Democrats & Liberals Archives

GOP Racism and Nativism on Display

Virginia Senator George Allen (R) had some nasty words for a person of color from his opponent’s campaign:

“This fellow here over here with the yellow shirt — Macaca, or whatever his name is — he’s with my opponent… Let’s give a welcome to Macaca, here. Welcome to America and the real world of Virginia.”

The staffer in question, J.R. Siddarth, was born in Virginia. Allen, ironically, was born and raised in California! Welcome to Virginia, you racist boob.

Allen's defenders claim that was talking about Siddarth being "from Hollywood" in some unclear sense. While it is true that Allen mentioned his opponent Jim Webb raising money in Hollywood (is this even true?), that doesn't make any sense as a defense. Allen singled out a nonwhite person and called him "Macaca". What the hell does that have to do with being from Hollywood? At best, it was a double entendre -- he was referring to Hollywood and to what he presumed to be Siddarth's native country.

It is not clear what Allen meant by "Macaca". Allen's staff claims he was talking about Siddarth's haircut, which is known in most circles as a "mullet". As the Washington Post notes, "macaca" can refer to a type of monkey and is also a racial slur for an African immigrant.

Allen is way ahead, so this probably won't change the outcome of his reelection campaign. What it probably will do, however, is shatter his hopes of being President. If he had simply made a reference to nonwhite people and immigrants in general, he probably could have survived. But to single someone out for racial mockery, and get captured on camera, is lethal. Americans don't like bullies.

Oh yes, Allen did apologize, lamely. "I would never want to demean him as an individual. I do apologize if he's offended by that. That was no way the point." This is known as the business as the non-apology apology.


Posted by Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 7:14 AM
Comments
Comment #175589

Actually, according to Atrios, Allen’s staff said “macaca” was a corruption of “mohawk,” not “mullet.” The pic of Siddharth on his site (atrios.blogspot.com/2006_08_13_atrios_archive.html#115558801832716030) gives the lie to that excuse as well.

Of course, nobody will call the Allen team on it.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 8:06 AM
Comment #175590

Hmm… I don’t think I would call it a mohawk or a mullet. Sounds like they were desperately trying to find a non-racist, non-simian, non-scatological word that sounds vaguely like “macaca”.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 8:12 AM
Comment #175591

Just watched the video. You didn’t think that was funny? Poor little Macaca. Of course he was trying to make him feel uncomfortable. The idiot is following him around! You dems gotta lighten up.

Posted by: Ed at August 15, 2006 8:20 AM
Comment #175592

Woody,

Were you so incensed about the bigots and racists in the Democratic Party (Al Sharpton, ex-KKK recruiter Robert Byrd, Jesse Jackson), I could find some credibility in your arguments. But even still, you are stretching this one.

keith

Posted by: keith at August 15, 2006 8:21 AM
Comment #175593

Yes, he was following around and videotaping Allen, in public. That’s what happens when you campaign. I guess Allen can’t take the heat.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 8:24 AM
Comment #175594

keith,

Byrd was in the KKK in the early 1940’s, or more than SIXTY YEARS ago. You think he should be purged from the Democratic Party for this reason? That would be a true inquisition.

Jackson and Sharpton, well, they are who they are. I’m not going to defend them or apologize for them.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 8:32 AM
Comment #175598

Woody

Why would you find it hard to criticize Jackson and Sharpton. Racism and bigotry follow no political lines. They are what they are and they should be criticized. That is what irks me about you trying, once again, to label one party as racist. It is only self serving.

keith

Posted by: keith at August 15, 2006 8:46 AM
Comment #175599

Very well, then. It was extremely inappropriate for Jesse Jackson to refer to New York as “hymietown”. I’m glad he apologized. Al Sharpton is a race-baiter and I have no use for him.

Now is anybody from the right ready to criticize George Allen, or am I wasting my breath?

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 8:50 AM
Comment #175601

Yes, but…

The blog title is “GOP Racism and Nativism on Display.” You are painting the entire party with this brush, but consider Sharpton, what, an anomoly?

Face it, you are doing a little baiting yourself.

Posted by: Charlie at August 15, 2006 9:15 AM
Comment #175602

A blogger provides a telling detail on “macaca”:

But Macaca is not American slang, it is European slang regarding their neighbors in North Africa. This was the missing hole in the story, and I admit to originally believing George Allen was not cultured enough to know such slang. As it turns out his mother grew up in the very area this slang comes from. This is damning evidence that he knew exactly what he was saying.
Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 9:29 AM
Comment #175603

It might be good to remember which party has a history of racism…the Democratic Party. It supported slavery. Then it supported segregation. Actually segregation in the national government was started for the 1st time by…Woodrow Wilson.

Please note I do not intend to in any way excuse Allen’s remarks. They were insensitive and stupid he should be held accountable. I was making a point about which party has a history of racism.

Posted by: Silima at August 15, 2006 9:38 AM
Comment #175606

Silima,

Some Democrats supported segregation, some didn’t. LBJ signed several civil rights laws. His opponent in 1964, Goldwater, didn’t think that the government should “legislate morality” when it came to civil rights. In Congress, civil rights laws had more GOP support.

Wilson was a racist, but I doubt the there was a lot of integration in Washington at the time.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 9:51 AM
Comment #175608

HA! Jeeze… Is it always going to be this way. It happened with Libby and Abramoff and Cunningham and Ney and Delay…

And now Allen. He does something completely reprehensible, and you guys come to his defense by saying: “But you DEMs…!”

Here’s the single issue: Do you guys on the side of the GOP have the spine to actually criticize one of your own, or does the label “GOP Racism and Nativism on Display” fit by the absolute acceptance along party lines?

To try a dismiss the issue by stating “you guys do it too” only acknowledges guilt without desire to make any changes. I’m fine with that definition of the GOP, if that’s they way you guys want things to be… or can you actually engage the problems in your own party?

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 10:00 AM
Comment #175609

To deny the Republican party, the party of Lincoln, is racist is to live in a non-real world. America is racist. Just ask a black American. So if Al Sharpton and Jesse get a little hyperbolic at times, so what? We whites deserve a little of what we hand out.

I’ve seen the Allen tape. He is a boob. A racist boob, even worse. How can Virginia, the home of so many notable Americans, elect that guy? I hope the Republicans do run him for President. Then we can go back to tricky Dick’s “southern strategy” which still plays in the South.

Get real.

Peace, cml

Posted by: cml at August 15, 2006 10:01 AM
Comment #175612
“How can Virginia, the home of so many notable Americans, elect that guy?”
The same way the folks here in Texas elected bush. We put up with him for all those years as gov, and they still voted for him TWICE as pres!

Don’t ask me what those reasons are that allow someone to be so narrow-minded - even blind - but there you have it. Might it have something to do with $$$?

Posted by: myles at August 15, 2006 10:10 AM
Comment #175615

cml wrote:

“So if Al Sharpton and Jesse get a little hyperbolic at times, so what? We whites deserve a little of what we hand out.”
—————
So. Stupidity and hatred are okay as long as they are evenly distributed?

No Nobel Prize for you today.

Posted by: DOC at August 15, 2006 10:25 AM
Comment #175619

Woody-

The title of this article is offensive.

As to Allen, it is obvious he was trying to demean this guy, a constituent, who had been following him around as part of a campaign tactic. Should he do that? No. Should he apologize? Yes.

Does this mean Allen is a racist? Does this mean that the GOP is a racist party?

Posted by: George in SC at August 15, 2006 10:58 AM
Comment #175620
The title of this article is offensive.

Really? Why? I wish I had a nickel for every time time a conservative seized on a comment by a random nobody to say that liberals are racists. I guess guess you can dish it out, but you can’t take it.

Is Allen racist? I can’t read the guys mind, but it sure looks like it too me.

Is the GOP racist? I don’t know. Let’s see what Republicans have to say about this outrageous behavior.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 11:09 AM
Comment #175623

I wish I had a nickel for every time time a conservative seized on a comment by a random nobody to say that liberals are racists. I guess guess you can dish it out, but you can’t take it.

And that’s your excuse for doing the same?

And I dished nothing out; you are the one “dishing it out.”

Posted by: George in SC at August 15, 2006 11:27 AM
Comment #175626

George,

Did I say that Republicans are all racists? Read the title again. There is racism in the GOP; here it is on display. Allen has an (R) after his name. The GOP has not withdrawn support.

If you can find any example of a Democratic candidate abusing a person of color in this way then as far as I’m concerned you are free to write a similar article about the Democratic Party.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 11:44 AM
Comment #175627

You are digging way to deep for this Macaca. Allen was making fun of the guy who was bothering him. Evidently thought that was the guy’s name. Allen is no linguistic scholar. It is unlikely he would have searched an esoteric meaning of an unfamiliar word. I have never heard the word used in Virginia. Evidently neither have the writers at the Post, since they had to look far and wide to speculate. Allen probably asked someone about the weirdo in the yellow shirt filming him and whoever answered thought that was the guy’s name. It was not important.

People are too sensitive to these things and look for slights where none exists. I also agree with the other posts. How is it that overt racists such as Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton are ignored, while we search for meaning in stray comments from others?

Of course I will vote for Allen. I probably will even send him a little money now. Especially because of this. You have to make fun of hecklers. I would do the same. You don’t need to know their names. Lighten up. Oh sorry - is that a racist comment? If Allen said that, I suppose it would make the papers.

I don’t even think Allen should have appologized at all.

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 11:50 AM
Comment #175629

To: All

Hate knows no lines, political or otherwise. The people who spew their hate, and the people who defend them, should be held accountable. Not by their party, or even the law, but by society as a whole.

So many bigots I’ve seen over the years! I no longer take a word they say seriously. This is our country! It was founded on tolerance. The Church of England had none, so a group of people left and sailed to a land where they could be themselves.

Unfortunately, the bigots followed, resulting in the destruction of the native tribes. We need to be a progressive society, with no room for intolerance or the “status quo.”

Ed, you listening? That means people like YOU gotta go! I don’t care where; Hell is my suggestion.

Tony,

No, the GOP doesn’t engage problems within their own party. They cover up their scandals(read: Delay, Enron, etc.) shamelessly. They echo the “party line” as if it’s truth. They sneer at facts and call them “opinions.”

Why do you think they were so surprised when the Left kicked Lieberman to the curb?

Posted by: ChristianLeft at August 15, 2006 11:51 AM
Comment #175633

Oh, come on, Jack. What would you guys be saying if a dark-skinned Indian was following around a Democratic candidate, and the guy called him a “kaffir” and said “welcome to America”? How about if the candidate’s mother grew up in South Africa, so he presumably knew that it was the South African equivalent of the “N-word”? His staff says “kaffir” sounds like “coffee” (malaca=mohawk), and that they were making fun of the guy for drinking too much coffee. Then it turns out that the guy doesn’t even drink coffee (= doesn’t have a mohawk).

In my book, even the “welcome to America” part was offensive. You shouldn’t look at someone’s skin and assume that they are an immigrant.

So much for Pres. Allen.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 12:10 PM
Comment #175634

By the way, what makes you jump to the conclusion that he was heckling Allen?

