As promised, the follow-up to my previous post on racism (here) within the Republican party. For one point each, identify the following racist individuals. (Answers below.)
1) What candidate for the 2008 Republican nomination, pressed to pay a compliment to then-Senator Barack Obama, described him as surprisingly "articulate and bright and clean" for a black guy?
2) What Republican Senator was 65 years old before he had the earth-shattering revelation that "black people love their children" just like white people do?
3) What Republican governor literally stood in the doorway of a school to prevent African-Americans from integrating it?
4) What Republican politician said then-candidate Obama had a political advantage as a black man who doesn’t look or sound like one?
5) What Republican governor coined the slogan "Segregation Forever"?
6) What former Republican president waxed nostalgic for the days when someone who looked like Barack Obama could only get into the White House by putting on a white jacket and pouring coffee?
7) What Republican First Lady told an ethnic joke about civil rights icon Mahatma Gandhi?
The answer to all -- None, of course. Republicans don’t put up with that kind of behavior.
1) However, Joe Biden did say:
"You got the first sort of mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that's a storybook, man."
Fairly typical lowering of the bar; only a Democrat could think it unusual for a black man to have any or all of those qualities. This is what George W. Bush once described as "the soft bigotry of low expectations."
For his jaw-dropping condescension, to say nothing of the ignorant slam at clean, articulate, bright, nice-looking, mainstream African-American individuals like Shirley Chisholm, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and Carol Moseley Braun, Democrats shrugged their shoulders, said "That’s just Joe being Joe", and promptly named him Obama’s running mate.
They claimed at the time they wanted him for his foreign policy gravitas. If you need Joe Biden to add intellectual heft to the ticket, your campaign has more serious problems than you think.
2) Although Sen. Robert Byrd was the answer to every question on my previous quiz, I couldn’t resist sneaking in one last quote from every Democrat’s favorite Ku Klux Klansman. In his autobiography he wrote:
"The death of my grandson caused me to stop and think. I came to realize that black people love their children as much as I do mine."
Byrd was born in 1917. The grandson’s tragic death occurred in 1982, when he was 65. By his own account, he had been in the Senate more than twenty years, and had served in the Democrat leadership for over a decade, before he finally figured out that BLACK PEOPLE HAVE FEELINGS.
Think how this reflects on the Democrats in his state (he never lost an election in fifty years) and in the Senate, steadily promoting this man who by his own admission never understood until he reached retirement age that BLACK PEOPLE ARE HUMAN.
Yet somehow, his new sensitivity toward black people’s feelings wasn’t enough to stop him from lecturing Clarence Thomas on putting the past behind him, and his infamous "white n*gg*rs" interview with Tony Snow was still several years in the future.
3) Multiple answers are possible here:
Virginia Governor, later Senator, Harry F. Byrd Sr., unrelated to the aforementioned Robert Byrd but nonetheless his ideological equal, put up every possible legal obstacle to integration in the 1970s, including closing down the public schools and re-opening them as private all-white academies. The movie Remember The Titans commemorates Virginia’s attempt to finally crawl out from under his influence.
Democrats loved him. When I lived in Virginia, a prominent stretch of highway was named after him. Harry F. Byrd -- DEMOCRAT.
Governor Orval Faubus sent the Arkansas National Guard to "protect" Central High School in Little Rock from nine teenagers determined to get an education there. Orval Faubus -- DEMOCRAT. And who forced the Governor to back down, allowing the Little Rock Nine to integrate the school in safety? President Dwight Eisenhower -- REPUBLICAN.
In 1963, both Governor George Wallace of Alabama and Governor Ross Barnett of Mississippi physically stood in the path of black students attempting to register at their respective State Universities. George Wallace and Ross Barnett -- BOTH DEMOCRATS.
Wallace would go on to serve multiple terms as governor, and ran for president several times on an explicitly racist platform. In 1972 he won the North Carolina, Michigan, Maryland, Florida, Tennessee and Florida primaries. And who was voting for him? -- DEMOCRATS.
4) Harry Reid has acknowledged describing then-Senator Obama as a better political candidate for being "light-skinned" rather than dark-skinned, and for speaking "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to.''
Many commentators have defended him, saying that he was only reflecting the political reality of voters who still take racial identity into account. I actually agree with this, since Reid was after all talking about Democrats; not Republicans, who long ago recognized that skin color doesn’t matter, and weren’t going to vote for Obama in any case.
To Democrats, your race IS your identity.
To Democrats, skin color is destiny.
So in that sense, Harry Reid was right. Who were the only people who cared if Obama looked and sounded too "Negro"?
Democrat voters, and racists.
But wait, I repeat myself.
