Sunday, March 16. 2008
I figured it was only a matter of time before someone figured out a way to make Obama's race an issue without getting obviously racist about it. We've seen a few badly muffled attempts, like last week's doozy with Geraldine Ferraro. But the flap over Rev. Jeremiah Wright seems to have scored. I don't really know what this is all about, and I don't much care -- otherwise I'd be talking about Rev. John Hagee, if you know what I mean -- but the bottom line complaint seems to be that Obama consorts with black people, and this gives him a strange and dangerous view of America, no matter how polite or respectable he appears in public. Here's a couple of links, which is about as far as I've investigated the matter:
Looking through the comments in the latter piece I gather that it was the "God damn America" like that did it. I always thought it was Pat Robertson who said that.
Meanwhile, here's Richard Crowson's Wichita Eagle editorial cartoon today -- a What's the Matter With Kansas? classic:
Since we're on candidates, might as well give the others some notice. Media Bistro as an interview with Matt Taibbi, where they ask him "who or what disgusts you the most this primary season?" His answer:
There was a letter in the Eagle today from someone who said she was so disgusted with Clinton that if Obama wasn't nominated she'd sit this election out. I'm still not inclined to go that far, but ask me again after Denver.
One thing that heightened my nervousness is reading an account of the 1976 and 1980 presidential elections that put a lot of emphasis on how divisive primary challenges weakened Ford and Carter, with both going on to defeat. The Democrats are becoming at least that divided this year -- "disgust" is a pretty strong word. You can tell yourself that November is still a long ways away, and that McCain will prove to be a powerful unifying force. But the next few weeks without any actual primaries to help clarify things look to be discomfiting.