Is it OK if I call you “Cracker”? Oh, I thought that was your last name. My mistake. This slips can be so embarrassing…

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 12:18 PM
Comment #175635

“The people who spew their hate, and the people who defend them, should be held accountable. Not by their party, or even the law, but by society as a whole.”

I was very glad to see this and I agree 100%. Now, will you please get the left to quit calling President Bush and his supporters “rednecks?”

“No, the GOP doesn’t engage problems within their own party. They cover up their scandals(read: Delay, Enron, etc.) shamelessly.”

Amen! I still can’t believe how they covered up Lott and let him keep all his power and influence.

“Macaca, or whatever his name is”

He didn’t say “look at that macaca” or anything close to that. He was suggesting his name was Macaca.

You guys are really reaching with this one.
Whats the matter, afraid “Bush is evil” and “the war is bad” stances aren’t working?

Posted by: kctim at August 15, 2006 12:27 PM
Comment #175636

Keith,
I find it troubling that you would label Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton racists. Is it really racist to fight for freedom and equality?

Posted by: Tracy at August 15, 2006 12:36 PM
Comment #175637

kctim,

“He was suggesting his name was Macaca.”

You are completely wrong. Allen’s own campaign has stated unequivocally that “macaca” was derivative of “mohawk.”

Now, can someone please explain WHY you would change the word “mohawk” in the first place? Once you’ve done that, explain the coincidence of changing the word “mohawk” and getting a racial slur presumably known to Allen’s mother.

I think this is a clear case where we can reject the null hypothesis of no relationship.

It’s also extraordinarily telling that nobody on the right side will condemn these remarks. They truly have no shame at all.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 12:43 PM
Comment #175638

“At a campaign rally in southwest Virginia on Friday, Allen repeatedly called a volunteer for Democrat James Webb “macaca.” During the speech in Breaks, near the Kentucky border, Allen began by saying that he was “going to run this campaign on positive, constructive ideas” and then pointed at S.R. Sidarth in the crowd.”


OK, so how exactly did he get the guy’s name that wrong? Come on, the guy’s name is JAMES. I could run my head over with my car and still remember that - or at least not come up with Macaca.

No idea how any one got the idea James was bothering him in any way… but he was there taping this guy. Pretty much standard practice… Maybe the guy is just a blithering idiot and had a freudian slip. He deserves a bit of a hard on this, even if it’s simply for media training. Never say anything in front of a camera that you don’t want the whole world to hear. As far as humor goes, spend 3 hours with your media person going over jokes and situations to use them in. DO NOT STRAY FROM THESE JOKES. Stupid humor has ruined more campaigns that annything other than “other women.”

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 12:45 PM
Comment #175639

“No, the GOP doesn’t engage problems within their own party. They cover up their scandals(read: Delay, Enron, etc.) shamelessly.”

What? Delay and Enron were out there for EVERYONE to see. Enron? a Republican issue?

Yes, the republican party covers up incidents like this just as the democrats sweep under the rug their own ant-semites and black racists remarks. Don’t worry, the “Uncle Tom” who beat out Cynthia McKinney dems will be back….she promises. Not to mention the Black Panthers who help support her campaign. Did I mention she also hates white cops?

That being said, what makes the democrats more palatable to the American public? Its not a republican or democrat trait, it is a political trait.
Hmmm, just wondering why this blog did not start a thread about Cynthia but they did about George Allen?

Posted by: curmudgeon-at-large at August 15, 2006 12:49 PM
Comment #175642

OK - sorry, my bad, DOH! The guys name wasn’t James. (HAHAHA) Should’ve waited to do the whole running the head over with the car thing.

Anyway - S.R. Sidarth is his name. (No “M”…) But it bothers me as much the way he says “Macaca, or something like that…” which is the exact way people (who have issue with foreigners also sound so nasty when they have problems pronouncing those foreign names.) It’s a dismissal of the person or name simply because it is foreign… and the fact that this guy says “Welcome to America.” It’s hard to not think there is a racial bias somewhere in that.

To me, it sounds very much like REDNECK in the way it was delivered. “Damn foreigners!” Trust me, I have enough redneck blood in me - the xray of my spine looks like a banjo. (Also, my Mom & Dads wedding party had a spittoon boy walk up the isle.)

Again, if you don’t know - don’t guess, just talk around the name.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 12:56 PM
Comment #175644

“Hmmm, just wondering why this blog did not start a thread about Cynthia but they did about George Allen?”

Cynthia lost… right? We cleaned house - isn’t that what you’re suppose to do in those situations? It wasn’t until Delay had won his primary, and the RNC started to sense things turning for the worse that he was removed (or tired) from the ballet. Have you discussed the serious issues with the likes of Delay, Cunningham, Ney?

You also know the Ken Lay(?) was the largest contributor to Bush in 2000. He’s no more a REP issue that Abramoff.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 1:01 PM
Comment #175645

Yipee! Nothing else of major importance going on in the world. I know! Lets bash ALL republicans (or at least villify them) by playing the racist card.

1. You are reaching with this particular racist comment. If the guy called him an uncle tom or a porch monkey - fine. Macaca? That is stupid. It actually sounds kinda funny, and I think Im going to start using it to make fun of my friends (of all races/religion/colors). Like “hey that was a dumb thing to do - you are such a macaca!”

2. Republicans can sling the racist card at your side of the aisle just as much if not more (Robert Byrd is my favorite victim here with his past ties to the KKK AFTER 1946 and his “white nigger” commentary on Tony Snow. Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson don’t get a reprieve for hurling racial epitaphs just for being black. They are staunchly liberal and probably the two most racist people in politics. They make their living by playing the race card. I despise them both immensely.

3. This blog stands out as something which its purpose is used to incite anger, villify a certain group and foster overt disclusionary sentiments. GOP RACISM ON DISPLAY. Are you implying that I am a racist because someone else of the same political beliefs made a comment (that is loosly racist at best)??? Are all Republicans racist Woody? Is this just another example of republican racism, or how another blogger puts it “To deny the Republican party, the party of Lincoln, is racist is to live in a non-real world”

Explain that one to Condi, or Colin, or even myself who is white but married an african american/korean woman…

Posted by: b0mbay at August 15, 2006 1:02 PM
Comment #175646

bOmbay,

I don’t think that all Republicans are racist. I don’t think you are racist. Your wife has nothing to do with George Allen. The existence of Condi Rice and Colin Powell does not excuse Allen acting like a racist buffoon. Even if “macaca” is just a funny, foreign-sounding word that came to his head, his comments were still racist.

Republicans who aren’t racist should speak out on this.

Byrd gave REAL apology for his “white nigger” comment. He said the word had no place in today’s society. Will Allen say the same about his conduct?

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 1:11 PM
Comment #175647

I am on the right and I condemn Allen’s remarks. Happy? What he said is inexcusable. That does not mean he should be booted from office. If his constituents believe that he represents them well, they should vote for him. If they feel that one racist remark is enough to eject him from office, they should not.

The GOP is not inherently racist. I am not a racist. To call the GOP and therefore me racist is not a good idea, especially if you’re trying to sway voters from the other side of the aisle…So please stop.

Can we agree that both sides have their embarrasments that they would rather hide from the public eye? Surely not every Republican agrees with everything Tom DeLay says. Surely not every Democrat agrees with everything Al Sharpton says. Can we agree that some Reps and Dems are racists and a host of other -ists. That does not mean that all of them are that -ist.

I do not think that every Democrat is racist. Actually I think that Democrats have a better recent record on civil rights. (But few would contest that) Nor are all republicans racist. Having a different opinion on how race should be handled is not racism. Maybe those opinions are based on racism. If so, those holding those opinions should be held accountable. But lets not jump to conclusions.

Posted by: Silima at August 15, 2006 1:13 PM
Comment #175648

b0mbay -

“Lets bash ALL republicans (or at least villify them) by playing the racist card.”

On a previous post (letter to Joe) - Ken said this to me after I simply posted a link to an extremely reprehinsable act by the Israelis…
“your blind hate of Jews and your blind belief in Hezbollah:”

Wow - anti-semetic and terrrorists in a single sentence, and you said nothing, even though you were very much involved in the discussion. ??? Does it only bother you when people you side with are attacked? (I only bring this up because it was a very recent event, and you let it slip without comment. Why so vocal now, but not 2 days ago?)

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 1:15 PM
Comment #175650

I’ve said it before, but it looks as if it bears repeating. If saying something stupid automatically diqaulified a candidate from public office, eventually our entire government would be composed of Mimes.

I really like this thread, because it shows me just how serious some people are about how they view thier leadership. We all suggest that our leaders should be held to a higher standard of behavior, and then something like this occurs and it is brushed off.

Any elected official should always behave as if they were in a perpetual interview. It seems Sen. Allen has become comfortable enough in his position to allow a certain level of casualness in his media dealings. If he “is” indeed so comfortable, and feels that he can say or do anything without reproach, he needs to move on to more challenging pursuits.

Your turn d.a.n

Posted by: DOC at August 15, 2006 1:41 PM
Comment #175651

woody,

I’m not sure what the point of this whole post is…

If it’s to say that there are vocal idiots on both sides of the political fence, then that’s not anything new.

If it’s to say that Republicans do it more, then that’s a little myopic.

If you want a more valid apology…that’s valid, but hardly a big deal.

If it’s to say the Dems have found a new strategy of being thoroughly annoying in order get a sound bite which would have never been made had he not been there, it would be true.

So what’s your point?

Posted by: Cliff at August 15, 2006 1:50 PM
Comment #175652

Woody

I just never heard of the macaca word. I do believe he was trying to say the guy’s name. I watched the tape and that is what it implies. He say “or whatever his name is”. It not a name calling. The welcome to America, I also understand to mean welcome to the REAL America and Virginia. I know it makes Dems mad and maybe it is not fair, but Republicans tend to think that they represent the heartland of America, while Dems are the Hollywood elites.

You can call me cracker if you want, but I think that is specific reference to a southern rural man. My wife says I am becoming that from hanging around with such guys, but I am not entitled to the term by birth.

If you can tell me of any other time you have heard the word “macaca” used as a racial slur, maybe we can talk about it.

I have lived in Virginia off and on for many years. I have traveled all over the state and talked to people of many walks of life. I have never heard that term. Why would Allen just make up his own word? If you are trying to insult someone, he and others have to know it. Allen was trying to say the guy’s name and he just got it wrong. Remember the Seinfeld episode?

Re mispronouncing foreign names, my father’s family was Polish and I lived in Poland. Ain’t hardly nobody (Cracker speak) in the U.S. who comes close to properly pronouncing most Polish names. Often their attempts are funny. Does that bother me? No. Polish names are very easy to pronounce to those familiar with them, but nearly impossible for others. So what? Many Pole just “translate” their own names into American.

Tony

Cynthia lost. Good. But she was an honest to God racist. There was no doubt. I don’t think the Republicans have produced anyone so blatant.

It goes to show the progress we have made in the U.S. Used to be racism was clear and dangerous. Now we can argue about the misuse of a word none of us had hear used before today.

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 1:59 PM
Comment #175655

So disingenous, Jack, it’s hard to even count the ways, but I’ll try:

1) “I do believe he was trying to say the guy’s name.”
- The guy’s name is Sidarth, S.R. Sidarth. Do explain how one gets “macaca” from “S.R. Sidarth.”
- Allen’s own campaign says “macaca” was a corruption of “mohawk,” in reference to Sidarth’s haircut. Does your inference somehow trump Allen’s own campaign?

