Was Hillary wrong to say that whites support her?
When former president Clinton dismissed Obama in South Carolina as just another Jesse Jackson, that was, in my view, a racial insult. I don’t feel the same way about Hillary’s interview with USA Today this week in which she quoted an AP story that, in her words, “found how Sen. Obama’s support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me.”
But Peggy Noonan, the fragile flower of the Wall Street Journal, is sickened that Hillary would make any explicit reference to—yecchh—white people:
White Americans? Hard-working white Americans? “Even Richard Nixon didn’t say white,” an Obama supporter said, “even with the Southern strategy.”…I don’t get it. Don’t the Democrats constantly boast about their overwhelming black support and the advantage this gives them over Republicans, and nobody gets sick over it? And don’t the Republicans talk endlessly about their (endlessly frustrated) desire to win black support, and no mother in the land feels she has to shield her children from such vile statements? Why then is it so wrong for Hillary to say that she has more white working class support than Obama?
Even more, why is it wrong for her to point out Obama’s lack of support among the white working class, given Obama’s sweeping, negative statements about white working class people and whites in general? He said in a radio interview on March 20th:
The point I was making was not that my grandmother harbors any racial animosity, but that she is a typical white person. If she sees somebody on the street that she doesn’t know (pause) there’s a reaction in her that doesn’t go away and it comes out in the wrong way.Meaning white people have an irrational negative reaction against nonwhite people which they harbor and which comes out as bigoted statements of the kind that would make the teenaged Barack Obama feel that he had been punched in the stomach, which was his reaction to the horrible, traumatic realization that the beggar who had persistently accosted his grandmother at a bus stop and made her afraid to take the bus was black. This single, completely non-blameworthy response by his grandmother to a beggar was constructed by Obama, both as a teenager, and as a presidential candidate, into a vicious generalization about all white people.
If any white candidate had spoken so condescendingly of “typical black people” as Obama spoke of “typical white people,” he would have been out of the race, at least barring a several-day-long, standing-in-the-snow type apology.
Topping his “typical white person” comment, Obama said in April in at a private fund raiser in San Francisco:
You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.In other words, according to Obama, the reason white working class people believe in God is not that they believe in God. They believe in God out of economic dislocation, which Oba Man can fix, relieving them of their artificial need to believe in God. The reason they like guns and believe in the right to bear arms is not that they like guns and believe in the right to bear arms. They believe in guns because they’re permanently bitter at life—sort of like Michelle Obama.
Thus in his radio comment Obama stunningly insulted white people, and in his San Francisco fund-raiser comment he gravely insulted working class white people. And he has not retracted these statements in any meaningful way but has repeated them. Isn’t it natural and reasonable, then, for white working class people not to support Obama, but to support the other candidate who does not insult them? And why is it wrong for that other candidate to talk about this fact?
Adela G. writes:
Yes, Hillary was wrong to say whites support her.
Ben W. writes:
Obama says about his grandmother, “She is a typical white person.” Typical means of a type. Does Obama not want his grandmother to be of the type white person? What type could she be if not a white person? Wasn’t she born of the type white person?
Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 10, 2008 11:49 AM | Send