Kudos to Obama and Gibbs for looking beyond racism for Wilson’s outburst. Jimmy Carter should use this teaching moment. However inappropriate Wilson’s outburst may have been, it becomes almost racist itself to deny any other motivation especially when there is such a sharp divide in policy and opinion.
How much easier it is to cry racism and demonize the person than to address the issues themselves. Crying racism has become the desperate tool for the intellectually bankrupt.
It is especially hypocritical coming from Jimmy Carter given his descent into anti-Semtism.
There is a new racism and Carter is practicing it. It is the racism of condescension and arrogance. Like the old racism it is intolerant, but it is exceptionally intolerant if the object of their patronization strays from their precise ideological mindset. Hell hath no fury like an unappreciated liberal.
When you hold a single group to a standard that you hold no other group to then you are bigoted to that group. When you give voice to the most extreme elements of any group as generally representative in order to paint the worst picture you can you are practicing bigotry. When you demonize a group for individual actions you are practicing bigotry. When you find people with the other group who agree with you and use them as vindication of your prejudice no matter how unrepresentative they are you are practicing bigotry.
“I think it is unprecedented to attack a president, wishing he were dead, and equating him with animals and Adolf Hitler” Carter said. Was Carter deaf to the endless invectives hurled against Bush during his tenure? It was bad enough to inspire fellow Democrat Zell Miller’s book, “A Deficit of Decency.” If someone had cried ‘liar’ from the floor when George Bush was addressing Congress, do we honestly think the opposition would have called for censure? Even if, had it been a black man yelling ‘liar’ would moral supremacists and snide NYT columnists be adding unsaid words to make it racist?
We must acknowledge that racism exists, but we must also be realistic and acknowledge it is much much less of an issue that it was 50 years ago.
I almost prefer the old racists to the new racists because they were at least honest with themselves and you knew where you stood. The new racists are so blinded by their ideology and arrogance that they cannot recognize their own bigotry. This is painfully clear in the notorious video where Barbara Boxer addresses the head of the black Chamber of Commerce president. See it here.
I am certain that many voted against Obama primarily because he was a black man. I am also certain that many voted for him primarily because he was a black man, and those were not limited to those of his own race. There are many whites, even conservatives, who are influenced by extended feelings of black guilt, not without some justification.
Many voters looked beyond his relationships and radical associations and even positions they disapproved of hoping that these issues would move to the center as most presidents do. But the Democratic Party’s dominance made his ambitions more attainable. I believe he misread his mandate and that is why there is such push back. It’s the policies, not his race.
Many conservatives who voted against him were openly gratified that at least his election crossed an important milestone in America’s racial history. We should celebrate our racial progress without forgetting the past, but replacing one bigotry with another is not progress.
Bigotry is killed by respect, not patronization. Respect requires listening and understanding, not necessarily agreement.
When everyone is racist, then effectively no one is. If we want to end bigotry then we should stop using it for political posturing.