Saturday, May 17, 2008

Full-blooded Americans

Some guy in West Virginia named Josh Fry, who I've never heard of, recently told some Washington Post Writers Group columnist named Kathleen Parker, who I've never heard of, that he plans to vote for John McCain come November because he wants "someone who is a full-blooded American as president." Some other forward-thinking West Virginian, noted Parker, commented that he "heard that Obama is a Muslim and his wife's an atheist." None of these people is "prejudiced," mind you. Just more "comfortable" with Americans who are "full-blooded" and have "roots" that go back through generations of sacrifice.


You would think that Parker, who I cannot recall ever appearing on the Post Op-Ed page, would be pointing out that comments such as Fry's are really indicative of the racism that still exists in deep pockets of the American electorate. Why else would the Post offer a voice to someone who normally appears elsewhere?

Uh . . . no.

In a column published just two days ago on the virtues of the "white working-class," and their progressive, open-minded ways, Parker actually agrees with these statements, and points out that the United States does not face a racial or gender divide, but a populace divided by patriotism.

Just what does this mean? Read the rest of this incredibly offensive column here. . . .

and then ask yourself, "Why does she have a column on the Post Op-Ed page this morning attacking Obama and Edwards as girly gays, or gay guys, or slick boys without a clue who talk pretty, while complimenting Hillary Clinton as someone who "exud[es] brawn?"

At the end of every academic year, I tell my graduating seniors that one the most frustrating parts of the adjustment from school to work is the number of people who manage to get to places where other people should be on the merits, but just aren't. Washington, especially, rewards groupthink and an unspoken gravitation to an unspecified opinion mean that only takes seriously those views which reflect the "sensible" center. No one can seriously claim to watch the Washington babble-fest TV shows and the endless cycle of 24 news and believe they're actually learning something. These programs are designed to entertain and promote a gaffe or some other statement that generally bears no relationship to the health, safety and welfare of Americans or any other right-thinking people around the world. Acceptance into this circle of mediocre trust is based on a willingness to set aside any semblance of independent or contrarian thought, and rely only on the opinions of established politicians, journalists, think-tankers, academics, critics and others who agree to play by these rules. This is why the Post Op-Ed editor could publish a columnist like Kathleen Parker and not know how offensive she really is to so many people. But, since she didn't offend or condescend to the white, working-class, the new guiding light of American politics, why shouldn't she have a say in the official newspaper (and racing form) of the nation's capital?

A full-blooded American standing up for other full-blooded Americans. What a relief!

1 comment:

Rich said...

Thought you might find this funny:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/cartoons/stevebell/0,,2281353,00.html