Palin Repudiates Racism, Racially

July 15th, 2010 at 10:35 am | 33 Comments |

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Responding – fairly – to the NAACP’s false charge of “racism” in the Tea Party movement, remedy Sarah Palin could not resist an extra jab at our “half black” president.

Full disclosure, I myself share our President’s racial makeup. I am biracial, though I must admit to preferring El Rushbo’s designation of “Halfrican-American”. I was present on the Capitol lawn on the weekend of the passage of Obamacare, a firsthand witness to this silent majority’s recent awakening (not as a participant, just as a coincidental visitor). Though predominantly white, the self-proclaimed tea partiers were also calm, measured, and unfailingly polite.

Media reports claim that the protest degenerated into despicable vitriol directed at Democratic lawmakers, and more specifically members of the Congressional Black Caucus. No video evidence exists of racial slurs being hurled at Congressman John Lewis, and some are skeptical that the incident happened as reported.  It should also be said that the House leadership’s marching of black lawmakers through the fray was an absurdly transparent ploy, a laughable contrivance befitting the equation of the healthcare legislation to the Civil Rights Act. Yet despite the display’s questionable motives, it was perhaps successful in eliciting deplorable sentiment from stray participants.

The resolution passed this weekend by the NAACP treads the same ground, only this time the yahoo lunging for the bait happens to be a former nominee for Vice-President. Appearing on Hannity, Sarah Palin called on President Obama to denounce the NAACP in the wake of its resolution. There’s no question that the organization’s current incarnation is a liberal cudgel. A recent Washington Post article described black voters’ ambivalence toward this year’s midterm elections, and surely the NAACP is looking to galvanize the bloc by casting “us versus them” battle lines. However, instead of holding forth on the intellectual merits of objecting to the President’s agenda, Sarah Palin has fallen into the trap of answering cries of racism, defending the honor of her ideological compatriots by impossibly trying to prove a negative.

New York Times columnist David Brooks wrote recently that politics is not about winning arguments, but about deciding which arguments to have. Fairly or not, the tea party and its sympathizers cannot win the racism argument when the lines of our political discourse cast themselves on one side, and the nation’s first black president on the other. That they seem susceptible to believing this is a winnable argument shows not that they are being out-argued, but that they are being outsmarted. Like Wile E. Coyote, they risk chasing the Road Runner off a cliff. Once they realize it and look down, they will inevitably fall.

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33 Comments so far ↓

  • GEValle

    The TEA PARTY movement is not being “out-argued”. In fact, no argument or debate is taking place.

    Instead, the Left is trying to “rally the troops” by relying on their oldest trick – the race card!

    Unfortunately for them (and quite fortunately for us), we’re not taking this crap anymore. The TEA PARTY movement is not afraid to challenge the lies of the left, including the anointed “saints” at the NAACP.

    Failing to respond to the NAACP’s charges will give the appearance that they are correct, when they are nothing but desperate, liberal lies.

    The NAACP is a despicable, disreputable organization that bears no relation to it’s founding. They need to be called on the proverbial carpet for who they are – LIARS. And if the “mainstream” GOP is afraid to do so, then step aside for those of us who are not.

  • forgetn

    GEValle = Asshat

    You so miss the point of the blog is frighting. Jay just said: the trick is to frame the argument. Think back to the war in Afghanistan and Iraq: By re framing the question the Bush administration won the argument: If you are against the wars you are a traitor and un-american “Don’t you like America”. That Jay’s point, and its a good one.

    Reid played the same trick with framing the Republicans strategy: “The Republicans in congress want the economy to fail, because they will pick up votes if it fails” — suddenly the argument is not are the Democrats idea dangerous or stupid, rather are the Republicans out to destroy America!

  • easton

    forgetn, good summation

    “Unfortunately for them (and quite fortunately for us), we’re not taking this crap anymore.” Sure, like these freaks have ever once been for civil rights or equality. GEValles great grand pappy probably said the same thing after the Civil war when he joined the Klan. I think i have seen more minorities at Hitlers Nuremberg Rallies than I see at an average Tea Party rally, and I am really at a loss as the who has the more ridiculous costumes.

