The left brings out the guns, and how conservatives should reply

I just watched NBC Evening News and in the lead segment Andrea Mitchell was pushing more than ever the leftist madness of which she is a hard-bitten and determined mouthpiece. Without a word of qualification she played Jimmy Carter’s interview with Brian Williams earlier in the day. In the interview, Carter did not merely repeat his previous statement that Rep. Wilson’s “You lie” was motivated by racial hostility. He went further, much further:

An overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man, that he’s African-American.

I live in the South, and I have seen the South come a long way. And I have seen the rest of the country that shared the South’s attitude toward minority groups at that time, particularly African- Americans. That racism in connection still exists.

And I think it’s bubbled up to the surface because of a belief among many white people, not just in the South, but around the country, that African-Americans are not qualified to lead this great country. It’s an abominable circumstance and grieves me and concerns me very deeply. [emphases added.]

According to Carter, it’s not just Wilson’s “You lie” that is racist, it is, at least by implication, the entire anti-national healthcare movement that is racist, since that movement is very strongly opposed to Obama. And this vigorous opposition to Obama’s program is nothing less than “abominable.”

Mitchell then played, again without a word of criticism, an interview with Bill Cosby who said he fully agreed with Carter and talked on and on about white racism in this country.

Pause for a moment and take in the unreality of this. We’ve been having a huge debate in this country on government control of healthcare. And suddenly we find ourselves being attacked as racists, as though we were Bull Connor using fire hoses on black demonstrators in Montgomery, Alabama.

At this page is the transcript of the Carter interview plus a discussion at CNN under the supervision of Anderson Cooper. The program includes a black CNN contributor named Roland Martin who says he agrees with Carter.

On NBC the White House spokesman was shown saying that he didn’t think that opposition to Obama’s policies had anything to do with Obama’s race. But he said it in a such low key way that it was meaningless and added up to nothing more than good cop / bad cop.

Thus the left is going all out, seeking to delegitimize and silence opposition to Obama Socialism on the basis that such opposition is driven by racism. If the policies of a black political leader cannot be legitimately opposed, that means the end of discussion, the end of disagreement, the end of politics, the end of freedom. Yet to my knowledge not a single mainstream conservative or GOP figures has called attention to what the left is doing.

Imagine if conservatives began to address the left along these lines:

“According to you, any stand against the policies of a leftist black president is racist and should cease. According to you, only those who agree with that leftist black president have a legitimate right to speak, and those who don’t are wicked and do not have the same right. Which means that you are trying to impose a leftist dictatorship over us, a dictatorship enforced by the charge of racism. Do you expect us not to notice this obvious threat? Do you expect us not to respond to it? If you regard us as racist for holding the positions we have, for trying to stop the government takeover of healthcare, if you declare that we are guilty of the greatest moral wickedness in the world and deserve to be silenced simply for believing what we believe, then how can you and we continue in the same society together? We’ll need two different societies. In the first society the policies of a president who happens to be nonwhite can be freely opposed as part of the normal give and take of politics; in the second society such opposition is condemned as “racist” and “abominable” and prohibited. When one side calls another side racist and abominable and seeks to silence them for holding reasonable views on vital national issues, when one side seeks to exclude the other from legitimate participation in politics, that is no longer the language of politics, it is the language of war.

“And if you object to what I just said, then I strongly suggest that your side stop speaking the language of war.”

If the conservatives began to call the left’s bluff and identify the real nature of what the left is doing, it would startle the left and push them back.

But instead the conservatives come out with pathetic variations on Rep. Wilson’s son’s lame defense of his father, “There’s not a racist bone in my dad’s body.” As though there were anything to the charge and he had to be defended from it. Which suggests that the racism is generally correct, only it’s not correct in this case, because Wilson “doesn’t have a racist bone.”

As always, Republicans and conservatives defend themselves from absurd charges of racism, thus validating their legitimacy, instead of putting the left on the defensive for using such charges in the first place. Such hopeless stupidity on the part of conservatives has long made me despair. But what the left is doing now is so outrageous that maybe the conservatives are finally starting to wake up.

