A telling difference
Gary ChapelHill at the Confluence:
The AP is reporting that Barack Obama is back to his old tricks of implying that anyone who does not support him, or dare criticize him is a horrible racist. I think this time though, he may have gone too far.
I have never been one of those to overtly proclaim my patriotism or wield it as a weapon against people who disagree with me politically, much like Bush did in the 2004 election. And I’ve never agreed with those who would make flag-burning un-constitutional. But I do love my country, and I do expect anyone even considering running for President to not only be patriotic in the extreme, but to respect our country’s history, symbols, and the sacrifices of the men and women who founded it, and continue to protect it.
Obama may think he found a clever way to imply that anyone who opposes him is racist. His lackeys have been going out of their way to do the same thing. Just take a look at what the exalted atrios posted on his site yesterday (although I always thought that he, along with digby, have always been prime examples of the snobbery and elitism that has made the “progressive blogosphere” insufferable–who knew he was a race-baiting tool too):
He’s An Uppity Negro Who Wants To Fuck Your SisterIt is the path that the McCain camp has chosen. They’re allowed. But if the word “presumptuous” comes out of the mouth of a journalist one more time I’m gonna go Elvis on the teevee.
Veeery classy, asshole. I’m thinking he gets his kicks by being able to say such racist crap due to the atmosphere created by the Obama campaign. This sort of nastiness is spreading, and contrary to what they say, it is not an “open discussion about race”. A caller on NO WE WON’T last night mentioned Whoopi Goldberg’s disgusting tirade recently on The View. What on Earth was she thinking? If you don’t want other people using racial epithets, how bout not using it repeatedly on a popular daytime program when CHILDREN are apt to be watching you. Jeez these people are about as tone deaf as a doorknob.
So today we got a twofer from Barack. He plays the race card and bashes America’s founding fathers in one fell swoop. It begs the question, if Obama is so repulsed by Washington, the presidency and the country, why does he want the job other than to destroy it? This man does not deserve to be anywhere remotely close to the White House.
vs. Shaker Abby, via Melissa McEwan:
I’ve been thinking about the recent McCain ad – the one with Paris and Britney in it – and some of the conservative reactions to the ad and to Obama’s reactions to the ad. It occurred to me that this could be a strategy to poke at Obama with “hidden” racism (the kind that doesn’t fit the conservative framework on the topic, which believes that most racism is eliminated and that which remains is the fault of individual bad actors, not systems or institutions) and forcing him to call that racism out. At that point, the conservatives can then turn around and accuse Obama of being “too sensitive” and “hysterical” and “unable to take a joke” – accusations that we’ve heard leveled at feminists and disability rights advocates, etc. Of course, the underlying racist message will still get out, allowing McCain to have his racist cake and make fun of Obama for being too sensitive to racism at the same time.
I do think McCain sees it as a bonus that the underlying racist message will be disseminated and may influence some people, but it seems like the main purpose of the ad could have been to force Obama to respond to its racism so that he could then be marginalized. (If he’s so upset about a campaign ad, he’s clearly too sensitive to deal with world issues! He can’t take any criticism at all without complaining that it’s racism!) See, for example, this post on The Corner: “If nothing else, the ‘Celeb’ ad forced Obama into a major error yesterday [by forcing him to disclaim it as racism]”. And this one: “It’s clear he’s going to play the race card all the way to November, and maybe beyond. If you criticize him, you’re a racist, to one degree or another. Obama is the uncriticizable, unopposable candidate: If you breathe a word against him, you must don the scarlet R (for you know what).”
While a clever technique, it seems to be a pretty morally bereft tactic.
I think this speaks for itself.
FOLLOW UP: Melissa McEwan’s piece on dog whistles at the Guardian’s Comment Is Free. I sincerely feel that PUMA as a movement denies this sort of shit because it serves their purposes to do so, which is disgraceful.