  • msmilack

    The evidence was visible to anyone watching the treatment of John Lewis; even a congressman from South Carolina finally came out this week and said he was witness to it. I do not know what your issues are but they are preventing you from seeing the truth.

  • msmilack

    The fact that you write under a pseudonym makes me seriously doubt that you are who you say you are. Any white person could write the same post and claim to be bi-racial. Why would you hide your identity when everyone else who contributes reveals theirs?

  • msmilack

    It is beyond me why anyone would deny the truth about the tea party’s posters (anyone seen yesterday’s billboard in Iowa brought to you by the Iowa tea party?) I can’t get past your sentence calmly saying there is no proof of John Lewis’s assertions. I saw it happen, there were hundreds of witnesses. What is the point of discounting the truth? It disparages anything you have to say that might be correct. And it infuriates me (obviously). It is very hard to argue in any format with a person who is a truth denier.

  • msmilack

    You wrote: “It should also be said that the House leadership’s marching of black lawmakers through the fray was an absurdly transparent ploy, a laughable contrivance befitting the equation of the healthcare legislation to the Civil Rights Act.”

    Since when is it wrong for elected officials to march together in an act of solidarity against a mindless mob? It sounds positively paranoid to assume that all righteous actions are ploys. Or that the NAACP has set a trap. Wake up and look around: the tea party needs no help in making fools of themselves and in disaparaging any member of the GOP who associates with them. How you can justify their behavior baffles me. I’m sorry if I sounded like I was getting personal before questioning your identity but it did occur to me your essay could be written by any anonymous source; anonymous sources are the least convincing witnesses and they have nothing to lose. Therefore, I choose to trust the senators, congressmen, reporters and my own eyes above what an anonyous witness reports while hiding his or her identity.

  • DonR

    Why are some “skeptical” about the account of John Lewis? Who are they?

  • jakester

    i hate to stick up for Palin, when at best she just stole Ron Paul’s lines, but she is right. As well as if you are for smaller government, then the CBC is the last group of people who’d support your goals since they are all about higher taxes, gun confiscation, more socialism and a permanent set of racial job assignments. It is the NAACP & CBC who have painted themselves into a corner this time

  • jakester

    msmilack
    As stupid as that billboard in Iowa was, it wasn’t racist or even that out of the ordinary. Unfavorable presidents getting compared to heinous dictators is hardly controversial anymore. All the NAACP flaps prove is talk radio’s claim that any criticism of Obama is labeled as racist to shut people up.

    Also, if the teapartiers there were a mindless mob, then why weren’t those congressmen attacked? They are no more mindless than the fools who turns out for left wing approved demonstrations. I don’t believe John Lewis and I do believe that march was done deliberately to incite a couple of insults so the race pandering industry could go into full demonization mode.

  • DonR

    jakester,

    Why wouldn’t you believe John Lewis?

  • rbottoms

    How dare John Lewis give a bunch of whining no-nothings the chance to show who they really are.

    Imagine the nerve, walking through a mob.

    Peacefully.

    Of course we all know MalikObamaHitlerMao is secretly behind it.

  • Demosthenes

    “The resolution passed this weekend by the NAACP treads the same ground, only this time the yahoo lunging for the bait happens to be a former nominee for Vice-President”

    Yes, she is an idiot. I sometimes wonder if she is a deep undercover sleeper agent for the Democrats. I mean, Palin is the gift that keeps on giving for them.

  • Madeline

    On Hannity last night, Palin called on Obama to “refudiate” the NAACAP resolution.

  • TerryF98

    “It should also be said that the House leadership’s marching of black lawmakers through the fray was an absurdly transparent ploy,”

    Complete effing nonsense. SO Martin Luther King’s marches were a “transparent ploy”

    Please come into the real world.

  • forgetn

    Palin = 13th Russian spy?