2) “If you can tell me of any other time you have heard the word “macaca” used as a racial slur, maybe we can talk about it.”

- It’s not to the point that any one of us has heard the word so used. It’s now an established fact that the slur “macaca” is in use in precisely the same area where Allen’s mother was born and raised.

- Here’s an example: in Portuguese, the word “veado” is used as a slur referring to homosexuals (it literally means “deer”). I grew up hearing it said often in my neighborhood. If I used it in my own speech, referring to “this veado over here,” even if YOU didn’t understand, a Portuguese-speaking audience would. “Macaca” is a racist slur that would be known to Allen’s mother. There is literally no way the use of that particular word in that particular context was an accident.

3) Again, Allen did not “make this word up.” It has a clear etymology.

So maybe you can explain again how your peculiar beliefs trump empirical reality? Oh yeah, you’re a Republican.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 2:13 PM
Comment #175659

Cliff,

As far as I can tell, the guy was just standing there with a camera. Maybe sending a dark-skinned person to stand around Allen’s rallies with a camera was a brilliant ploy to get Allen to act like a racist ass. If so, it worked.

Jack,

We’re getting hung up too much on the “macaca” word. Even if it’s nonsense to him, he’s still a race-baiting ass.

By the way, I would hate for anyone to think I called you a cracker. My point was that “confusing” someone’s name with a racial epithet is a rather lame defense. Especially if that person’s name is not even remotely like what you called them.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 2:26 PM
Comment #175660

Why Allen would deliberately use a racist slur in front of a camera I have no idea. Unless someone can show a pattern, I have no problem with letting it go. When a Republican makes political hay out of something dumb one of my liberal brethen says, I get annoyed. Let’s focus on issues.

Posted by: Trent at August 15, 2006 2:27 PM
Comment #175663

“It’s also extraordinarily telling that nobody on the right side will condemn these remarks. They truly have no shame at all”

Whats to condemn? This is nothing but a political reach by the left and its a very tired and too often used tactic.
Things like this and the double standard against whites, is why alot of REAL racism is often ignored or swept aside by many.

Besides, good ole cynthia m. was a known racist the entire time she held office. The Dems did nothing and left it up to the voters. They voted her out because she no longer represented their views. You guys said leave lamont alone, its up to the voters to decide who represents them.
But now that its a Republican, you don’t want to wait to hear the voters. You want to scream that the whole GOP is racist just so you can win some elections.
Pitiful.

Posted by: kctim at August 15, 2006 2:31 PM
Comment #175665

- It’s not to the point that any one of us has heard the word so used. It’s now an established fact that the slur “macaca” is in use in precisely the same area where Allen’s mother was born and raised.

Arr-squared - That still doesn’t define it as derogatory. In and of itself it is no more derogatory than if someones Mother is raised in Texas and they are called Texan.

I do agree with the rest of your argument.

Posted by: DOC at August 15, 2006 2:40 PM
Comment #175666

I heard a new phrase from my Mother-in-Law… to the waitress at a local restarant of all places. She was discussing that a store use to be where the restarant now was, and she said “We all new it was a Jewsih Fire.”

WTF!

OK, she’s in her 70s, and just can’t change old habits I guess…. but DAMN! No one at the table knew what to say next. I know she has had a racists up-bringing… but you have to stop things when you can. We had a quick talk after the waitress left. My mother-in-law is mostly a good hearted person woman, but I can’t let things like that slide. Even unintended hatred is a bad thing.

As far as this thing with Allen goes - there is a racial sub-text to this, even if it was subconcious in his mind - why else say “Welcome to America” after obviously butchering a foreign name? Does Allen need to be re-elected? That’s for the voters to decide. I don’t live there, and don’t vote Republican, so I have absolutely no say in that matter.

As far as the meaning of this post - this is my take on things: I’ve heard so much about how a vote for Lamont is a vote for terrorists (and this coming from the leaders of the RNC) yet this comment gets no reaction. I think anyone here can at least see where this comment MIGHT have bad connotations. Can someone show me anything resembling Lamont’s “support” for terrorism?

Oh hell, it’s inside 3 months till elections - both sides suck and I want them all to go home. I don’t care if the new politicans drool on the themselves and wear helmets indoors… they have to have better odds at makes things better or not screwing up like the current lot does.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 2:40 PM
Comment #175668

Jack - The last I checked Hollywood, California, was part of the America. I mean, really, part of America. Suggesting that it isn’t in front of a representative of that area could justly be viewed as condescending and disrespectful.

Wouldn’t you agree?

Posted by: DOC at August 15, 2006 2:48 PM
Comment #175669

All Republicans are not racist. Of course not. And neither are all Democrats. There are some racists in both parties.

But this is not the issue. George Allen presents himself as one of those holy men. He is a man of religion who tells the rest of us what to do with our lives. He worries a great deal about poor, defenseless embryonic stem cells. When he sees someone who is not white and who obviously belongs to the opposing party, he calls him a makaka. Worse, he tells everyone to welcome him to the U.S.

This is commendable behavior for a senator?

Posted by: Paul Siegel at August 15, 2006 2:56 PM
Comment #175671

tony, ChristianLeft, good posts.

Woody:
“Republicans who aren’t racist should speak out on this.”

Yes, they should. Racism is thoroughly disgusting, and should always be rejected.

Jack and few of you others, please stop trying to make excuses when you know that criticism for Allen’s remark is entirely warranted.

Posted by: Adrienne at August 15, 2006 3:02 PM
Comment #175672

DOC,

“That still doesn’t define it as derogatory. In and of itself it is no more derogatory than if someones Mother is raised in Texas and they are called Texan.”

What are you talking about? The word “macaca” is the genus of a monkey, and is used on humans only as a racial slur. It does not refer to a place, like Texas. The word is only _properly_ used to describe a specific genus of monkey - used to refer to a human being can only be derogatory.

Do explain how one person can call another a macaca and not have it be derogatory.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 3:14 PM
Comment #175676

I remember when Howard Cosell used the term “the little monkey” to describe Washington receiver Alvin Garrett. Cosell was assailed and criticized as a racist. In truth, the racists were the ones who took his innocent statement as being racist—-Cosell never put any race to his statement at all.

Cosell described a wiry, small, quick and athletic man as a monkey. Monkeys are….well, they are wiry, small, quick and athletic. Anyone who knew anything about Cosell knew he was anything but racist. He was colorblind. Those who took Cosell’s one phrase and ignored his lifetime did so in error. They didn’t know—they simply assumed.

Now….is Allen racist? I don’t know. Was this a racist comment? I don’t know. But what is salient here is to look at Allen’s overall history, and not just one remark. If we void a person’s entire history over one remark, then we must get rid of Jesse Jackson for his Hymietown remark, must get rid of Al Sharpton for his Tawana Brawley episode, must get rid of anyone who has said even one potentially racist thing.

Does it not make more sense to look at a person’s overall history and take such comments in context? Or are we simply holding everyone to the standards of excellence that none of us could ever hope to live up to>?

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 15, 2006 3:40 PM
Comment #175680

JBD -

Anyone referring to a professional athlete as a “little monkey” is being racist, whether they know it or not.

As far as living up to expectations, I think we’ve held the standards for public office extremely low lately, and if we err on the side of expecting too much, well…??? hopefully it will turn DC in the right direction. I still hardly think we are holding people to unobtainable standards… hardly. There are quite a few politicians who never face their own stupidity of making racist remarks.

Was Allen being racists? Who knows what’s in his head or heart, but I recognize that phrasing from growing up among a gaggle of rednecks. There were those who could not complete a sentence without a racial slur, and there were those who never said an outright racial slur, but you knew what they felt by the way they said things… I distinctly remember the fun they had MISpronouncing African-American names, then they always dismissed it by saying “or something like that.” Allen’s comment felt all too familiar.

Following it by “Welcome to America” is also moronic at best, but that might just be my reaction to such stupidity I heard so much of in politics lately… that one party can actually be the ONLY party that represents real America. Unless we see a foreign government running in an election (not likely) then the only possibility is that both sides are American and represent a current thought that is American. To suggest otherwise is shear pandering at it’s worst.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 4:14 PM
Comment #175682

“Anyone referring to a professional athlete as a “little monkey” is being racist, whether they know it or not”

Why?

Posted by: kctim at August 15, 2006 4:23 PM
Comment #175685

Sorry kctim, I don’t even know how to start such an elemental discussion. Ask your mom or dad…

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 4:35 PM
Comment #175690

Yeah, thats kind of what I thought Tony.
You say its racist but don’t have any idea why you said it so you can’t defend your statement.

Is it the person who said something, possibly offensive, that is the racist OR is it the person who automatically highlights the race card for everything, that is the true racist?

Was the term “little monkey” a racist comment because Cosell was describing the agile actions of an athlete OR was it a racist comment because the first thing YOU thought it meant was “the black guy?”
What’s that say about you and how you think about race?

But, I will take your advice and ask my mom why some people are so willing to take things so far out of context to prove their point. No matter how wrong they are.

Posted by: kctim at August 15, 2006 5:01 PM
Comment #175691

Doc

It is condescending in the same way Dems refer to red states.

Adrienne

I just am not so offended by it. I am not convinced it was a racist remark and I have heard a lot worse from Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton, both of whom have run for the Dem nomination for president. Or how about Howard Dean with his is condescending characterizations of southerners and Christians. Sharpton at least has a sense of humor. I like Sharpton. Howard has nothing but hate in his heart, so I am a little offended by him.

Woody

I would not be offended if you called me a cracker, although I would prefer red-necked peckerwood, given my current hobby. Those sorts of things do not bother me. I think we are hypertensive about words. Then we have guys like Dave Chappell and Carol Mencia so what are we to think?

Arr & Joe

Two of my interns called me spider man because I ran up the stairs using the railings to pull myself up and they thought it was funny. They said I was too old to do that sort of thing, but their tone was complimentary. They meant no disrespect and I didn’t take any. I think it probably was funny. One of my interns in black; the other white, and I am white. Would it have been a slur some of the racial make-ups were different? We should all lighten up.

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 5:10 PM
Comment #175692

In Cosell’s defense, he used to call his children and grandchildren little monkeys when they were running around and playing. At the time of his comment he was very old and the athlete in question was very young, so he was simply talking about the athlete in the same way that he would refer to his kin. It was a shame that the comment was taken out of context and viewed as racist. However, Allen’s comment is a derogatory term used in a region his mother grew up in. He probably heard her use it in the manner she was accustomed to, and he let it slip in public. Since most people around here have never heard the term he probably thought he could get away with it without the usual firestorm and wihtout having to give a sincere apology. He should be held accountable in the election, and if he wins then it will be obvious that Virginians like racists!

Posted by: bushflipflops at August 15, 2006 5:13 PM
Comment #175693

OK - lets put our heads together and come up with a win-win situation here. Im in sales, so Ill throw out the first offer. The republicans will sacrifice George Allen to the proverbial chopping block if you Dems get rid of Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Cindy Sheehan and Michael Moore. I feel this is a good trade as we are giving up an elected senator where you guys are just sacking some left wing twits.

