Black Republicans Unhappy With Palin

August 20th, 2010 at 12:34 pm | 65 Comments |

| Print

John Avlon reports on how black Republicans are very unhappy with Sarah Palin’s defense of Dr. Laura Schlessinger:

The few black conservative candidates, columnists, and media figures—who represent the GOP’s only hope for reclaiming the legacy of Lincoln and, with it, long-term demographic relevance—are not amused. They’re now saying what many in the GOP increasingly believe: Sarah Palin is not fit to be a serious leader of the Republican Party.

I spoke to Michel Faulkner, the former NFL player and Harlem preacher challenging Charlie Rangel for a House seat, and he was unsparing in his criticism: “Why Sarah Palin feels she needs to join in to Dr. Laura’s personal meltdown is beyond me. She’s sounding like she just likes to hear her own voice—and the voice that she has is no longer credible. It says that a leading voice among conservatives has joined the ranks of the entertainers—trying to shock us each day with more and more outlandish commentary. And at that moment that person is no longer fit to lead.”

“The constitutional stuff she’s saying doesn’t even make any sense,” Faulkner said. “She doesn’t know what real shackles are… But ‘don’t retreat, reload?’ Lady, are you kidding me? That is scary language in anyone’s terminology. Sarah Palin scares me.”

Nationally syndicated conservative columnist Deroy Murdock took an even stronger line. “Sarah Palin’s tweets resemble something scribbled by a ninth-grade cheerleader. Is it asking too much for a reputed American political leader to communicate in complete sentences? Palin’s gravitas gap is growing into the Gravitas Canyon,” said the media fellow at the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University. “Even worse, she deploys her vacuity to defend an acerbic talk-show host who just detonated herself by tossing around the word ‘nigger’ on the air 11 times, as if it were a volleyball. The American right can do better than this. And it must.”

Joe Hicks recently launched a first-of-its-kind program called Minority Report on PJTV.com, from the perspective that “conservative blacks and other minority conservatives are routinely vilified by leftists and liberals as well as often marginalized by the right.” But this California-based Marxist-turned-conservative-convert, who’s a Tea Party-favorite, isn’t buying the party line when it comes to Palin’s Dr. Laura defense.

“When I first heard this stuff, what came across was an extremely lame white chick trying to school this other woman about the N-word. … So I’m certainly not one to try and defend Dr. Laura. She has a history of being a negative and nasty persona. But Sarah Palin’s comments? Well, this is confusing stuff coming out of a woman who would have been the vice president if McCain had won. … Palin seems to be as equally detached from the real world where people operate and where race is a really volatile topic.”

“First Amendment rights? Of course. But [Dr. Laura] wasn’t fired—she decided to drop her show. So I’m not exactly understanding what Sarah Palin’s understanding of the Constitution is here. And it isn’t completely out of character, which is very unfortunate. She keeps dropping this bizarre stuff,” Hicks said. “It says this woman really has no larger vision of what she is trying to do in a political sense—there’s a pretty narrow intellect at work here … Attempting to defend the indefensible is just kind of insulting.”

Earlier in the day, my colleague at The Daily Beast, Samuel P. Jacobs, got in touch with Timothy Johnson, chairman of the Frederick Douglass Foundation, the organization that helped recruit a record 32 African-American Republican congressional candidates this year—a feat first reported in The Daily Beast. Johnson was clear: “Sarah Palin is not the chair of the Republican Party. … She is a leading Republican, but from what I can tell many black Republicans don’t use Sarah Palin as a benchmark. I hope Chairman Steele comes out in relationship to this issue. … You can support the sinner and not the sin. We need to separate respecting the doctor versus respecting what she says. … If she chooses to run for president in 2012, she is going to have to answer to black Republicans.”

Click here to read more.

Recent Posts by FrumForum News



65 Comments so far ↓

  • Fairy Hardcastle

    busboy33, touche. Good post at least for the fact that you eschew trash talk and raise the question of whether this was good strategy. In doing so you also show how the word can be used in context without the ordinary offensiveness that is attached to it.

    Just a mild demographic point. I think it is safe to say that the group of white people that hear this word used only by black people is growing larger as the younger generations replace the old. I heard the word used only once in the traditional offensive sense by an 85 year old woman about 20 years ago.

  • PracticalGirl

    Miss Wasilla’s attempts to grab headlines from the “lame stream media” she puports to despise are getting more and more desperate. There was a controversy afoot that was about to get mad press, and Sarah couldn’t help but insert herself. But have we forgotten that Dr. Laura herself is no fan of Palin’s? Has Sarah?

    “Couldn’t the Republican Party find one competent female with adult children to run for Vice President with McCain? I realize his advisors probably didn’t want a “mature” woman, as the Democrats keep harping on his age. But really, what kind of role model is a woman whose fifth child was recently born with a serious issue, Down Syndrome, and then goes back to the job of Governor within days of the birth?”
    —Dr. Laura, 2008, in a blog post shortly after Palin’s nomination

    As for Dr. Laura…Her show and tone has become increasingly more shrill over the years even as her basic tenets and advice have stayed the same. She made a massive mistake (11 times), one that she knew even at the time was a whopper-so much so that she pulled herself off the air directly after the segment. Then she went on Larry King and described what she said as “wrong”. So all the caterwaulin’ in defense of what she said, including Miss Wasilla’s? Completely at odds with the position of the woman herself.

