National Review Online: Racy Content

National Review Online

Racy Content

Transcend means “to move beyond, to surpass.” At least that’s what I always thought. But I’m beginning to wonder whether it means instead: “Much, much more of the same, only this time really stupid.”

Exhibit A: the incessant, relentless, click-your-ruby-red-slippers-and-say-it-until-it-comes-true mantra that Barack Obama will magically cause America to “transcend race.” One hears and reads this everywhere, but less as an argument than as a prayer, an expression of faith, a “from my lips to The One’s ear” sort of thing.

It is, of course, total and complete nonsense. According to L.B.O. (Logic Before Obama), transcending race would involve making race less of an issue. Passengers on Spaceship Obama would see race shrink and then vanish in the rearview mirror.

Instead, Obama has set off a case of full-blown race dementia among precisely the crowd that swears Obama is leading us out of the racial wilderness. Rather than shrink, the tumor of racial paranoia is metastasizing, pressing down on the medulla oblongata or whatever part of the brain that, when poked, causes one to hallucinate, conjure false memories and write astoundingly insipid things. For instance, a writer for Slate sees racism when anyone notes that Barack Obama is — wait for it — skinny. What this portends for Fat Albert is above my pay grade.

We need to rewrite those old Schoolhouse Rock cartoons, because now virtually any adjective, noun, verb, or adverb aimed at Barack Obama that is not obsequiously sycophantic or wantonly worshipful runs the risk of being decried as racist. Community organizer? Racist! Mentioning his middle name? Racist! Arrogant? Racist! Palling around with a (white) terrorist? Racist! Celebrity? Racist! Cosmopolitan? Racist! This? Racist! That? Racist! The other thing? Oh man, that’s really racist.

The new Schoolhouse Rock cartoon: “Conjunction: a word that connects a racist attack and Barack Obama.”


2 Responses

  1. Of the list of phrases that you list at the end of the column, there are only two that I would call racist and it is because of context. First, the way that his middle name has ben pointed out was repeatedly in the context of trying to link him to Saddam Hussein, as well as misspeaking (again repeatedly) as Osama, was in fact meant to incite fear of him being an Arab terrorist. Same intent is behind the attempted link to William Ayers – most people who hear about it won’t know that William Ayers is a white guy and again associate him with being a Arab terrorist. This follows along with the sickning viral emails I was getting early in the campaign that told me that Mr. Obama was a Muslim, which to a large swath of Americans means a bad person. Personally I am aware that being a Muslim does not make you bad or evil, but I have had the opportunity in my life to know great people who follow the Islamic faith.. However, the majority of the American populace only hears about Arabs and Muslims when they are in the news for negative reasons.
    Your anti-logical knee jerk reaction stating that there is no basis to the accusations of racism is just as bad as some people’s anti-logical knee jerk reaction stating that everything is racist. Instead I suggest taking them one at a time and using your judgement and empathy to try to understand the other side.

  2. I guess I should have posted that to The National Review, not here 😉

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