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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I'm Just Saying:
Post Racial My Bottom.

Let me be clear, I wanted to title this post “Post Racial My Ass,” but after considering the truthfulness of Senate Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid’s recent controversial statements on negro dialect, I changed my mind. If you aren’t aware by now, let me catch you up. A new book titled Game Change (Harper 2010) has quoted Reid speaking frankly on the fact that Obama’s draw as a Black presidential candidate stemmed from his “light skin” and ability to forgo “negro dialect” when he chooses to. That Reid is a smart cookie, though a lack of political eloquence may be his downfall (sidebar: Reid, if you ever need help phrasing potentially controversial racial statements please call me…I’m available and I am one hell of an English language manipulator…). What I’m sure Reid meant to say was this:

Let us not frame Obama’s candidacy as an example of post-racial America, less we forget that while America as a whole may accept a fair skinned, ivy league educated, well spoken Black man as their commander in chief, we are far from the day when a Black man sporting waist length dreadlocks, a dashiki, and quoting Tupac Shakur instead of Martin Luther King, Jr., would be considered a viable candidate, even if he graduated at the top of his class at Harvard.
Unfortunately, though, that is not what Mr. Reid said. 

Still, Reid's lack of articulative tact does not make his comments any more malicious or any less accurate than the statement above.   That is, of course, unless the comment is being phrased (and/or misconstrued) by dubious media entities who fetishsize "controversial" racial commentary.  Unfortunately, once the story was sensationalized by news networks, everyone seemed up in arms about the comment - for reasons I just don't quite grasp.  Seems quite silly though.  I'm just saying...
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