If I never have to see or hear from any of them ever again, my life will have significantly improved.

Whos with me?

Posted by: b0mbay at August 15, 2006 5:21 PM
Comment #175694

“But, I will take your advice and ask my mom why some people are so willing to take things so far out of context to prove their point. No matter how wrong they are.”

You can assume whatever you like… but why would this phrase “monkey” be in various racial slur databases… or defined as a racial slur in a dictionary. Especially when used towards black people, it is a racial slur. I am amazed that anyone would consider it differently. If you can not imagine that this is a racial slur, then I can not bring up to modern day ethics…

I have no idea what was going on inside Cosell’s head at the time… probably not a racial remark (he was an extremely sincere man, as far as I can tell) but “monkey” is considered a racial term, and so - anyone speaking in public should have the wherewithall to avoid using it.

People at that level of public exposure make huge sums of money, and that’s to help compensate for the risk of public exposure - and the cost of saying something stupid.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 5:22 PM
Comment #175695

Racism is aive and doing fine in America. We use racist remarks, but it is allright if we apologize for the comments. The use of the word “macaca” by Sen. Allen was not a mispronounciation of the work “mohawk” or “mullet.” These words are not even close.

The issue being discuss her deals with the statement made by Sen. Allen. Some of the discussants have mentioned other names of Democrats who made racist comments in the past. I jus want to say that two wrongs do not make one right. A racis comment is a racist comment regardless of who makes it.

Posted by: Jose at August 15, 2006 5:25 PM
Comment #175696

Bushflip

All of Virginia trembles before your searin’ intellect and fierce rebuke. We will all certainly make our decisions based on a fifteen second clip and a word most of us have never heard before. Everything else in our sentor’s record or that of his opponent is worth a bucket of warm spit in comparison to “macaca.”

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 5:25 PM
Comment #175697

“Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Cindy Sheehan and Michael Moore. “

Ummm… OK, but these guys aren’t elected, so no idea how to tell people to go away, it’s a free country.

Can I suggest fitting a 5000 lb. bunker-buster and loading it with Ann Coulter? Give it to the Israelis and let them hit whomever they choose with it. (I’m sure she will gladly sacrifice her life for the cause.)

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 5:31 PM
Comment #175698

Phrases such as “monkey” are also part of our everyday language and are used far more innocently than not. Why automatically assume they are being used in a negative manner?
If Bryant Gumble says he is going to have some soup with some crackers and then proceeds to eat it with 5 of his peers who happen to be white, do we demand he apologize?

What if I say “look at those “little monkey’s on that jungle gym.”
Am I a racist because some of those kids happen to be black or is the person who automatically expects to look over there and see black kids so they can shout racism, the racist?

“I have no idea what was going on inside Cosell’s head at the time… probably not a racial remark (he was an extremely sincere man, as far as I can tell)”

But yet, you labeled him a racist.

Jack’s right, everybody just needs to lighten up.

Posted by: kctim at August 15, 2006 5:38 PM
Comment #175699

tony,

Interesting idea. I might be inclined to entertain that if I can throw in barbara streisand, susan sarandon and tom cruise (just cause I am really tired of him - not for any political reasons).

What do you think?

Posted by: b0mbay at August 15, 2006 5:38 PM
Comment #175702

Jack,

In case you’re not aware, Spider-Man is a white superhero. Likening a white man to another white man can’t possibly be racist.

And since you’re being coy, let me offer this as well - if you can find documented evidence of “spider” or “spider man” being used as a racial slur in any mainstream discourse, I’ll give your post the modicum of credibility it currently lacks.

And kctim, call any African-American man in KC a monkey, and see how quickly you learn it’s a racist slur.

I mean, have you folks on the Red side sunk so low you’re left rationalizing away calling a black man a monkey?

And, JBOD, to put Sen. Allen’s comments in the context of his past, as you plaintively cry for, here goes:

* He used to have a noose hanging in his law office.

* He has a long history of flying the Confederate flag outside his homes and on his car. He sported a Confederate flag pin in his senior yearbook picture. At the time of the latter, Allen had never lived in the South.

* As a Member of Congress, he opposed the 1991 Civil Rights Act

* As a state delegate, he opposed creation of the Martin Luther King holiday.

Any one, or possibly even two, of these points, in context, does not necessarily imply racism. Looking at his “macaca” comments in the context of his history, however, points a far dimmer picture.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 5:55 PM
Comment #175703

“But yet, you labeled him a racist.”

I said the phrase he used was racist. Also, I have no idea what context describing a professional athlete “look at that little monkey go” could be used where it would not be racist. If someone said that to me in my profession, I would consider at the very least rude and stupid. And that’s what the TV execs thought, so Cosell lost his job. Who said making millions was easy?

I also fail to see the need to lighten up. Racism is an extremely ugly beast - and I have no idea why we should not prevent racism in our society. It’s not a crime, but it is social standard that should remain at the highest level. Cross a line, regardless of your intentions, and society should act appropriately. If you care to make ammends or discuss the circumstances later, that’s fine, but to expect any other reaction would create room for racism to live.

Mel Gibson is an appropriate example.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 5:58 PM
Comment #175708

Cross a line, REGARDLESS OF YOUR INTENTIONS, and society should act appropriately.

Now this is scary. You can commmit a thought crime w/o even having the thought. Somebody else interpets what you are thinking.

I say for the third time that we need to lighten up. Even the most totalitarian types cannot advocate thought crime w/o the thought.

Rational people judge others by what they do. A person ACTING on racist impulses is a problem. Their thoughts are their business. I do not know or care if most people hate me. As long as they behave well.

And Tony - still why the free ride for Sharpton, Jackson and Cynthia Mckinney? All of them have done worse than Mel Gibson and a lot worse than Allen. I suppose the PC police think Howard Dean can get away with racist remarks against whites because he is white.

Reminds of the the Seinfeld episode where the guy converted to Judaism so that he could tell anti-semetic jokes.

If we are consistent in our fight against racism, lots of people are out in the cold. Even in the cases of Dean, Mcckiney, Jackson and Sharpton, I think we should lighten up.

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 6:29 PM
Comment #175710

“Now this is scary. You can commmit a thought crime w/o even having the thought. Somebody else interpets what you are thinking.”

Once you make your thoughts or words known in public, they are actions and are therfore open for reactions. No one mentioned criminal process… it’s a reaction by society.

“Rational people judge others by what they do.”

Exactly. Think whatever you will, but once you interject it into the public realm, you have to face the consequences. Again, this is not a judge and jury, it’s the loss of public viablity for stupid remarks.

“And Tony - still why the free ride for Sharpton, Jackson and Cynthia Mckinney? All of them have done worse than Mel Gibson and a lot worse than Allen. I suppose the PC police think Howard Dean can get away with racist remarks against whites because he is white.”

Now, that’s simple political pandering — unless you care to share actualy examples.

“I think we should lighten up.”

We’ve spent the last 40 years trying to get on an even footing against racism… no idea why we should “lighten up.” Show me a single benefit.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 6:38 PM
Comment #175711

Sharpton brought a false rape charge and called cops racist for denying what they DID not do.

Jackson’s Heimytown and his constant racial shakedowns of big firms

Mckinney’s constant race baiting. Her assult on a police officer followed by her racist comments.

Deans comments about Republicans, whites and Christians.

And this is w/o even having to think about it.

The thought crime is scary. My context might be very different. If my intention is not to be racist, how can it be racist? I do not believe in unintentional guilt. What you are saying is that if I am offended by your comments - and call them racist - then you are guilty.

We disagree. I won’t accept thought crimes and will not accept that other do. I consider it a form of racism, since a white guy (George Orwell) is the one who popularlized the phrase.

There. You are trumped and can no longer use the formualation w/o being a racist. Silly,isn’t it?

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 6:50 PM
Comment #175714

Jack, you’ve become ridiculous.

A) There is no “crime” here.

B) Allen is being called to task for his speech, not his thoughts.

It is very difficult to judge intent. What we can do is look at what someone said, and place it into an appropriate context. The words and context of Allen’s speech are deplorable, which is why you keep trying to change the subject.

Sharpton, Jackson, and McKinney were all soundly rejected by Democratic voters at the polls, as is only appropriate. Their values and ideas were far from the mainstream, and they paid the price for them.

On the other hand, you and others shill and shill for Allen. If a Klan uniform were found in his closet, you folks would say it was just his Harvard graduation regalia, and Democrats wear Harvard regalia too.

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 7:23 PM
Comment #175715

Jack,

Saying the Republicans are a white, Christian party, as Dean did, is not racist. It’s a demographic observation. If that’s racism, they should shut down the Census Bureau.

Unless you can think of another example, you are way out of line suggesting Dean is a racist. You may as well just throw a dart at the phone book and call that person a racist.

Cynthia McKinney is a basically an all-around nut and got voted out. We don’t have a gulag to put her in, so she is free to wander around and be an idiot.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 7:23 PM
Comment #175717

Oh yeah, on McKinney, this is from the Atlanta Business Journal:

“McKinney has always been an oddity with Democratic leaders. An outspoken liberal who can mobilize the African-American base, she is a solid Democratic vote in Congress. Yet she has never been considered a major player, so her more controversial stands were overlooked… Prominent national Democrats either condemned her statement or distanced themselves from her rapidly.

In Georgia, the Democratic leadership was aghast. Roy Barnes was swift to react. More importantly, it made leaders realize that McKinney’s outrageous remarks could no longer be ignored. She has become an embarrassment and could become a liability.

Although they will never admit it publicly, Democratic leaders were probably active in recruiting a primary challenger to McKinney.”

Posted by: Arr-squared at August 15, 2006 7:31 PM
Comment #175718

You are not grasping what I am saying.

Public people have quite of lot of luxuries - power, money, fame… but they will always be tied to public sentiment.

Mel Gibson may or may have not be racist… Allen… who knows… but they are both being convicted, not in a court of law, but in the public arena. If public sentiment goes against you - you loose your viability (whether as a movie star or a politician.)

Personally, I prefer to go by a single rule with regards to racism: if it looks, talks and smells like racism, it is racism. I also beleive that people who can not control themselves in public are torn apart in public, then they are not public anymore.

Does that mean some innocent people will be torn down… yes, of course it will happen. Cosell’s comment is a perfect example. He may have no racial intent behind his comment (and from growing up watching him, I can see that as the most likely case) but he blurted out a comment that was racist. How can that be? Intent is private, words and actions are public. When the words get out, it’s up to the public to interpret what those words mean… and I can guarantee they (the public) will never truly beleive that the intent was different than their interpretation.

“I voted for the war before I voted against it.” There’s a very logical explanation of why that makes complete and honest sense - but that’s not what matters with the public.

That’s the nature of being public.

Humor, race, religion and sex are extremely dangerous topics. Anyone can join in a debate on anything in public - but in doing so you open yourself to interpretation outside of your control.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 7:32 PM
Comment #175722

How can Virginia, the home of so many notable Americans, elect that guy?, Posted by: cml at August 15, 2006 10:01 AM

Not very many notable Americans for a very long time, now its the home of the church of I Hate You. Foozball Allens attitude will probably help him there.

Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are both better public speakers, and more distinguished Americans than Allen

I had a donut with my coffee, early this morning, but a bag of donuts can not tell me what is a racist comment and what is an innocent remark. Assuming that a person is a foreigner because he does not look like you is racist.

Posted by: ohrealy at August 15, 2006 7:51 PM
Comment #175730

“Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are both better public speakers, and more distinguished Americans than Allen”


(LOL), so was Hitler. Your point? I can show you a HISTORY of racism and dubious acts with these two con-men. Show me a history of racism with Allen. Go ahead, look at his entire political career and give me one incident other than this ridiculous boarder line interpretation?

BTW, Jackson and Sharpton are democrats. Good luck with all that. Also BTW, when is the last time the rainbow Coalition reflected a color other than Black?

Posted by: curmudgeon-at-large at August 15, 2006 8:25 PM
Comment #175733

“Show me a history of racism with Allen”

————— google search, first link ——————

“Campaigning for governor in 1993, he admitted to prominently displaying a Confederate flag in his living room. He said it was part of a flag collection—and had been removed at the start of his gubernatorial bid. When it was learned that he kept a noose hanging on a ficus tree in his law office, he said it was part of a Western memorabilia collection. These explanations may be sincere. But, as a chief executive, he also compiled a controversial record on race. In 1994, he said he would accept an honorary membership at a Richmond social club with a well-known history of discrimination—an invitation that the three previous governors had refused. After an outcry, Allen rejected the offer.”

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 8:35 PM
Comment #175734

Hister was a distinguished American? Maybe to the right wingnuts. An elderly woman was just telling me this morning about how active the Nazis were in this country during The Great Patriotic War, even attempting to raise funds from jewish people with very german names. Did they all go away?

And Tony, tell you mother-in-law, it was Jewish lightning, not jewish fire, but whatever you do, do not do an internet search, you will be in scary territory.

Posted by: ohrealy at August 15, 2006 8:35 PM
Comment #175737

Al Shaprton
————— google search, first link ———-

“Born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1954, the Reverend Alfred “Al” Sharpton has been preaching since age four. He was licensed and ordained at age nine. In 1971, he founded the National Youth Movement and for seventeen years led the organization, registering young people to vote and giving them job opportunities. His direct-action and civil disobedience campaigns have brought attention to injustice in many areas. “

Jesse Jackson
—————— google search, first link —————

“Jackson first became involved in the Civil Rights movement while a student at North Carolina A&T. There he joined the Greensboro chapter of the Council on Racial Equality (CORE), an organization that had led early sit-ins to protest segregated lunch counters. In 1963 Jackson organized numerous marches, sit-ins, and mass arrests to press for the desegregation of local restaurants and theaters. His leadership in these events earned him recognition within the regional movement; he was chosen president of the North Carolina Intercollegiate Council on Human Rights, field director of CORE’s southeastern operations, and in 1964 served as delegate to the Young Democrats National Convention. In Chicago in 1965 Jackson was a volunteer for the Coordinating Committee of Community Organizations and organized regular meetings of local black ministers and the faculty of the Chicago Theological Seminary.”


Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 8:44 PM
Comment #175741

“And Tony, tell you mother-in-law, it was Jewish lightning, not jewish fire, but whatever you do, do not do an internet search, you will be in scary territory.”

I’m still amazed at her reaction. She had no idea that it could be taken as an insult… not, of course, after we explained it. It made sense to her once she thought it through.

Racism can live very casually in people’s lives.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 9:00 PM
Comment #175742

Tony,

Bottom line” you failed to find a racist act in Allen’s pass. Nice try. If only you guys spent as much time on the real racist. Racism is on both sides of the coin.

Would you like me to provide the skeltons in Jesses’s and Al’s closet? I live In NC and I also lived in Jessee’s hometown of Greenville SC….there are many many skeletons to choose from. Dems like revs as long as they are dems……huh?

My favorite is spitting in Whitey’s food while a student at Sterling High School. Look that one up.

JJ and Al are on the decline in prominence. They are all about generating racism in order to make a dollar. Jessee Lee Peterson is the new face of the of the Black leadership and actually is challenging the black community with personal accountability. That is what the black leadership should have been promoting for the last 20 years.

People like JJ and Al actually dull Americans to real racism because they discover racism any time a camera is near.

Posted by: curmudgeon-at-large at August 15, 2006 9:01 PM
Comment #175744

I live in NC as well. (I grew up in Brevard.)

Yes, both Jesse & Al are in steep decline… I wanted to throttle both of them over the Duke Lacrosse crap. That’s was sheer stupidity, and yes, they jumped to conclusions about that case. It has cost them.

I was not responding to support anyone there - I was simply looking at your request to provide some back ground to this.

“Racism is on both sides of the coin.”

So, name a few racists on the REP side of things? Or the IND side of things. In a post above, someone simply said racism and followed it up with a bunch of Democratic supporters (notice, I’m not saying Democrats since they are not elected.) I would have no idea how to tell them to go away… they’re calling things like they see them, which is everyone’s right.

I agree that both desensitise people to real racism, and that make real racism easier to dismiss.

Posted by: tony at August 15, 2006 9:13 PM
Comment #175749

This racist garbage has got to stop. It is so very one-sided. Look around you. There is rampant racism on all fronts. From Oprah’s exclusive “black female only” gala to the NAACP, the all-black female colleges,China Town, Little Vietnam, LULAC, are all havens of racism. Even within the havens one finds 2d and 3d tier racism. White Mexicans discriminate against Indian Mexicans. The class sytem is alive and well in other arenas. Women are subservient in the Muslim communities whether American citizens or Iraq residents.

Racism is, will, and does exist. There is no hope for it. You can hide it, lie about it, deny it. It is real. I am sick to death of it being OK to bash whites and/or Christians, but totally no-no to bash any other groups. When the rules apply to everybody regardless of race, creed, color, sex, or national origin, then the rules should be enforced and you can scream your little bitty self until your throat is raw. Until then, let the voters challenge his silly little faux pax at the polls. Bush’s mommy made the most blatantly racist and class remarks possible after Hurricane Katrina. Nobody spent a great deal of time lambasting her. It just is not worth the print until everybody, EVERYBODY, drops their prejudices for real, not just pretend to do so.

Posted by: KDScott at August 15, 2006 9:54 PM
Comment #175752

Hi all,

Even George Allen’s defenders are comparing him to the likes of Al Sharpton and Cynthia McKinney. I think that pretty much speaks for itself. So much for Pres. Allen.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 15, 2006 10:45 PM
Comment #175759

Woody

My original idea was that this was no big deal. I still think so. The reason we brought up Jackson, Sharpton etc is that these guys are overtly racist. With Allen you have to look very hard and look up the meaning of macaca (it evidently is a crab eating monkey found in Indonesia). Allen does not seem like the kind of guy to study zoology that closely.

BTW - if you want to see overt racism institutionalized look no further than your average affirmative action program. They clearly judge by the color of skin rather than content of character. Yet, like Al Sharpton nobody notices maybe because it is so obvious.

Posted by: Jack at August 15, 2006 11:05 PM
Comment #175765

Tony:

I knew you would be headed to this comment: “I said the phrase he (Cosell) used was racist.”

No you didn’t. What you said was that “Anyone referring to a professional athlete as a “little monkey” is being racist, whether they know it or not.”

Don’t try to back out of a strong position now. The point I made was to show first that it is often the people hearing the remark who are thinking its racist, even if its not. The second part was to show that even a lifetime of NON racism isn’t enough for some who will castigate someone for a single remark.

There was a guy in Washington who lost his job for using the word “niggardly” in a meeting. He was accused of being racist, even though the word has no race connotations. It means “petty or reluctant in giving or spending”. Despite having used the word correctly and in the correct context, the guy was accused of racism.

That’s an example of political correctness gone too far. Judge Allen by his totality. Someone did that above and found him lacking. I don’t know if they are correct in their finding, but at least they did some homework. YOu’ve simply called people racist for having said something that MIGHT be racist. Then you tried to back out of it. Thats called cowardice, by the way.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 16, 2006 12:17 AM
Comment #175766

Jack,

All of the Democratic party trembles before your searin’ intellect and fierce rebuttal. To my knowledge Jackson and Sharpton hold no elected office, and the fact that Mckinney has been beaten in her primary proves that we are currently in the process of purging the bad apples from the bunch. Perhaps your party should hold its candidates to a higher level and not resort to bringing up susupicious characters from our past in order to validate the actions of your current flock.

You just got flip-flopped!

Posted by: bushflipflops at August 16, 2006 12:20 AM
Comment #175796

Woody—

-“Byrd was in the KKK in the early 1940’s, or more than SIXTY YEARS ago. You think he should be purged from the Democratic Party for this reason? That would be a true inquisition.”

OK, so let me see if I have this straight. I am getting my butt chewed by YOUR liberal peers, under another thread, for not being willing to take the blame for things that happened over 200 years ago which were perpetrated by “my government”. But YOU are making excuses for Byrd’s racism because it happened 60 years ago and therefore doesn’t count for anything TODAY!! And I seem to remember a time many years ago when David Duke was lambasted by liberals and the press for his racism from that time period, despite his declaration that he knew now that he was wrong. It didn’t seem to matter to the libs then that his mistakes occurred “years ago”.

You guys are so very good at dragging up other people’s past mistakes to use against them, and then making excuses for your own.

Interesting how you libs can flip-flop back and forth in defense of your own, whenever the mood strikes you.

“Jackson and Sharpton, well, they are who they are. I’m not going to defend them or apologize for them.”

Well, maybe Allen is just being “who he is”. If you can’t defend or apologize for Sharpton and Jackson, then get off Allen’s case, and get down off your high horse.

Liberal hypocrisy cracks me up.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 16, 2006 5:25 AM
Comment #175797

cml—

-“To deny the Republican party, the party of Lincoln, is racist is to live in a non-real world. America is racist. Just ask a black American.”

No, America is not racist. Certain people in America are racist to include Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, as well as possibly Senator Allen and others (just as certain people…can you guess who I am referring to…in America are obviously immature and inexperienced but that does not reflect on the country as a whole).

I have been the victim of black on white racism, so your comment about “…just ask a black American” is ridiculous.

I take deep offense to that blatant mischaracterization of myself and my peers. I am not racist, and the many black and Chinese friends, roommates, acquintances, and girlfriends I have and have known would agree.

-“So if Al Sharpton and Jesse get a little hyperbolic at times, so what? We whites deserve a little of what we hand out.”

So I guess you think 2 wrongs do make a right? What a crock…racism is wrong no matter who does it or why. Reverse racism is not OK just because you think we “deserve a little of what we hand out”. Maybe YOU do!! Speak for yourself…I don’t hand out anything.

Typical liberal white male guilt in action.

Comments such as your’s make it VERY hard to refrain from “critiqueing the messenger”…
especially when the messenger obviously doesn’t know what the hell he or she is talking about.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 16, 2006 5:47 AM
Comment #175798

DaveR,

I don’t blame you for anything that happened over two hundred years ago. (I’m not sure what you have in mind. Slavery ended in the 1860’s.) I’m blaming George Allen for what he did very recently.

