Thursday, November 18, 2004

Condi and the race fetishists

Some musings on the ugly editorial cartoons of Condi Rice that are popping up like spring mushrooms ...

Sorry, folks ... not all caricatures of black females are racist. Take this one by Pat Oliphant. As far as I can tell, he's portraying her as dumb and a sycophant -- which is not racist on its face. Insert any number of white males in the role of the parrot, and I don't think you'd hear the same bawling. There have certainly been plenty of conservative cartoonists lampooning Dems as unintelligent, sycophantic, out of touch, mean, ugly, nasty ... and just plain horny.

For that matter, criticism about Rice being a "yes person" to Bush is not inherently racist, either, and we shouldn't try to delegitimize comment and dissent on that basis.

On the other hand, this little gem by Jeff Danziger crosses the line, IMHO: Condi Rice as the IQ-deficient "Prissy" in Gone with the Wind, complete with Ebonics. Frankly, I would find it just as offensive if a cartoonist caricatured Barack Obama as an African savage with a bone through his nose.

Can we just for once keep race out of it? Yes, it's worthy of note that Rice -- who came of age in my hometown during the Bull Connor era -- has risen to such a high office.

However, the Bush White House seems to be avoiding the usual self-conscious preening about "diversity." Rice is simply qualified -- who cares if she's black or green or paisley. It's the race fetishists who will elevate Barack Obama to sainthood and rip Condi Rice a new one based on whether or not they're being true to their "roots."

So much for being judged on your character rather than your color.

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