OK, so the media lied their butts off about what Bill Clinton said or did. The impression is what matters. I came from a blog thread where a few people were making statements barely within the boundaries of civil discourse about black voters. I dont' even want to repeat the words, they made me so pissed off. What can be done about the way black (and female and gay and Latino and poor)voices are being stigmatized? What's old Big Dog going to do about that?Francis Holland, in a comment to an earlier post, says,
I still strongly support the Hillary Clinton/Barack Obama presidential/vice presidential ticket, but there is only so much I can do for Hillary in the Black community if her campaign continues to engage in stereotypical color-associated attacks that denigrate ALL Black people.
She should also consider the fact that Blacks are inseparably associated with the public identity of the Democratic Party. To the extent that Blacks are besmirched, the Party itself loses popularity with the public. That makes it harder for Hillary Clinton to be elected in the fall.
If this seems ethereal, just remember how stereoypical portrayals of Blacks (Willie Horton) helped to doom Mike Dukakis' 1988 campaign. Fanning the flames of those stereotypes ultimately makes the Democratic Party less acceptable to white voters.
A word to the wise is sufficient. But a word to the wilfully deaf and ignorant is a waste of time. Let's see what whether the wise or the wilfully deaf will prevail.
I've spent a good amount of time here on this blog defending HRC against bogus claims of racism, and I've smacked The Golden One around for engaging in his own race-baiting, trying to milk liberal white guilt for all it is worth. But the fact is that when racism enters the conversation and settles its stinking, rotted carcass on the couch, it takes some ordinary extermination efforts to excise it from the body politic. I was particularly disturbed to read in more blogs and threads than I want to think about the number of people who talked about AA voters as having been "duped" (to either vote for or against HRC) or as "stupid" (for the same reason).
Paul Krugman, in The Conscience of a Liberal, speaks extensively about the way in which the Republican Party has made racism the foundation of their electoral success. There is no advantage to Democrats in touching this crap except to renounce it and denounce it in the most unequivocal terms. There is no ethical, legal, or electoral advantage to our party to engage in any kind of racial demagoguery.
To stigmatize or marginalize any constituency within our party makes the party weaker, and that is the way the Republicans continually try to portray Democrats - every Democrat is in the pocket of some "special interest." What is a "special interest"? Anyone who is not a wealthy WASP male and all groups such people belong to. The key point of congruence between New Hampshire and South Carolina was not the top two candidates - it was the derogatory way in which the media treated the winner's chief voting group. All the boo-hoo weepy, weak, wimmin for Hillary the Bitch and all those race-obsessed Black people voting for their homey Obama.
The media narrative was "Oh, man, neither of these candidates really appeal to white men all that much," as though this is A) true or B) meaningful. But this is how the media narative is shaping up. Hillary is the female candidate, Obama is the Black candidate and the lame-ass Republican who manages to stagger through to the nomination is going to be the "American" candidate.
Let's understand Krugman carefully: as he warns us, the Movement Conservatives want to roll back America to the 19th century. They want to destroy the economic gains and social equality that was a direct result of FDR's New Deal, and they are going to do this by racial and gendered attacks on our candidates, our policies and our governance. They want to eliminate equal rights and have no problem with apartheid. They want to roll back sexual equality. They are for eliminating rights to manage our own affairs, such as birth control and marriage, and want to remove the safety nets and legal safeguards that protect us from the selfish whims of the mega-rich.
The recent who's calling whom a racist shit has to stop.
I'm calling on the candidate I support, Hillary, to make it clear she will not tolerate any more questionable statements from anyone associated with her campaign, from Bill right down to the lowliest volunteer. She should refuse to answer race-baiting questions from assholes like Russert, and instead ask why the media is so determined to inject race into the campaign. And she has to make it clear who is and is not speaking for her campaign.
There is no person, no campaign, no victory that can justify deliberate use of racial divisions. Leave it to the Republicans to immolate themselves on the pyre of racism come November.