    What’s the joke from Princes Bride by the character Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  • msmilack

    Jay Gatsby
    In the hours since I wrote the above remarks I’ve been struck by writer’s remorse. Pardon my tone of voice; I think I took out my frustration on an innocent person and my frustration has nothing to do with politics. The truth: I’m visiting family in Ohio, it is 98 degrees in the shade (literally — I’ve never used that expression before) and my brain is melting. I just left to take a ride to the store to cool off and and as soon as I got in the car I thought, I better apologize to that blogger. Lately, I’m getting very carried away.

  • busboy33

    “No video evidence exists of racial slurs being hurled at Congressman John Lewis, and some are skeptical that the incident happened as reported.”

    When did the Tea Party get concerned with evidence?

    Illegals aren’t leaving dsecapitated corpes in the desert, but I gotta listen to that factually-deficient nonsense. Now unless you’ve got original video, you just can’t imagine someone in a TP healthcare reform crowd might yell something ugly or racist?

    I agree with yourt characterization — when I think back to all the TP healthcare townhall meetings, thedescriptors I think of are certainly “Though predominantly white, the self-proclaimed tea partiers were also calm, measured, and unfailingly polite.” Yes, the Tea Party debates on Healthcare Reform will certainly be remembered for many things . . . IMO “predominantly white” is certainly one of them. But “calm, measured, and unfailingly polite?”
    The guy bringing his rifle to a meet-n-greet. Polite, you say? Well, maybe. Personally, I find implicit threats to be a bit churlish, but to each his own. How about the great Death Panel debates? Those certainly were many entertaining things . . . but “calm, measured, and unfailingly polite”? I will admit I was impressed with how calm the discussion was, considering we were talking about a secret Socialist Maoist Terrorist Mooslim Kenyan who wants to kill Grandma to clear beds at the FEMA Relocation camp. Fo me, that kind of emotional discussion might get my passions a bit iunflamed, but not the Tea Party. No siree. Calm and objective. They always made sure to wipe the spit off you after they ranted.

    So I understand how incredulous you are to hear somebody might think the Tea Partiers are anybody other than Grandma using her Church Voice. Now where could such a slanderous fallacy have come from?
    Oh . . . you mean you didn’t witness anybody at this particular scene act rude? Well, that’s totally different. If you walked by the crown and didn’t see somebody getting beat down, thenit must have bee polite, have been polite in the past, and certainly remained polite in the future.

    And you were there personally at the Lewsi incident, were you? Oh . . . you wern’t. Then you’re right, of course . . . there’s no evidence. Excepting the Congressman’s eyewitness word. That’s not any kind of “evidence”, though, since he’s a Democrat. Or something.

    So let’s see . . . you saw a peaceful (in your completely unbiased opinion) gathering for some brief time (you were there for something else, right) of people that have acted vituperative in the past. You don’t have any firsthand knowledge about an vituperative alleged incident, but a Congressman claims to have witnessed racist behavior (and is co-oberated by other people). The Congressman WAS there, but why would you believe eye-witnesses accounts? Nope. Sounds fishy to me.

    You’re going to hurt yourself bending over backwards that far.

    And the Far Right wonders why people are looking at the Tea Party skeptically.

  • busboy33

    @jakester:

    “Also, if the teapartiers there were a mindless mob, then why weren’t those congressmen attacked?”

    Ah the classic wife-beater defense #2 –

    “She said what? She said I threatend her? Look man, If I though she was really such a lazy whore, why didn’t I cut her up good? Huh? I mean, I’f I’m mad enough to call her correct, you’d best beleve bitch would be bleeding. Specially since she’s such a lazy whore. See, that shows how silly this is. Man, why you charging me? I just explainde how this is silly, didn’t I!?”

    A very close cousin of . . .

    “She said I slapped her? Man, if I was gonna slap her, why didn’t I just slit the bitch’s throat? Huh? Think about it!”

    Yes . . . its amazing there’s still charges for menacing in all 50 states, considering nobody ever just yells anymore. Either you display Gandhi-like calm, or you go Columbine. No middle ground.

