August 30 2012
Here is a headline on the front page of today’s Washington Post:
Racial Comments Mar Republican Message
If you weren’t by now wise to the ways of the mainstream media, you’d probably think Republicans were saying racist things.
But, Astute Reader, you already knew that the “racial comment” that “marred” the GOP convention came from a member of the media, didn't you? It was from David Chalian, then Yahoo News Washington bureau chief, who said into one of those fatal live mics that Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, were “happy to have a party with black people drowning,” a reference to Hurricane Isaac.
Chalian was fired—but he and his ugly attitude would still be there, if it weren’t for his carelessness about the mic.
“Not all of the race talk has been of the party’s own making,” the article helpfully says. But, if you read the piece, it appears than none of the “race talk” has been of the party’s own making. What was said about race, at least as quoted in this article, is something said by a member of the media or a GOP official responding to something said by a member of the media.
It is absolutely true that GOP needs to show more minority voters that their policies are better for them. It is also true that convention crowd was more monotone than Republicans might have wanted it to be. But I suggest that the GOP is making inroads with minority voters. Otherwise, how to explain the Post's bizarre non-story?
One incident was alleged:
On Tuesday, convention organizers ejected two attendees after they reportedly threw peanuts at a black CNN camerawoman and told her, “This is how we feed animals.” Organizers called the conduct “inexcusable and unacceptable.”
If this incident was racially motivated, it is, of course, beneath contempt.
But is it? Have you actually heard anybody say anything remotely like this recently? In my opinion, more details are needed to make the call about what was behind the unfortunate indicent. It is quite possible that the peanut-throwers are behaving in this fashion not because the camerawoman is black but because she is a member of the media. That wouldn’t make it acceptable behavior, of course.
But it would be a different story. I find it odd that the Post didn't provide more details.