Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Joe Buck Disgusting Act of the Week: Geraldine Ferraro

The Joe Buck Disgusting Act of the Week is awarded to whatever event/person best deserves Joe Buck's unnecessary and over the top outrage after a 2004 Randy Moss' touchdown celebration.

It starts with the other day with Geraldine Ferraro's comments about Barack Obama:
"If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position," she continued. "And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."
Huh... that's fairly offensive, not to mention a really idiotic thing to say. You'd think that 43 for 43 record of white men being president would take down that whole "advantage" arguement, but let's give her the benefit of the doubt. After all she could be referring to this black president, but since's he's a basketball player, and that was an ad based on nickname he gave himself... somehow I doubt it. DHinMI at dailykos has the ugly strategy behind her strange statement:

One can laugh at the ridiculousness of the statement, or ridicule the idea that African-Americans somehow have it easier in America than white men or women. But to do so misses how Ferraro's statement will be heard by too many Americans.

The fact is, there are a lot of White people in American who believe they're at a disadvantage, that Blacks get things handed to them. The idea may be foreign to some people, but I've heard it my entire life. I've heard it at family gatherings, in my neighborhood when I was a kid, from family friends and all kinds of other folks. It's not a fringe belief. It's at the heart of the belief system of the so-called Reagan Democrats—swing voters and even some Democrats who were cradle Democrats but defected to Reagan and have been up for grabs in most elections since 1992.

Some of these Reagan Democrats will hear Ferraro's comment, and they'll think about the job they didn't get because, they believe, it went to an affirmative action hire. They'll think about the guy promoted over them because, they believe, he's black. And they'll think "here we go again."

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh! Race baiting from the Clinton campaign! Now THAT makes sense! Well, we've been down this road before, and since it's been seen by the national media, they'll let the smear stay in the news for a few more hours before Ferraro gives her insincere apology:

"It wasn't a racist comment, it was a statement of fact," she said on CBS' Early Show, adding that she would leave Hillary Clinton's national finance committee if she were asked.
"Racism works in two different directions. I really think they're attacking me because I'm white. How's that?"
Wow, that was different. Instead of apologizing, she strongly defended the comments. It looks like the Clinton campaign over played it's racebaiting tactic by allowing the comments to be said by an actual racist! What a twist! The Hillary Clinton campaign, produced by to you by M Night Shyamalan. As if to solidify the point, what's her next move? To appear on one of the remaining sanctuaries for racism in the mainstream media: The Bill O'Reilly show!

O'REILLY: This crossed the wire. Apparently you told the Daily Breeze newspaper in Torrance, California, quote, "If Obama were a white man, he would not be in this position. If here were a woman of any color, he would not be in the position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is in a country who's caught up in the concept." Did you say that?

FERRARO: Yeah, but I also said a lot before that.

O'REILLY: Right, but you know you're gonna get hammered on that.

FERRARO: I was not speaking – no, I was speaking to – it was a paid speech. I was not representing a campaign. I go out and give speeches. I don't –

O'REILLY: Oh, I understand that.

FERRARO: You know, like you do.

O'REILLY: I absolutely know they can take you out of context, but do you believe that Barack Obama, if he were a white mean, white senator, would not be in the position?

FERRARO: Absolutely

O'REILLY: I got it. I got it. I got it. No, listen, I mean, I'm not saying you're wrong [...] but you're gonna get hammered by it, but if anybody does, let me know, and I'll take care of them. Geraldine Ferraro, everybody. Geraldine's too nice, see.
Classy stuff. But not as damning as this gem all the way from 1988.

That's right, you guessed it, about Jesse Jackson:
Placid of demeanor but pointed in his rhetoric, Jackson struck out repeatedly today against those who suggest his race has been an asset in the campaign. President Reagan suggested Tuesday that people don't ask Jackson tough questions because of his race. And former representative Geraldine A. Ferraro (D-N.Y.) said Wednesday that because of his "radical" views, "if Jesse Jackson were not black, he wouldn't be in the race."

Asked about this at a campaign stop in Buffalo, Jackson at first seemed ready to pounce fiercely on his critics. But then he stopped, took a breath, and said quietly, "Millions of Americans have a point of view different from" Ferraro's.

Discussing the same point in Washington, Jackson said, "We campaigned across the South . . . without a single catcall or boo. It was not until we got North to New York that we began to hear this from Koch, President Reagan and then Mrs. Ferraro . . . . Some people are making hysteria while I'm making history."
I guess some things never change, huh?

Kos pulls a great quote from blogger dna who explains further explains the strategy and the cost:

If the Clinton campaign was truly embarrassed or disagreed with Ferraro's comments, they wouldn't be tossing her into the media frenzy to shout her message from the mountaintops that Barack Obama's success is due only to his blackness. And they would not be utilizing the most effective means of doing so--the Right Wing smear machine that nearly destroyed Bill Clinton's presidency.

The aim here is to evoke racial resentment on the part of white voters over issues like Affirmative Action, and cast Obama as a talentless hack who excels only because our country is held victim by political correctness. The hope is that this will drive a permanent wedge between Obama and white voters that will sway Superdelegates to ultimately go with Hillary at the convention. At worst, Obama will be so damaged in the general that he can never be a threat to their ambitions again.

Aside from the various ironies at work here, the fact that Affirmative Action has mostly benefited white women and Hillary's use of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy she gave a name to, the possiblity that Hillary, even if she gets the nomination, may face a similar line of argument given the fact that bans on Affirmative Action will be on the ballot in several swing states, there may be a silver lining. After this campaign, black voters should consider very seriously our allegiance to the Democratic Party in the voting booth, and the reality that white liberals are comfortable with our success only to the point that they can control and take credit for it.
Agreed. That last sentence hits home for those of us who believe that a Hillary Clinton victory based on super delegates will completely destroy (And rightly so, I might add) the democratic party.

After a couple days of this stuff, it also looks like this Ferraro has been fired, leaving behind this rather amazing letter:

Dear Hillary –

I am stepping down from your finance committee so I can speak for myself and you can continue to speak for yourself about what is at stake in this campaign.

The Obama campaign is attacking me to hurt you. I won't let that happen.

Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do to make this a better world for my children and grandchildren.

You have my deep admiration and respect.

Nice. But just like their other race baiting campaign, when the dog whistle turns into a siren, its becomes a lot less useful.

The more I read these quotes and others by her (especially the ones here about John Lewis and others who dared to endorse Obama), this doesn't quite qualify as one disgusting act. It more qualifies Geraldine Ferraro as a disgusting human being, and I really hope she quietly returns to her previous position of complete irrelevance that she maintained so well before the existence of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.

No comments:

Post a Comment