    Of course, back in reality-land, things are sometimes slightly more complex. I know, its scary sometimes. But I bet you can deal with it..

  • msmilack

    jakester // Jul 15, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    Never has there been a billboard like that of a sitting president. It makes me sick to even describe it.

    To deny the racist signs people held, and the racist beliefs they spouted and continue to spout is to miss the point: of course there are racists in the tea party. What are the non-racists going to do about it? So far, their refusal to do anything has made them accomplices.

  • msmilack

    jakester

    Didn’t mean to “yell” at you (I can never tell with blog writing how the tone comes across); in a more balanced voice let me say that never have I seen such a poster, in that size, alleging any similarity to the sitting president with known villains to humanity. It is a disgrace. The Tea Party talks about values but demonstrates that they have none. They value nothing, they respect nothing; it is all about them, not the country.

  • anniemargret

    msmilack: You are always very nice, but you are always spot on. You don’t have to apologize to anyone that I can tell –

    That poster IS a disgrace. Worse…an abomination.

    The reason the Tea Party members are not stepping up to the plate to call out the racism within their midst is simply because the racists outnumber the non-racists. There is no other reason other than bullheaded mindless ideology that cannot even admit it might go wrong even when it’s staring at everyone in the face.

  • anniemargret

    Even Mark Williams, Tea Party Express spokesman when asked why they don’t call out the racism in their organization replied that while he doesn’t like the racist comments, he doesn’t want to suppress free speech…or something weird like that.

    Sure….

  • msmilack

    anniemargret

    On the news, I just heard someone read a letter written by Mark Williams that is so offensive, I hope it was a satire but I don’t think it is. He says everything bad you can image about “colored people” as he calls them (from the original meaning of NAACP). If the other members do not denounce his views, what else are we to think? If I can find a copy of the letter, I will include it on the blog.

  • msmilack

    anniemargret // Jul 15, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    You wrote: “The reason the Tea Party members are not stepping up to the plate to call out the racism within their midst is simply because the racists outnumber the non-racists. There is no other reason other than bullheaded mindless ideology that cannot even admit it might go wrong even when it’s staring at everyone in the face.”

    I think it’s also because there is no real leadership; who exactly would speak for them and who exactly are they? I hope they just kind of die out when their attention is drawn to someone else to blame for all their troubles.

  • anniemargret

    Msmilack: I agree about their lack of leadership. But a true leader of a group that wants to make an impact on the national stage must also reflect good values. The Tea Party sings the song of ‘true American values’ but what most people have witnessed is the reverse.

    Until they DO have a leader with the guts to stand up and quell the innate racism they will remain nothing but a conglomerate of frustrated angry voters with a mixed bag of ideologies and lots of resentment. Snarky never sells.

  • msmilack

    anniemargret

    For all the reasons you stated, I think the Tea Party will die at least as an autonomous organization.

    Is it a branch of the GOP?

    It must be; as I read somewhere today where someone posed this question: why else would the GOP be so busy defending the Tea Party, and why did they interfere in the back-and-forth between the NAACP and the Tea Party if there is a difference between them?

    The most ironic part is that the term “tea party” doesn’t even apply to any of their legitimate complaints (not that I think they have any): Obama has lowered taxes more than anyone and they formed an organization based on a reaction to the British taxes.

  • jakester

    Since when is making fun or demonizing of a president a sign of racism? While there are some racist in the tea party movement, they are a small fraction of the whole and don’t speak for them. People here are like the HuffPo drones, you look at the same pictures of a few posters and divine evil racist intentions from them. I may remind you that many black supporters of Obama share just as contemptibly racist and antisemitic views as you accuse the tea partiers of having.

    The NAACP last month condemned a harmless kid’s graduation card as racist because their dishonest fools deliberately misinterpreted “black holes” as “black whores”. The NAACP is nothing more than a cheap, dishonest political pressure group. I have more respect for the Tea Party Express than the NAACP.

