable business career. Mr. Cain would seem to be a perfect “black” candidate. Well, except for one little thing – he is a conservative. This being said, these “progressive” racists can’t quite figure out how to attack Herman Cain.
Here’s the first attempt by CNN – it starts with a trademarked “progressive” tactic, the “we all know” defense where a false premise is put forward as fact and the argument is then built on that premise. They count on the reader to just accept the “we all know” premise without question. Via the always on-target James Taranto at WSJ:
Reader Jeryl Bier, who passed along the piece from CNN.com, took offense at the headline: “Cain’s Race Not as Big an Issue With Conservatives as Obama’s Was Three Years Ago.” Writes Bier: “There is absolutely nothing in the article that supports the headline. Where is the evidence that Obama’s race was an issue with conservatives three years ago? On the contrary, his supporters are much more vocal about Obama’s race than his detractors are.”
Taranto’s reader, Jeryl Bier, picked up on false premise. Taranto continues:
True–so true, in fact, that it looks to us as though the headline writer was sloppy rather than tendentious. The comparison is between conservatives’ reaction to Cain today and liberals’ reaction to Obama then, or, to put it another way, between Cain’s and Obama’s appeal to the respective party bases.
The text makes that quite clear. As reporter Shannon Travis notes: “Many conservatives decry the focus on a candidate’s race as an obsession for liberals.” Travis cites an example from a rival network that shows why conservatives are right on this point: “Recently, in an interview with MSNBC, host Lawrence O’Donnell pressed Cain: Why didn’t he participate in the civil rights movement?” This actually doesn’t quite do the exchange justice: O’Donnell, a person of pallor, berates Cain for being insufficiently committed to civil rights half a century ago.
“There’s a second reason that some conservatives, particularly tea partiers, largely ignore Cain’s race,” Travis notes: “it drives a stake through claims that the movement harbors racists.” This seems to us a reversal of cause and effect. Conservatives and Tea Partiers ignore Cain’s race not because they have something to prove but because they didn’t care much about race to begin with.
Democrats and “progressives” have continued the clearly racist argument of “who is an authentic black” or “who is blacker than whom”. This is an argument that I would think that they would want to steer clear of – based on the fact that Obama is half-Caucasian, but they seem to think that it carried some weight as a club against Cain. “Authentic blacks” like Tavis Smiley, Cornel West and Harry Belafonte have weighed in on Cain’s “blackness”. Taranto writes:
Cain has, as Travis notes, “waded into the ‘who’s more black’ controversy–him or Obama,” telling radio host Neal Boortz: that Obama has “never been part of the black experience in America. I can talk about that. I can talk about what it really meant to be ‘po’ before I was poor.” Conservative talkers Laura Ingraham and Rush Limbaugh have puckishly picked up on the theme that, in Limbaugh’s words, “Herman Cain could be our first authentically black president.”
“These barbs from frequent Obama flame-throwers are surely meant as an intentional diss,” Travis observes, going out on a limb. “By any reasonable measure, the president holds the title of being the first African-American to occupy the White House.” True enough, although it’s worth noting–as we did last year–that whether Obama was “black enough” was a subject of intense controversy within the black community in the early stages of his campaign.
Taranto brings it home with this:
If Cain’s race is a bigger deal than Kerry’s or Biden’s Catholicism, it is only because a black Republican is still unusual. That explains why liberal Democrats like O’Donnell are so agitated about Cain’s political rise. By disproving the claim that Republicans are racist, it threatens to dissolve the glue that binds blacks to the Democratic Party.
The Washington Examiner reports that Ed Schultz, host of MSNBC’s “The Mr. Ed Show,” has claimed that Cain “is appealing to white racists in order to win the Republican primary”:
“You think about white Republicans who don’t like black folks,” Schultz explained. “It’s almost as if this guy is trying to warm up to them and tell them what they want to hear.”
These white Republicans are so racist that they’re willing to elect a black man president just to keep black people down. The absurdity of that formulation underscores the left’s desperation to keep the idea of racism alive.
The current attacks on Herman Cain are just the continuing attempts of Democrats and “progressives” to employ a psychological defense mechanism called “projection” – “where a person subconsciously denies his or her own attributes, thoughts, and emotions, which are then ascribed to the outside world, usually to other people. Thus, projection involves imagining or projecting the belief that others originate those feelings.”
Who is the racist now?