The Plank

The Media And The Supposed White Backlash

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Mickey Kaus:

I'm posting the following email from reader M, not to endorse it (or to criticize it) but just in case Obama supporters do not realize what their candidate is now up against.

The email goes on to say, in part:

I was liking Obama quite a bit until the militant black establishment
came out for him. Here's the thing... your primary identity is either
American or hyphenated-American. In other words, you can be American
first, or you can be (example) Gay-American, African-American,
WASP-American.

So bottom line: Yes, backlash has already happened. By being the Black
candidate rather than an American candidate, Obama is no longer in the
running to be MY candidate.

The correspondent also notes that he is more bullish on Hillary because she has not become a "Gyno-American." Nice. (And also nice of Kaus to "not criticize" this kind of trash). Anyway, reading Mickey's post does bring up some questions about the way the media has been covering this supposed "white backlash" against Obama--which if it is occuring seems to be doing so entirely because black voters have come to like the guy and/or tire of the Clintons. Or, to put it another way, Mickey's emailer is dead wrong: Obama has done almost everything imaginable to run as a not-explicitly-racial candidate. 

Thus, if the press is going to comment on this "phenomenon" they need to come right out and talk about the blatant racism at work. It's somewhat of a surreal experience to hear one television commentator after another list the ways in which black support actually hurts Obama--and then deny that the great and good American people are racist. You can't have it both ways.

--Isaac Chotiner

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