    It bears repeating: She wasn’t fired, she quit. In fact, she continues to DO HER SHOW until her contract runs out. Actually, I admire her tactics in handling this whole event. Think of all the recent incidents of radio mahem (Don Imus et al) and how they snowballed. Dr. Laura was savvy enough to come out with her own mea culpa, before any group kicked up enough fuss to draw the ire of her syndicator/station afilliates AND before any group had a chance to organize/threaten boycotts of her advertisers. You may not love Dr. Laura, but you have to hand it to her. She snatched victory out of the hands of defeat.

    The First Amendment is alive and well, and Dr. Laura’s situation is an example in the affirmative.

  • jakester

    I don’t even think this had anything to do with racism at all. I can picture how her pea brain worked. She heard about this flap and got some “ideas” from her talk radio mentors so she decided she could win some more brownie points from the knuckledraggers. So she weighs in with this marvelous gem of her trademark stupidity.

  • JeninCT

    LOL @ ktward

    “there are few here who would relish hanging you for changing your mind.”

    @ WizCo

    “I’m gonna get a bumper sticker made up: “I brake for Palin articles”.

    They’d sell well at this site!

  • Watusie

    Fairy: “the word can be used in context without the ordinary offensiveness that is attached to it”

    If that is possible – what “Dr.” Laura did isn’t an instance of it. In fact, Fairy, don’t take my word for it – take “Dr.” Laura’s:
    “Yesterday, I did the wrong thing,” she said. “I didn’t intend to hurt people, but I did. And that makes it the wrong thing to have done. I was attempting to make a philosophical point, and I articulated the “n” word all the way out – more than one time. And that was wrong. I’ll say it again – that was wrong.”

    So now we have your hero egging her on to “reload” and do the wrong thing again and again!

    Why is it important to Sarah Palin, and to you, that white people feel comfortable calling black people “niggers” once again?

  • anniemargret

    I’ve said it before and I will say it again. Sarah Palin is a huckster. And dumb one at that .

  • anniemargret

    Here’s the nutshell version:

    Sarah Palin is the Culture Warrior Queen of America. It’s why she feels it is her duty to verbalize (tweet) about anything that comes between blacks and whites, Christians and non-Christians, Moms and no-Moms, pitbulls and kittens, and ‘real Americans’ vs New Yorkers.

    Now picture her dainty little finger near the nuclear button.

  • busboy33

    @Fairy:

    “the fact that you eschew trash talk”

    well, I don’t know if I would go THAT far . . . ;)

    “I think it is safe to say that the group of white people that hear this word used only by black people is growing larger as the younger generations replace the old.”

    Agreed and conceeded. Also, I’ve heard plenty of discussion on this topic that places the “blame” for this on the Black community itself. An interesting subject and a fun intellectual exercise, but ultimate irrevelant to the question and the situation.

    And IMO thereHAS been a bare perceptable shift in the overall social acceptance of the word, with a somewhat slight “acceptance” of the “wigger” usage of the term. Well, maybe not “accepted” but the suburban white hip-hop wannabe using it is offensive for entirely different reasons than the “lazy and shiftless” usage.

    But as has been said before, the issue for Dr. L isn’t the fact that Teh Unmentionable Word passed her alabaster lips, but her overall staggeringly inappropriate tone and approach she took to her caller. Context is always a highly subjective and debatable aspect of social interaction . . . but while I’ve heard objectively “fair” defense of her use of the word, I haven’t heard anybody defending the context itself.
    It’s like Flava Flav saying “Heeeeey, booooooooyyyyy!” and some Old Segregationalist saying “What you doin’ in my store, boy?”. It’s not the word “boy” in-and-of itself . . . its the tenor and tone. That it theoretically might be possible for Dr. L as a caucasian to use the word in a non-offensive manner is a distraction, because she DID use it offensively here.

    @PracticalGirl:
    Bravo for your post.

  • JeninCT

    practical girl wrote:

    “Dr. Laura was savvy enough to come out with her own mea culpa, before any group kicked up enough fuss to draw the ire of her syndicator/station afilliates AND before any group had a chance to organize/threaten boycotts of her advertisers. You may not love Dr. Laura, but you have to hand it to her. She snatched victory out of the hands of defeat.”

    Excellent point. I agree. I was never a fan of hers but she was smart to get out of Dodge before Sharpton and Co. came after her. I have no doubt they would’ve.

  • JeninCT

    WizCo wrote:

    “But I’m a sucker for stories featuring her. I’m gonna get a bumper sticker made up: “I brake for Palin articles”.”

    Please do, so you can do your part in identifying youself as part of the problem.

  • Watusie

    JeninCT, try as you might, you cannot make “Dr.” Laura a victim here. Obviously Palinites like victimology, but you’ll have to wait until the next time Palin manufactures something for you to wallow in – it ain’t happening here.

  • larry Motuz

    Caribou Barbie…again and again she hurts all ‘true’ conservatives.

  • WizCo

    There’s a problem, Jen? Palin shoots herself in the foot twice a week, bringing disrepute to an already tottering Republican party and this is a problem? She’s hilariously fascinating, and she draws all the oxygen out of the GOP’s tiny tent. Steele and Palin 2012! Ha ha!

  • rectonoverso

    Only one person can stop the GOP from taking the House in November: Caribou Barbie.

  • Chris

    Fairy: “I heard the word used only once in the traditional offensive sense by an 85 year old woman about 20 years ago.”

    Seriously? Where do you live, Camp McMurdo?