Stuck on “Stupid”


I think that the media and blogger uproar over Barack Obama’s answer at his fifth press conference last night to a request for his reaction to the arrest of Prof. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is far more revealing and significant than the answer itself. The man was asked a question (one he would not have been asked  if he were not himself black), he answered it (at some length, and thoughtfully), and the mob seizes on one word to expose him as a fraud, not “post-racial” at all, just out to practice the same old politics of division.

It’s still not okay in this country for a black American to speak out of racial experience, no matter how diplomatically or fairmindedly. Obama is right. We aren’t there yet.

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