What punishment did Reid get for pandering to the racist bloc? President Obama publicly forgave him, and declared the matter closed forever.
5) That was George Wallace again, who capped his inaugural address in 1962 with the words:
"Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever."
Years later, confined to a wheelchair after an assassination attempt and confronting his legacy, Wallace publicly apologized for his lifetime of rabid hatred. Democrats forgave him completely and promptly elected him to a fourth term as Governor.
6) According to "Game Change", Mark Halperin and John Heilemann's account of the 2008 race, Bill Clinton tried to pick up Ted Kennedy‘s endorsement for Hillary. Kennedy was reportedly livid over the conversation, telling friends later that Clinton had belittled Obama by saying:
"A few years ago, this guy would be getting us coffee."
Another report has Clinton complaining to Kennedy:
"The only reason you are endorsing him is because he's black."
Kennedy is no longer among the living and unable to give his side. We will never know the truth of this allegation, but it’s noteworthy that the man who didn’t hesitate to wag his finger at America and say "I did not have sex with that woman" has never once denied making these racist comments.
It should come as no surprise that the mainstream press has had no curiosity whatsoever on the topic.
7) Ah, the Clintons. America’s fountain of controversy that never runs dry.
You may already be familiar with the incident. Below is the official version, reproduced, almost word-for-word, by every news organ I could find on the internet:
During (a fund-raiser in Missouri) for Senate candidate Nancy Farmer, Clinton introduced a quote from Gandhi by saying, "He ran a gas station down in St. Louis." After laughter from many in the crowd of at least 200 subsided, the former first lady continued, "No, Mahatma Gandhi was a great leader of the 20th century."
If we were to rely on the mainstream press for our news, we would think that was the full extent of her transgression. It wasn’t. Here is the full transcript of her "joke":
''He ran a gas station down in St. Louis for a couple of years.
‘Mr. Gandhi, you still go to the gas station?’
Lot of wisdom comes out of that gas station.''
She told the joke like a sitcom writer pitching a story idea to a TV producer. Her audience, composed of course mainly of Democrats, laughed. She milked it for a few more lines, soaking up the laughs like a champion storyteller. Perhaps sensing that she had crossed a line, she backed off, issued her disclaimer, and finished her speech.
As we’ve come to expect from Democrats, a non-apology was all that was necessary to put the controversy to rest:
"Well, it was a lame attempt at humor. And I am very sorry that it might have been interpreted in a way that would cause distress to anyone."
Of course, she didn’t apologize for having caricatured the hero of one billion Indians and reduced him to a Simpsons-type cliché.
And she didn’t apologize for demeaning the hard-working immigrants to her country who had worked and saved for years to be able to own a business.
No. In true Washington fashion, she didn’t apologize at all for anything she said or did.
Instead she kicked herself for her ''lame attempt at humor'' that failed to cast her in in a favorable light.
Her only "regret" was that the words that came out of her mouth didn’t portray her to the world as she wished to be portrayed.
Not the first time a Democrat got off the hook with the "can’t-you-take-a-joke" defense.
If there’s a bright spot to this story, it’s that Nancy Farmer, despite Clinton’s help, lost the election anyway.
As you must have guessed by now, the Democrat Party and the mass media -- but once again, I repeat myself -- fell all over themselves to exonerate Mrs. Clinton, trivialize her joke, and of course never speak of it again. As with her husband, Robert Byrd, Harry Reid, and of course every other Democrat on my list, the main line of attack was "Since we’ve already decided that ____ is not a racist at heart, no comment or action from ____, however overtly racist, will convince us otherwise."
Not that they will ever admit it was racist, of course. But try this test yourself: repeat the "joke", but substitute the name of an American civil rights hero of equal stature. Rosa Parks, say, or Martin Luther King.
And instead of "gas station", substitute a stereotype associated with African-Americans. (I would offer some suggestions, but unfortunately I can’t think of any. I’m not a Democrat, so my mind doesn’t work that way.)
Say the "joke" out loud, and ask yourself: Sure, it’s still not funny, but it definitely sounds racist, doesn’t it? Or is it merely "lame"?
In 2006 George Allen, running for the Senate in Virginia, uttered the word "macaca" and all hell broke loose. For most Americans it was the first time they had ever heard this word, but the resulting press tempest maintained that it was an unforgivable ethnic slur. Allen was unable to shake this publicity, which certainly contributed to his election loss.
In 2008, Hillary Rodham Clinton ran for president. Try to guess how many questions she fielded on her Mahatma Gandhi joke.
No, seriously. For ten bonus points, try to guess.
(c) Kublai Khan Unlimited 2011.