Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Racism Run Rampant

Been following the steady trickle of unabashedly racist asides from GOP stalwarts in the direction of the Obama administration and family alike?

First we had the South Carolina GOP activist who compared Michelle Obama's ancestors to a gorilla...later issuing a non-apology-apology to "anybody who was offended" and claiming that he was referring to her position on evolutionary theory - a matter upon which she seems never to have stated an opinion publicly.

Then we had an aide to a Tennessee GOP state senator sending out an e-mail photo collage of all 44 U.S. Presidents....except that the final position in the collage is a black box with two eyes peering out from the background, and nothing else. Ha, ha, ha - how funny is that? And not even a non-apology-apology this time: only an admission that she "sent it to the wrong list." Oopsie.

And then back again to that bastion of good taste and interpersonal aplomb, South Carolina, where another "GOP operative" tweeted that Obama will tax aspirin at 40% "because it's white and it works." At least he had the good grace to issue a "real" apology...though under the circumstances, its sincerity can be considered dubious at best.

What is feeding this flurry of the kind of comments that used to be beyond the pale, no pun intended? Is it that having a black President in office is drawing all the latent racism in the country to the surface, like iron shavings to a magnet? Is it the talk radio inflammatory speech making these people - all in party or government positions, notably - think that it's OK to express themselves in this fashion? Is it the free-wheeling nature of e-mail and Twitter and Facebook meeting with people of innately poor judgment? Or some combination of all the above?

I'm not sure I know the answer, but I do know that there seems to be a marked rise in all of this, lately - and not just from the likes of Michele Bachmann and her ilk - and I wonder why. What I do know is that it bodes nothing positive...


woke said...

As shown during the Katrina disaster, white racism against minorities, especially blacks is always just below the surface imho.

Having married a mixed race (black/pr) 16 yrs ago and having been together 20 years, I don't notice it much anymore like I did when we first began dating, when we continually returned to my rural hometown area. We reside in one of the largest college communities and largest cities in our state and the melting pot effect shields us from blatant racsim, however, with my rural background and military past, I know it exists full well. Because it has always been allowed to exist and seldomed discussed, it has never been dealt with and it seems to me that having a black potus affords us the opportunity to get it out there and thereby do something about it. That it pervades the usa institutionally can easily be seen by the racist "war on drugs" used by rwrs to create non-voting felon blacks. The interdiction and sentencing disparities are plain to see. The reliance on property tax instead of income tax to fund schools insured white flight and thereby insured educational disparities. Transferring public school monies to private schools via vouchers and charter schools worsened the situation. Lack of opportunity for employment, education and healthcare combined with poor inner city economic conditions sealed many black people's fate in the usa. I could go on and on, but i believe racism is indeed running rampant and there for all to see who cares to see it. That the repugs are crawling all over themselves to show their racism now that obama is elected is obvious. Hopefully, getting it out into the open will allow it to be dealt with in some ways that have been long needed.

Anonymous said...

And anybody who complains about these statements are either violating the persons free speech or exhibiting political correctness ran a muck. And yet who are the first people to butch when their little feelings get hurt?

Mike Haubrich said...

Say what now, Count Istvan? Pointing out stupidity and racism is not violating anybody's right to free speech. It's pointing out stupidity and racism.

And here's the funny thing about "Political Correctness." It's so 1990's to take such a defensive posture. The ones who complain about political correctness have never practiced but often preach The Golden Rule about doing unto others.

People like (Istvan) you are thin-skinned ninnies who can't take it when someone calls you on your stupidity, all of a sudden you are the "persecuted ones" who can't hack it and lash out childishly.

Mike Haubrich said...

Whoops, Istvan. I re-read your comment and feel foolish. Looks like I agree with you.

Anonymous said...

Whoops, Istvan. I re-read your comment and feel foolish. Looks like I agree with you.

Why is it that people that agree with me feel foolish? :) BTW I have made an ass of myself by not reading closely what others have written so many times I couldn't count them so I will not hold it against you.

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