David Duke wasn’t even alive in the 1940’s.

I didn’t defend Jackson and Sharpton. Many of guys are defending George Allen for what you call his “past mistakes”. In this case, the past was last Friday. Talk about youthful indiscretions! I guess George is a different man now.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 16, 2006 7:37 AM
Comment #175801

Jack,

The possibility that “macaca” was intended as a racial epithet only makes his conduct slightly more offense. He was still picking on a guy for what he presumed to be his foreign origins. I don’t see how you can defend that in this day and age.

You live in Virginia, so I guess it’s up to you. I don’t see how it to good for your state to have a guy like Allen representing it.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 16, 2006 8:07 AM
Comment #175804

JBD -

“YOu’ve simply called people racist for having said something that MIGHT be racist. Then you tried to back out of it. Thats called cowardice, by the way.”

Wow - way to stick to your guns an completely ignore my point. Let’s see if I can boil it down even futher - maybe you’ll grasp it then.

Racism is public, intent is personal.

If you say an racist remark in public, you are a racist. Your choice for saying it, the public’s choice to hang you out to dry.

It’s called reality.

You keep trying to find excuses and rationale for saying something that sounds racial, but isn’t. But who are you arguing to? me? What the hell am I going to do to fix Cosell’s career? (Hint: It’s not a personal thing. He was tried and convicted in public.)

The point: I see no excuse for someone with his exposure to say something so reprehinsibly stupid. 1. Monkey is a racial slur, especially when used to describe a black person, 2. he was talking about a professioanl athlete, not some cute 4 yr old on the monkey bars.

The decision: Cosell is a racist. (Read all of his appologies and writings to the contrary, it hasn’t matter one bit. Intent in personal, racism in public.)

Result: Anyone who calls a professional athlete a “little monkey” is a racist. (Don’t trust me, try it yourself.)

I can not prove he’s a racist, as some have asked, but neither can they prove he is not. My opinion, in the given circumstances, I can not see any plausible way to use “little monkey” when talking about a professional adult and anything other than derogatory and therefore racist. I feel bad when I see replays of Cosell trying to explain what he meant, and it seems he is a good person. But so is my mother-in-law, and she’s racist despite being a generally sincere person.

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 8:35 AM
Comment #175806

“”Judge Allen by his totality. “

That’s not how it works. He has nothing is his past to point to of ridding the world of racism, and he was known to have a Confederate Flag in his living and belonging to a historically racial Country Club. He has no alibi…

and the main point:

He said something stupid in front of a camera - even worse, he said it to the camera man. And now that comment is biting him in the ass. Bravo! (Reality sucks for stupid people.)

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 8:47 AM
Comment #175809

tony:

Help me understand where you stand…..now. First Cosell was a racist, then he said something racist but wasn’t a racist, now he’s racist again? You do a great Kerry imitation, by the way.

I get your point though—-its just that your point is so entrenched in political correctness that its horribly wrong. Here’s what you said:

He may have no racial intent behind his commentu> (and from growing up watching him, I can see that as the most likely case) but he blurted out a comment that was racist. How can that be? Intent is private, words and actions are public. When the words get out, it’s up to the public to interpret what those words mean.”

The underline sentences say it all. This is the victimhood mentality rolled into the racism issue. If I walk into a group of kids and say, “Hi boys and girls” as a greeting, I can be considered racist and sexist, IFFFF they think I am. I’m racist for using the racially charged term “boys” (and for having failed to consider that the two young black children would be offended) and sexist for using the term “girls”. It wouldn’t matter that I used the terms without any such intent—the victims could provide that intent for me.

Having this mindset, you actually allow racism to fester. Cosell, for instance, had a lifetime of not being racist. His comment was not racist at all, but an accurate description of how Garrett was slippery and quick. The fact is that Cosell had also used the same term in describing a white receiver a couple years prior, showing that the term carried no racial distinctions….other than for those listeners who chose to see the racial distinctions.

Those people are the ones who noticed the color—they were not color blind. I play ball with a number of men—some of whom are black. I call them all “boys”….as in “Hey boys, let’s get goin here.” No one sees it as a racist comment. In your world, you’d accept the victimhood of a person who felt I was being racist, though in my eyes, they are ballplayers—not black ballplayers or white ballplayers. You see, I’d be the one who is colorblind there. The so called victim—-and those like you who would support their claims—-you’d be the ones focusing on color. And that leads to oversized claims of racism when there is none. And that, my friend, hurts the real claims of racism.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 16, 2006 9:03 AM
Comment #175811

Being from Virginia, I believe George Allen’s comments were intentionally racist. They were minor enough that they could be blown off if detected yet they told the racist redneck portion of the state that he was one of them-cementing his support with that demographic. Just like Trent Lott paying homage to Strom Thurmond.

It’s not very complicated.

Posted by: Bill at August 16, 2006 9:16 AM
Comment #175826

Please don’t waste people’s time saying that only Republians are racist.

Now, now, how many times has a Democrat made a racist (or improper) comment and you libs totally ignore it? Jackson, Sharpton, Dean and Hillary have all been guilty, but you never seem to make a big deal about that. You’ve watered down true racism that nobody cares anymore.

This may seem racist but don’t be the pot calling the kettle black.

Posted by: mac6115cd at August 16, 2006 10:20 AM
Comment #175828

JBOD,

There is no excuse for calling a black person a “monkey” under any circumstances. Period. I don’t care if the person is wearing a t-shirt that says, “Call me a monkey. I won’t be offended.” It just isn’t done.

I think what Tony is saying is that you can’t naively accept good intentions as an excuse in these cases, because when someone says “I didn’t mean anything bad by that” it is impossible to prove them wrong.

Someone can call a black person a “n*gger” and claim that they thought it was a cool thing to do. Maybe the person is honestly that stupid. Who knows. You have to judge by the action.

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 16, 2006 10:23 AM
Comment #175830

I believe George Allen’s comments were intentionally racist. They were minor enough that they could be blown off if detected yet they told the racist redneck portion of the state that he was one of them-cementing his support with that demographic, posted by Posted by: Bill at August 16, 2006 09:16 AM

You are exactly right, and CBS Newsradio was airing the tape this morning, so I guess the story is not yet going away.

Posted by: ohrealy at August 16, 2006 10:35 AM
Comment #175831

Mac,

The strength of the Republican Party in the south is built on the flight of southern segregationist Democrats. It started with Harry Truman’s integration of the Armed Forces and Strom Thurmond’s anti-integration presidential candidacy, (Remember Trent Lott’s recent loving comments about Strom?) This racist undercurrent continues to this day. George Allen’s comments are in keeping with this tradition. You can deny your own racism but you can’t deny history.

In fact you’re probably not racist, but you’re in the same party-and I don’t see you telling racists not to vote Republican…

Posted by: Bill at August 16, 2006 10:38 AM
Comment #175838

“In your world, you’d accept the victimhood of a person who felt I was being racist, though in my eyes, they are ballplayers—not black ballplayers or white ballplayers. You see, I’d be the one who is colorblind there. The so called victim—-and those like you who would support their claims—-you’d be the ones focusing on color. And that leads to oversized claims of racism when there is none. And that, my friend, hurts the real claims of racism.”

JBD -

You do not know my world, so why comment on it? That’s an argument based on ignorance… again, you do not know my world. You assume to know my world by projecting your beliefs and prejudgements on it, but it’s no closer to my world than if you were making complete guesses.

One major difference - I don’t judge public personalities from a personal perspective. No one knows what goes on in their head, so how could you ever judge them like you would judge a friend or family member? This is very much akin to holding an actor culpable for their charcter’s traits. I know people do this all the time, but it’s completely irrelevant.

I see public figures and their public personna. If they appear racist, or incompetant, then that’s a direct reflection of their public personna, and that’s how I judge them. If they foster incompetance or racism, then they are labelled as such and they pay the price. That’s not simply the way things should be, it is they way things are. (This, I think, is very close to the argument behind the movie “Wag The Dog.”)

If a public person is corrupt, then that person (in public) is vilified as being corrupt. I could care less what happens to them on a personal level… it has no impact on me personally. How could it. I don’t know the guy, I’ve ever talked to the guy… so trying to react in a personal way is rediculous. Cosell might be living a grand life and working to bring harmony to the world between the races or maybe he’s already dead. He is no longer a public figure, so why should I be so arrogant or misled as to think I should have an opinion of him personally?

Maybe this comes from my professional life… who knows (Film). I think this argument is very similar to people arguing over truth in advertising. (HAHAHAHAHAHA! Sorry, but that’s such an insane proposition that to try to make an argument it is the very definition of insanity.) This is also why I laugh my ass of at people’s outrage at the recent doctored images. To me, they showed a very lazy or pathetic skill with basic professional competence. To me, the idea of a photographer taking a picure without trying to infer some sort of message (or for the paranoid - agenda) is obsurd. Most professionals show in RAW mode - solely for it’s ability to make basic alterations and enhancements to the photos. People want only reality with their media? Yea right. Reality are people’s home movies and vacation snap shots, and no one wants to watch that other than the people who took shot those images.

Do you beleive in reality TV?

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 11:25 AM
Comment #175852

tony:

I comment on what you write. I make the assumption that your words indicate your beliefs. If you do not want your words to count as indicating what you think, or what “your world” is, then don’t write them as commentary of what you believe.

I simply used your words to show what you believe, and why I think its wrong. If you truly don’t want me to read what you write and comment back on your opinions, then perhaps a forum such as Watchblog is not the place for you.

Woody:

Context is everything. Yet you’ve ignored it completely.

I showed you how I called a black man ‘boy’. Taken like that, it would be fair to consider me a racist. Yet when you see the context (a group of white and black men whom I address equally as ‘boys’), you then see there is no racial element to my comment. Same thing with Cosell’s use of the term ‘monkey’. He used it equally with a white and a black player—his use of the phrase was to describe how wiry and quick the receivers were. Were it a racial thing, he’d not have used it with both races, since the terminology wouldn’t fit.

Context is everything. If I say I’m so mad I could kill you, does that mean I’m close to murder. Possibly, but most likely not. If you look to my background and see lots of violence and mayhem, then the context presents itself differently than if I am a law abiding non-violent person.

I don’t know if Allen has a history of racially insensitive remarks. If he does, then this potentially racial statement forms a pattern. If there is no pattern, then its an isolated incident which Allen has apologized for.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 16, 2006 12:15 PM
Comment #175855

“I comment on what you write. I make the assumption that your words indicate your beliefs. If you do not want your words to count as indicating what you think, or what “your world” is, then don’t write them as commentary of what you believe.

I simply used your words to show what you believe, and why I think its wrong. If you truly don’t want me to read what you write and comment back on your opinions, then perhaps a forum such as Watchblog is not the place for you.”

I have no issue with you reading and commenting on what I write here. That’s kind of the point.

My point to you was that you started telling me what my world was… and that just seems kind of ridiculous. You comment on what I wrote, and I said you weren’t grasping my point. Then you say “In your world…” Can you see why that’s presumptuous, at best? You are free to presume whatever you want to, but to leap from commenting on what I wrote to making commentary on “my world” is obsurd.

