Posts Tagged ‘racism’

Dr. Laura Schlessinger teaches us how to apologize

August 17, 2010

Dr. Laura Schlessinger is ending her radio show at the end of the year, nudged along by the furor over her repeated use of the “n-word” in a conversation with a caller. Dr. Laura repeated the word six or seven times, not in a racist way, but in a complaint about a double standard whereby black comics can use it ad nauseum, but it’s off limits to whites.

In the conversation Dr. Laura spoke disrespectfully and hurtfully to the caller, who, after all, called in for some consoling and advice. The next day Dr. Laura taught us all a lesson about apologizing. Not a Category 1 (defiant) apology: “I’m sorry if you think I did something wrong.” Not a Category 2 (evasive) apology: “I may have made an innocent mistake, and I’m sorry for it—if I actually did it.”

No, Dr. Laura issued an all-out Category 3 apology that’s so rare in public life:

“I talk every day about doing the right thing. And yesterday, I did the wrong thing. 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. (more…)

Can the Obama administration be so shamelessly unethical? The firing of Shirley Sherrod by Agriculture Secretary Vilsack

July 20, 2010

Until Monday Shirley Sherrod was a low-level political appointee working in Georgia for the Department of Agriculture. A right-wing website posted a videotape appearing to show Sherrod saying she refused help to a farmer save his farm because he was white. Fox News played it endlessly, with all the fair and balanced commentators screaming racism and demanding Sherrod’s head.

The NAACP bit and denounced Sherrod’s apparent racism, and Agriculture Tom Vilsack pushed her out—all the way out—of government employment. The White House announced that the President supported Vilsack’s decision.

As the old saying goes, it was all lies, including the words an and the. The video had been edited to turn Sherrod’s remarks 180 degrees. She had been telling her personal tale of growth out of racism. She had thought of not helping the white farmer, identified in several news reports as Roger Spooner, then realized that the issue was rich and poor, not white and black, and had gone to great lengths to help him save his farm. And the whole thing took place 24 years ago, long before she entered government service. (more…)

Tea Party rejects racism, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell has “better things to do”

July 19, 2010

The Tea Party is a loosely organized group of people who favor generally conservative causes—lower taxes, smaller government, gun rights, and more immigration enforcement. But the party has attracted people to its rallies carrying signs comparing Obama to Hitler and telling him to “Go back to Kenya.” And members have spat epithets of faggot and nigger at congressmen Barney Frank (D-MA) and Jim Clyburn (D-SC).

As a result the NAACP passed a resolution last week calling on Tea Party leaders “to repudiate those in their ranks who use racist language in their signs and speeches.” (Several of those signs are shown here.) Tea Party Express spokesman Mark Williams, asked to tell racists “you’re not welcome” in the tea party, replied, “Racists have their own movement. It’s called the NAACP.”

Not satisfied to let things stand, Williams posted on his web site a letter supposedly written to Lincoln by “colored people” protesting emancipation and praising slavery.

While Williams defended his letter as satire, he has used ugly racial language regularly, especially in opposition to the proposed mosque near Ground Zero. He derided Mohammed as “the terrorist monkey god,” and called Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, who backs building the mosque, a “Jewish Uncle Tom who would have turned rat on Anne Frank.” President Obama was an “Indonesian Muslim turned welfare thug.” (more…)


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