Monday, January 11, 2010

Oh, come on


Let me preface this by saying that I think Harry Reid is a dim-bulb political hack and a sad excuse for a leader of anything, let alone the U.S. Senate. But Republican calls for him to step down over remarks he made about the 2008 presidential race and the election of Barack Obama are just plain stupid. For those who didn't hear the story in recent days, there's a new book out called "Game Change" in which Reid is quoted as saying that Obama benefited by being light-skinned and having "no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one." Based on the trumped-up outrage of Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, Sen. John Cornyn of Texas and Senate GOP Whip Jon Kyl, you would have thought that Reid had said Obama should be picking cotton in the Mississippi Delta. Oh, wait, that was Trent Lott, the former senator to whom those Republicans are trying to compare Reid. I kid you not. Steele, who is an early betting favorite to win the "Political D-bag of the Year" award for 2010, said Reid should resign his leadership position, and he tried to link Reid's comments to those of Lott, who quit his Senate leadership post in 2002 after suggesting that the United States would have been a better place if blacks were still separate and unequal. Any rational, intelligent person can see that there's no comparison between what Reid and Lott said, but rational, intelligent people aren't the folks whom Steele, Cornyn and Kyl are pandering to. Fact is, Reid was talking about the reality of Obama's appeal to voters, particularly white voters, and while Reid has apologized for his wording, his comments are essentially true. When 25 percent of Democratic primary voters in West Virginia in 2008 said their decision was at least somewhat motivated by race, it's pretty easy to see that a candidate like Barack Obama would do better with some voters than a guy who looks and talks like Sonny Liston. And while it might not be politically correct to say so, there is a "black dialect" in our country. It's a pattern of speech that most of us hear every day if we watch television, and traces of it are detectable even among highly trained speakers such as TV newscasters. It's really no big deal. As a nation that includes people of many different cultural backgrounds, we shouldn't expect each and every person to sound like Rex Harrison in "My Fair Lady." Lott's remarks eight years ago were decidedly different. The senator, now a lobbyist, said at a birthday party for Sen. Strom Thurmond, who was once one of America's leading racists, that his home state of Mississippi was proud that it had supported Thurmond's bid for the presidency in 1948. Added Lott, "And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems over these years, either." Nice. As for Reid, black leaders far and wide are rallying behind him, so this issue really is a tempest in a teapot. The Republicans should just move on.

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7 Comments:

Blogger PRIguy said...

I agree that the overreaction to this is ridiculous. Also, it's nonsense like this that stagnates any productive dialog to ease race relations. All those involved should be ashamed.

January 11, 2010 at 9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It never ceases to amaze me that supposedly intelligent people can make remarks like Reid's, then feign surprise that someone was offended by them. Then they offer the classic non-apology: "I'm sorry that my remarks offended you." Not, "I'm sorry that I'm an ass for making them," meaning, "I'm sorry you are petty enough to be offended."

That said, Steele is a classic ass as well. If you'd told me 40 years ago that America would become the kind of country that I am embarrassed to live in because of the ridiculousness of it's political system, I'd wouldn't have believed you. However, Canada looks more attractive each day.

January 11, 2010 at 11:36 AM  
Anonymous x anonymous said...

These intelliget people you speak of, are they aware of the double standard in America? Not just with race comments, but in actions also? I know the people on the left say the people on the right preach about family values, and then when one gets caught with his pants down, we always hear how they are the party of morals! Well how about if you're a married man or woman have self respect and don't even go there. There is an old saying "don't shit in your own backyard". Harry's comments is no different that saying " he sounds intelligent for a light skin negro". For the party that holds most of the minority votes, you think their base would be upset. I wonder why Harry took that crap in his backyard! If Harry's voter base was more intelligent and could read thru the bs, he wouldn't be voted back in. I don't think he will be in Washington much longer. You think as voters in this young Republic we would use our greatest gift better than we do. BE WISE VOTERS!

January 11, 2010 at 3:05 PM  
Blogger Lori said...

I agree, there is no comparison in the two remarks, move on.
The Dems had it right in their selection. Americans have grown tired of the old white guys on both sides. Obama was a fresh face that looks nothing like them. They knew his credentials would not matter. He said "Change" and he was a dark but not too dark man.Reid is just reiterating what the characteristics of Obama stood out for them that would guarantee a success. Many people voted race and that is all that was needed to replace all the old white guys rhetoric we have grown so very tired of. Kudos for the Dems to think of it first. I would have voted for Obama if he had actually ran a governing body and ran it successfully. I didn't want to vote at all.

January 11, 2010 at 4:22 PM  
Anonymous x anonymous said...

Lori, I think outside the box. You see one thing and I another. You have to get rid of the left right game. If you say your left or right you done lost.

On my two remarks, it didn't matter what side you was on. It's just noise! At the end of the day and it is HUMAN actions on both sides! Plus both sides share these mistakes. Wrap your pretty little mind around that!

We waste our time on petty issues, you know the crap that happens in our own backyards. We all know honest hard working neighbors. Friends, family... hell even us that never would even think about taking that first sniff of the grass... that always leads to taking that crap. Those are the kind of people we need running America again. Not liars, tax cheats, coke heads, drunks and crooks. Lori void the radio,tv and internet for two weeks. Then blast yourself with MSNBC for 24 hrs. I bet you just said "no". Why? Cause that is worshing your brain! Yet I don't know you, but most people in America have never been unplugged! It's a powerful moment when you see things clear.

January 11, 2010 at 8:53 PM  
Blogger Lori said...

x anonymous
Thank you for the "pretty Little Mind" spanking, may I have another? I'm frustrated with all of the politics. I don't want to be right or left. I want truth and justice. I want grass roots government. Back in the day when honest hard working people made sure our country was running smoothly. How can we scrap the whole deal and start over?

January 13, 2010 at 1:57 AM  
Anonymous x anonymous said...

Lori we send the wrong kind of people to Washington.

We use to send our elder tribe members to Washington to do the peoples bidding. These days we send those peoples kids or grandkids. People that didn't earn the respect that their fathers earned. Or we send a doctor or an attorney that has a large client list. These people are so out of thouch with the working class! It's time we find a man or a woman that worked 40+ years of their life in a blue collar job. Who understands what it is like raising a family on a middle class blue collar working income. Today we send people with the right last name or the largest bank account.

i.e Deweese. What job has that man ever have besides a tour in the corp? People vote for the man for what his father did, not the forked tounge, silver spoon fed Billy. You know who should run for his seat!? I retired coal miner. Greene County use to be a busy place. Look at it today. We have lost glass factories,coal mines and all the jobs that they supported. People will not vote for a man that would try to bring these places back, they want to vote for the career politician cause he has the inside scoop on getting the new prison built here. Soon we will all work for the State and produce nothing.

January 13, 2010 at 1:17 PM  

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