I agree with somethings you write, and disagree with somethings. That’s all I have to go on, so that’s all I can comment on. You say I’m being a coward by not standing up to an original comment I made. I’m saying that I stand behind that comment because it is the truth (in the public’s mind) and that the idea that anyone here could truthfully or accurately discuss a public figure’s mental state or personal/private belief is abstract and irrelevant.

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 12:35 PM
Comment #175861

“I showed you how I called a black man ‘boy’. Taken like that, it would be fair to consider me a racist. Yet when you see the context (a group of white and black men whom I address equally as ‘boys’), you then see there is no racial element to my comment.”

Context is everything, but you’re ignoring the context of public discourse. Everyone in the public lives within 8 second soundbites. In order to live within the public’s eye successfully, you absolutely have to conform to this idea. Is it fair? Is it right? Might as well ask if it’s green. It is… that’s all that matters. Allen and Cosell (who has had more public attention in the single post than if the past 15 years) both violated that concept and both complained that it wasn’t fair and the public should try to understand what they truly meant. Too little too late.

Am I endorsing this? No, why would any sane person feel that this is right? But it is the way things are, and have been for quite some time. Cosell will always be discussed in the terms of racial discourse - and that’s because he said something stupid. There hasn’t been a time for the past 40 years where you could call a grown black man a monkey and not expect it to be taken as racist. (Can you think of a socially beneficial way of calling a grown black man a monkey?) So, Cosell is a racist by default. The jury is still out on Allen, but I can guarantee that we will see this clip tossed around until after the elections.

Kerry said “I voted for the war, before I voted against it.” Again, there’s a very logical explanation for this statement, but who cares? Kerry got burned because he forgot what world he was living in… the public world. It’s based on sound bites, and the only context that exists is the context contained in the single moment.

Is that a sick way to live? Is that a pathetic way to rely on information to make vital decisions? No matter how you answer, that doesn’t change reality… at least not for now. If you want to discuss ways to change this, then I’m all ears. But as the the racial argument, it’s irrelevant.

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 12:52 PM
Comment #175866

Tony,

To give you the context on Gearge Allen he had been trying to live down the fact that he wore the Stars and Bars in his High School annual picture and keept a noose in his office as Governor. Those familiar with Virginia’s past understand the symbolism.

Personally, with quite a few ancestors that were on the losing side of the War of Northern Agression, I wish the Stars and Bars were not associated with racism. Unfortunately, it is. You may not be racist but you hang out with them…

A man is known by the company he keeps.

Posted by: Bill at August 16, 2006 1:29 PM
Comment #175867

This thread is represenative of our new name “The United Staes of the Offended”. It seems to me we are mistaken the attitude of “the victim” with real racism.

Example: I live in an area that is equally black and white. I see 10 year old kids pulling out the race card whenever they must obey a rule that a white kid must obey. One guess where this attitude comes from.
These children are being taught that if a person is white they are a racist. If white person taught their child that all black people are lazy, Jesses and Al would descend like seagulls.
I still rember when the movie “White men can’t Jump” came out not a word was uttered. Now if the title had been “Black men can’t play hockey”….you guessed it….Al and Jesse would have had a field day.

The point is, if we look hard enough one can find racism everywhere and with every people group. Whites tend to get the banner placed on them first and foremost which is blatant racism.

Posted by: curmudgeon-at-large at August 16, 2006 1:32 PM
Comment #175870

tony:

You are simply accepting something that you say is wrong as being “the way it is”. I refuse to do so. I understand that one needs to more carefully choose his/her words these days, but I refuse to bow down to the god of political correctness just because that’s “the way it is”.

Cosell is not a racist, despite your claim. He said something that intellectually lazy people took as racist. That in no way makes him a racist, any more than the guy I mentioned who used the word “niggardly”. That guy is not a racist, despite being accused of having used a racist term. The racism in that account was undeniably on the side of the listeners.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at August 16, 2006 1:38 PM
Comment #175871

It is amazing to me how white people of this country never quite get it, no matter what political party.(Democrat, Republican, Green Party, Libertarian, etc.) Being a black man I have observed white people of every political background saying or doing something racist and many ethinic groups. It amazes me that caucasians can manage Fortune 500 companies, build emaculate buildings, govern states, and do so many other things that show their intelligtence but when it comes to race and being sensitive to other human beings that happen to be of a different ethic background, you simply become ignorant. We continue to have a serious problem of race in this country. I don’t ignore all of the progresses we’ve made in this area but it amazes me the the ignorance level is still very high. I believe that anyone can be prejudice no matter their ethnicity but the term racist is losely used by many people. The formula for being racist anywhere is prejudice + power. It is too much information to explain in this blog but briefly it is understood by many sociology experts in order for a person to be racist there specific ethnicity has to have the power in that country to influence the perceptions of the majority. That ethnic group needs to control the media, education system, law enforcement, and the government. Caucasian have the power and influence of all of these therefore they can show blacks being arrested all the to create the perception that we are criminal for example. There is much more to this formula but I just don’t have the time to go into it. Yes, Jesses Jackson has made prejudice statements that I personally disagree with but he cannot be racist. I believe that this country has been in exsistance long enough that someone of any culture should know if they are saying something that is racially inappropriate. All in all I believe Senator George Allen is a very intellegent man and knew exactly what he was saying.

Posted by: Joe at August 16, 2006 1:52 PM
Comment #175874

Racism = prejudice + power.

I’ve never heard it expressed so succinctly. That is a very powerful insight.

Posted by: Trent at August 16, 2006 2:15 PM
Comment #175875

i dont think i have seen a post on here that mentiones the gov of mass - mitt romney use of the word tar baby to describe the big dig fiasco in his state. immediately following his comments, a huge outcry from so called black “leaders” characterized the remark as racist (tar baby referring to a black person in a negative way). The intellectual lazinesss argument works well here, as anyone with two brain cells that arent fighting with each other knows that in that particular context the phrase “tar baby” was used to describe a sticky mess. But it is so much easier to use racism as a political weapon when it serves your cause…

As I mentioned earlier, my wife is black/korean and I have experienced - along with her, true racism. However, we both stand in agreement that the political correctness attitude has gone too far, and the lable “another republican racist” is damaging to the overall understanding and remediation of TRUE racist behavior (which is condemnable)

Posted by: b0mbay at August 16, 2006 2:18 PM
Comment #175876

“That guy is not a racist, despite being accused of having used a racist term.”

Only a fool would use an unknown word - such a niggardly - and expect anything other than outrage. That’s the simple reality of things. It works for some people and against others. Were you outragged at the treatment Kerry recieved from the “voted against the war after I voted for the war” statement?

Kerry was potrayed as an idiot and a “flip flopper” when any intelligent person knew for a fact that that was not the case. It benefitted Bush greatly… same as the attack on Kerry’s war record. It was unfair, but Kerry failed in making the truth known, so the truth became irrelevant.

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 2:18 PM
Comment #175882

Joe, I agree with most of what you said about racism. Jesse Jackson, while not a hero of mine, has been a positive figure for many. He is also polarizing and ethically challenged at times. He has said racist things. Is he a racist? I don’t know him, I couldn’t possibly say.

I do believe reverse racism exists, as well, and is born of the same ignorance.

Posted by: gergle at August 16, 2006 2:37 PM
Comment #175885

Just a good thought to end this discussion on:

“It’s not the names people call you that matter. It’s the names you answer to.”

M.L. King

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 2:49 PM
Comment #175889

I understand the above quote and what I think you mean by quoting it. But I’m sorry I just have a problem with the “sticks and stones my break your bones….” mentally. True, people should hold themselves with a certain dignity but noone should be called a racially demeening name no matter what the ethnicity. Many people in this country make statements that in summary mean “just ignore them” but I refuse to just set back and allow people to be cruel and mean. If you dislike someone or don’t argree with what ther are doing, as the Senator did with the young man, then just state that. Name calling is just childish, mean, and ignorant.

Posted by: Joe at August 16, 2006 2:59 PM
Comment #175890

Woody:
“In my book, even the “welcome to America” part was offensive.”

Yes, the fact that he said: “macaca” and then followed that up with: “welcome to America” this is exactly how we know that Allen’s comments were PURELY RACIST. No getting around it. The Republican’s here defending him, or trying to act like people are getting too hung up on the first term, KNOW this. They know it, but are so partisan, they simply don’t want to denounce him for it. That sickens me.

“He was still picking on a guy for what he presumed to be his foreign origins. I don’t see how you can defend that in this day and age.”

Seems the man has a very long history of picking on people. Look at these horrible things his own sister had to say about him in a book she wrote.
Senator George Allen is a Racist, AND all-around Assh*le.

Posted by: Adrienne at August 16, 2006 3:11 PM
Comment #175893

Joe -

I absolutely agree with you. People who use racism deserve to be shunned - publicly and privately. (That’s my personal opinion.) The private issue is more subjective and requires a more intimate involvement with the people in any given situation.

I’m amazed that people continue to cry foul about “thought police” and attack the idea of racism because “white people are subjected to racism too!”

The reason for living the above quote is you have to deal with reality and stay sane, and you have to weed out the assholes as best you can. I would never suggest allowing racism to exist where you have influence to stop it… but those times where it;s out of your control…

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 3:13 PM
Comment #175947

so by your definition al sharpton and jessie jackson should be publicly shunned. how bout mitch romney? he wasnt being racist, but a phrase he said could be taken as such…after all, it is his responsibility to know what everyone else is thinking…right?

Posted by: b0mbay at August 16, 2006 7:46 PM
Comment #175964

“after all, it is his responsibility to know what everyone else is thinking…right?”

You’re exactly right… that’s exactly what I’m saying. Come on, why take things to the extreme to disprove something. People know what would be considered racists and what might be considered questionable. Use at your own risk.

Do you honestly think that calling a professional athlete a “little monkey” should be acceptable? Can you at least see where people would consider that racist?

Posted by: tony at August 16, 2006 8:59 PM
Comment #175985

Woody—

You said-“David Duke wasn’t even alive in the 1940’s.”

I never said he was, but he was alive in the 60’s. I am sure you knew what I meant. Why are you attempting to deflect the discussion? I can tell from your writing that you are more intelligent than that, so don’t play the “dumb” card in an vain attempt to change the subject.

You said-“I don’t blame you for anything that happened over two hundred years ago.”

Again, I didn’t say YOU did…I said your liberals peers did. My exact words were:

“OK, so let me see if I have this straight. I am getting my butt chewed by YOUR liberal peers, under another thread, for not being willing to take the blame for things that happened over 200 years ago which were perpetrated by “my government” But YOU are making excuses for Byrd’s racism because it happened 60 years ago and therefore doesn’t count for anything TODAY!!”

Like I asked someone the other day…did you READ my post…I mean really read it? Are you responding to what I wrote, or just responding to what you THINK I meant? Don’t try to “read into” my words. I said exactly what I meant and it was fairly clear, at least to someone not trying to find some alternate or hidden meaning. Just take my words at face value.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 16, 2006 11:19 PM
Comment #175992

Mark—

-“Cosell is a racist. (Read all of his appologies and writings to the contrary, it hasn’t matter one bit. Intent in personal, racism in public.)”