  • busboy33

    “The reason the Tea Party members are not stepping up to the plate to call out the racism within their midst is simply because the racists outnumber the non-racists.”

    I’ve been bending over backward in my own mind to come up with ANY other reasonable answer . . . but after a certain point you have to acknowledge the facts in front of you.

  • anniemargret

    Jakester: Yes, there are contemptible black people as well. There are contemptible people in general, everywhere in every race, creed, and ethnicity.

    But we are talking about the Tea Party. The TP that wants to make a huge impact in today’s national scene politically. They appear to have clout due to widespread media coverage and many speakers articulating their views.

    You say, however, that the racists are such a small factor. If so, and let’s presume for the moment that’s true, then why the recalcitrance to call them out and oust them? Why do ‘leaders’ like Mark Williams appear not too eager to do that?

    Two reasons I can think of……because 1) they don’t want to ‘offend’ the racists; or 2) they are racists themselves and secretly agree with them.

    If either of those are true, then the TP as a political force will not be taken seriously. This is a legitimate argument. Every time someone points out the utter immorality of people within that organization holding up despicable signs or spitting on black Congressmen, excuses from the TP come in waves.

    We’ve come a long way in this country against racism or prejudice and we don’t need a return to it. The views of the TP would be taken more seriously if this thorn is taken out of its side. But it’s up to the TPers isn’t it?

    In fact, I would go even further and say that no matter WHAT party one belongs to, there is no place in civilized society, or a society that pretends to call itself,, ‘moral’ that doesn’t speak out against prejudice in any form or from any source.

  • anniemargret

    I think ‘demonizing’ a president can go too far. Comparing Obama to Hitler, Stalin or Pol Pot is not only absurd it is morally repugnant.

    I may have hated most of Bush43′s policies but to compare him to any of the above or similar is beyond the pale.

  • westony

    IMO if the Tea Party is NOT racist then there should be NO film, video or image of their members engaged in Racist behavior. Just as Pay-lin says in this article “No video evidence exists of racial slurs being hurled at Congressman John Lewis, and some are skeptical that the incident happened as reported”
    I assume if video evidence does exists (and it does) of racial behavior by the T Party she will manage to explain that away.
    Sarah Pay-lin is jumping on this to reinforce the troops and especially to ensure they will show up at Glenn Becks Party next month. The more who attend the better the photo OP for Beck/Pay-lin/Fox.
    Except that march will go “down in history as the March of the Racist”. And those two will be standing “front and center”. They will go down in history as the George Wallace’s of the 21st Century.

  • busboy33

    @Jay Gatsby:

    “Responding – fairly – to the NAACP’s false charge of “racism” in the Tea Party movement”

    Are you saying that allegations of racism are inappropriate when aimed at the Tea Party? Because here was Mark Williams (Vice-President of the Tea Party Express) commenting on the NAACP’s allegations as well:

    “Here’s a sample (the post is written in the form of a mock letter to President Abraham Lincoln from Jealous):

    ‘We Colored People have taken a vote and decided that we don’t cotton to that whole emancipation thing. Freedom means having to work for real, think for ourselves, and take consequences along with the rewards. That is just far too much to ask of us Colored People and we demand that it stop!’

    That’s just the introduction. Here’s the good stuff:

    ‘Perhaps the most racist point of all in the tea parties is their demand that government “stop raising our taxes.” That is outrageous! How will we Colored People ever get a wide screen TV in every room if non-coloreds get to keep what they earn? Totally racist! The tea party expects coloreds to be productive members of society?

    Mr. Lincoln, you were the greatest racist ever. We had a great gig. Three squares, room and board, all our decisions made by the massa in the house. Please repeal the 13th and 14th Amendments and let us get back to where we belong.’”

    Again, for the record: this how an official at the Tea Party Express explains how not racist the Tea Party is.”
    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/07/tea-party-express-mark-williams-naacps-use-of-colored-makes-it-racist.php

    btw, @jakester:

    Since your racism antenna is either unintentionally or deliberately out of whack . . . this is what most people call racist.