So would it be safe to assume that you disagree with those in this thread who have defended Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson for THEIR public racism? Does your statement above, about apologies not mattering, apply to Jesse and Al also? Do you agree or disagree with cml that “we whites deserve a little of what we hand out”, as he put it?

According to your own words, I would expect that you would condemn Sharpton, Byrd and Jesse Jackson as equally as you would Allen and David Duke. Is that a fair assessment?


-“The point: I see no excuse for someone with his exposure to say something so reprehensibly stupid. 1. Monkey is a racial slur, especially when used to describe a black person, 2. he was talking about a professioanl athlete, not some cute 4 yr old on the monkey bars.”

So let me ask you this. When one black man calls another black man “my nigger” or some variation/combination using the “N” word, does that make him a racist?

“Nigger” is clearly and universally considered a racial slur, so by your logic that black man using that word to describe another black man, regardless of the context or circumstances, would in fact be a racist…against his own race yet!!!

And if I call my child a “monkey” because they like to climb trees or hang on the “monkey bars”, am I using a racial slur against them, even if their skin is white? Is the use of the term “monkey bars” to describe that ubiqitous piece of playground equipment a racial slur?

Just how far do you want to take this? Where does it stop? According to your way of thinking (and that of many others in here) any word or phrase can be a racial slur, just by the mere action of declaring it to be so, especially if your skin is any color other than white!

The real irony of this whole discussion is that the Constitution of the United States gives me and you and every other citizen of this country the right to free speech, TO INCLUDE the right to use racial slurs!

Now, admittedly, one would have to be pretty stupid or suicidal to routinely go around slinging the “N” word, or any other slur, but the fact remains that if you choose to do so, that is your right!

But be prepared to suffer the circumstances of your stupid mistake, be it getting blackballed from politics (ooops, was that a racial slur), or getting your a— whupped in an alley!

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 16, 2006 11:57 PM
Comment #176029

“The real irony of this whole discussion is that the Constitution of the United States gives me and you and every other citizen of this country the right to free speech, TO INCLUDE the right to use racial slurs!”

Absolutely. This has NOTHING to do with with free speech and everything to do with the FREE MARKETPLACE of ideas. Say something racial… goodbye (or not…?) You see, it’s society’s reaction that counts in all of this. It used to expected to have separate water fountains and bathrooms for each race… and a white 20 yr old could call a black 60 yr old “boy.” And when white people said that those little black babies were “cute little monkeys” there was an excepted inference of “lack of evolution.”

Today is different, and I hope everyone posting here can see that it is. But we have not really improved society as much as made it tolerable (lot’s of work still to do.) Now we need to continue that progression.

Anyone who thinks racism isn’t truly alive today probably speaks a good deal about “reverse discrimination.” Yea… right. Us “whities have it REAL tough.” It’s not as though people don’t push racism in our direction, it’s simply that we have the wherewithal to ignore it and live our lives normally. Anyone who thinks that Hispanics and Blacks start off their lives on the same footing as whites needs to get out of their subdivision a little more.

Does that mean I accept racism if aimed at the white people? No… never. But this isn’t about what I accept or what I call racism. It’s society that makes these decisions.

Do I think it’s OK for black people to call each other “my nigga?” Not really for me to decide… it seems that it’s become accepted today for that word to be used in certain forms of communication. Between blacks in casual conversation and music, OK - in a professional setting - absolutely not. But - back to my original point, it’s up to society to decide…

This isn’t about making laws of transgression… it’s about society’s reaction to racism. People can loose their jobs and get longer jail time for racially motivated actions, as well they should, but this whole thread has been about public people loosing their viability because of racial remarks or actions. It’s society that decides what is racial and what is not. We’ve erred on the side of accepting racism in the past, and maybe society will over react to questionable “racism” today… but it that prevents slipping back into past allowances for racial actions and words, then that’s the price to pay.

As far as Jesse and Al go - WHO CARES!? OK, they’ve done stupid things in the past and they will do stupid things in the future… but they’ve also done exceptional things, and that’s the difference. Society has accepted them, maybe as the fringe of the racial discussion, but they are always around to call attention to injustices - even if they don’t really exist. One day they might loose all of their credibility and when they shout — people and the media will ignore then. Today, bottom line for these 2 guys - they have played their cards in such a way as to keep some viability in society, so they are still around.

Posted by: tony at August 17, 2006 7:23 AM
Comment #176036

Tony,
I agree with everything you’ve just said. As far as blacks using the “n word” as a term of endearment, I totally disagree. The youth of today have taken something derogatory and made a play thing of it and I feel this word shouldn’t be used by anyone. This is an issue that blacks need to discuss among ourselves and come to an understanding and argreement. Until that day comes caucasians should understand that this word will never be accepted as okay to say to blacks. I think this is common sense.

I watched an ABC news program last night and they played the tape of the Senator calling the Indian gentleman “macaca”. It was evident to me that the Senator didn’t mean this as a joke whether he knew what the word meant or now. His tone was very sarcastic and this was not by accident. After this incident he has become very apologetic and apparently has met with various leaders from India to apologize to them face to face. I am a forgiving person but I get tired of seeing political officials make dumb remarks. This Senator should know better and I believe he does. The sad thing is that a person of his caliber will be reelected and in a few years people will barely remember what he said.

Posted by: Joe at August 17, 2006 8:30 AM
Comment #176045

Joe,

Judgement Day will come if he runs for the GOP nomination, as everyone expected him to do before this incident. The knock against him before this was that he was “too much like George Bush.” Now it’s going to be “like George Bush, only overtly racist.”

Posted by: Woody Mena at August 17, 2006 8:51 AM
Comment #176145

“The incident also has raised questions about Allen’s readiness for the 2008 campaign. University of Virginia political commentator Larry J. Sabato said, “It was a clumsy stupid gaffe, just an amazing thing for a supposedly veteran politician to do.” Especially since Allen was quite obviously being filmed at the time.”

—- my point exactly

http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/story?id=2322630&page=1

Posted by: tony at August 17, 2006 3:54 PM
Comment #176238

I have read the evidence presented on thie blog and am ready to pass judgement.

George Allen is a racist asshole.

Posted by: darren159 at August 17, 2006 10:49 PM
Comment #176260

Tony—

-“…but they are always around to call attention to injustices - even if they don’t really exist…”

Well, thank God for that!! I sure wouldn’t want those non-existent injustices to go unnoticed… might keep me awake at night!!!

-“Does that mean I accept racism if aimed at the white people? No… never. But this isn’t about what I accept or what I call racism. It’s society that makes these decisions…Do I think it’s OK for black people to call each other “my nigga?” Not really for me to decide… it seems that it’s become accepted today for that word to be used in certain forms of communication. Between blacks in casual conversation and music, OK - in a professional setting - absolutely not. But - back to my original point, it’s up to society to decide…”

What a copout!! Way to waffle out of taking any responsibility onto yourself. “It is up to society…not me”. In another words…its OK for a black man to use “my nigga” because they have decided its OK…but don’t YOU dare cross that line because they haven’t said it is OK for YOU white boy!!

Bullcrap!! It is either OK for everyone…or NOT OK for anyone. You can’t say is is a racial slur if I use it, and not a racial slur if someone of color uses it. There is no grey area here. That is like saying that “f-ck” is unacceptable if a 15 year old child says it, but acceptable if an adult says it. NOT!! It is either a bad word, or it isn’t. There is no magic line one can cross into “acceptable land”, where all is forgiven.


-“As far as Jesse and Al go - WHO CARES!? OK, they’ve done stupid things in the past and they will do stupid things in the future… but they’ve also done exceptional things, and that’s the difference.”

And once again a display of the unique liberal ability to make excuses for the horrible behavior of THEIR favorite [untouchable] people while condemning others for the same behavior.

So by your arguement, I could (for instance) give 100 million dollars to various children’s charities and then molest my neighbor’s kid, because as long as I do something “exceptional” that gives me carte blanche to do something repugnant as well. Good to know. I will use that as a defense at my trial…will you be there to testify on my behalf?

What a ridiculous statement.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 2:31 AM
Comment #176269

DaveR -

Way to read in your prejudices into my words. You do not know my world (think I’ve said this before) so for you to guess what is in my mind or my world is “bullcrap!!” You don’t know, so why bother - argue the point.

My point is racism is a social mindset - it changes and makes it own rules as it goes along. Of course, I decide for myseld what is rasist, but that hardly matters to anyone else, other than the fact that it is a very small part of the social conscious.

Please, feel free to use my arguments in a court of law after molesting your neighbor’s kid. It worked wonders for the Catholic preists… but for some reason, I doubt it will be as successful as you hope. But hey, ya never know till ya try… right. I won’t be there - I don’t hang out with child molesters, just a personal choice.

Back to the main point - public figures are tried and convicted (or excused) of racial slurs in the public. Trying to make it personal only clouds the reality of what is happening.

Posted by: tony at August 18, 2006 7:33 AM
Comment #176270

And before anyone starts talking about racism beign very personal - it can and usually is. But - it’s not in this case. No one here was there when Allen said his words (or Cosell.) No one knows them personally or their victims personally. To try and make something that is solely public into something personal is insane.

Posted by: tony at August 18, 2006 8:12 AM
Comment #176272

tony—

-“Way to read in your prejudices into my words.”

Where exactly did I do that?

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 8:29 AM
Comment #176274

tony—

All I did was reposnd to what you wrote…nothing more.

And now who (that would be you) is presuming to know what goes on in whose world…and mind (that would be me)?

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 8:31 AM
Comment #176275

tony—

-“Please, feel free to use my arguments in a court of law after molesting your neighbor’s kid. It worked wonders for the Catholic preists… but for some reason, I doubt it will be as successful as you hope.”

You are right…your arguements won’t be successful as a defense…because they are bullsh-t. Thanks for making my point for me.

DaveR

Posted by: DaveR at August 18, 2006 8:34 AM
Comment #176279

Tony,

Many conservatives are ignorant when it comes to humanity and simply being nice to your felllow brother. They preach about values and family but forget about love and tolerance. I’ve never understood why hatred and intolerance exists. Life is so much easier when you accept people and look for peace rather than a fight. Do you ever look a a conservative. Most of them don’t smile. This is not a stereotype its simply an observation. It seems like they are mad at the world. Always ready to go to war and bomb someone. It just seems unhealthy to be full of dislike and hatred. It easier to love people for who they are. Especially if they are not hurting you. Excuse me if this seems like bleeding heart liberalism but we will never evovle to our potential when we continue to see our differences as weaknesses and not strengths. Conservatives are quick to put regulations on immigration or tell people to go back to their country when most Americans roots lay elsewhere. The depth of ignorance amazes me daily.

Posted by: Joe at August 18, 2006 8:53 AM
Comment #176347

Joe -

“The depth of ignorance amazes me daily.”

I wish I was still amazed… mostly just annoyed lately. Conservatives do seem very angry (almost as if it happened here recently…hmmmm???) I have no idea why they would choose to live such an angry life. It’s not that they disagree with what others say - it’s as if they take dissent personally.

(They are fun to toy with if you’re in the mood.)

Posted by: tony at August 18, 2006 4:22 PM
Comment #176368

Allen was probably drunk.

Posted by: ohrealy at August 18, 2006 8:01 PM
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