- end of initial entry -

Marco Jawsario writes:

So the Left is doing what is has done so well for the past 40 years—play the racism card against conservative whites. This time it is Joe Wilson, even though there is no such evidence of his having associated with racists. Of course, in addition to Plan A, the Auster Option, which is unfortunately too complex for the average Red State Republican, there is Plan B—the “don’t call me a racist” defense. “I did not park my ass in a racist church for 20 years as the president did.” That would take guts, an entity also lacking among conservative.

A reader writes:

Rush Limbaugh’s topic this morning was, “Can We Really Have an African-American President?” Here is the transcript. .

Rush ended the segment with this:

So is it possible that we really [can] have an African-American president? Or does having an African-American president paralyze the process by which people with that kind of power in our representative republic are kept, quote, unquote, honest? I have a brief timeout here at which time I’m either going to explode in rage or I’m going to fix this audio problem, because I already started out in rage. This racism stuff has got everybody boiling mad because it’s such a lie; it’s such a cheap shot; it’s so dishonest.

LA replies:

OK! He understands it and he said it! I can’t believe it. Other people will start to say it now too.

He needed to expand on it more, but he at least made the basic point, I’m delighted.

LA writes:

I continue the discussion of Rush Limbaugh’s comment in the next entry.

September 17

David Levin writes:

A hard-bitten mouthpiece? Wonderful!

Rush is mistaken. Obama isn’t African American—he’s a mulatto.

Here’s what Rush said on September 22, 2008:

LIMBAUGH: These polls on how one-third of blue-collar white Democrats won’t vote for Obama because he’s black, and—but he’s not black. Do you know he has not one shred of African-American blood? He doesn’t have any African—that’s why when they asked whether he was authentic, whether he’s down for the struggle. He’s Arab. You know, he’s from Africa. He’s from Arab parts of Africa. He’s not—his father was—he’s not African-American. The last thing that he is is African-American. I guess that’s splitting hairs, I don’t—it’s just all these little things, everything seems upside-down today in this country.

and this site.

He’s a mulatto!!

LA replies:

You can’t expect people to refer to Obama as mulatto. That’s not the usage we have in this country. The usage we have is if a person is partly black, and identifies himself as black, then he’s black or African-American. The fact is that Obama is universally described as black or African-American. So if you’re commenting on the way people perceive Obama, you need to use the same terms for him that people generally use.

At the same time, I recognize that it’s problematic to call Obama simply “black,” so I often refer to him as nonwhite instead of black. But nonwhite is not inconsistent with American usage. Mulatto is.

Also, Limbaugh’s statement from 2008 has several mistakes. To describe Obama as Arab is off the wall. And of course Obama is African-American, in that he’s of African ancestry and he’s American.

Paul Gottfried writes:

The only thing that sounded more nauseating than the Carter diatribe against white Southerners and opponents of Obama-care was the cowardly response of the GOP leadership. Rep. Cantor refused even to respond to the attack on Joe Wilson as a racist but went into some spiel about how Republicans love blacks. Then Brit Hume, a semi-official Republican voice, delivered a speech on FOX about “how much we owe Dr. King for our present race consensus.” If this is what the GOP is offering as an alternative to the black messiah, then I’ll vote for Obama next time round—and wait for all hell to break loose.

Lee S. writes:

There comes a time in the life of every white southern liberal when he or she has to come to grips with his own feeling of shame in his own background and people. I have lived in Georgia my whole life. My family first came here in the 1780s. I was a liberal at one time and know how the minds of these people work.

We white southerners have committed many crimes against the black man. We have to answer to history for that. We have answered. We have tried to make amends. But for the Self-Hating Southerner (SHS) it is never enough.

I have traveled all over this country and this world and I have never seen a town where black people exert as much influence as in Atlanta, Georgia. They hold most of the seats on the Atlanta City Counsel. Their views dominate the Fulton Co. Commission. The legislative black caucus in the General Assembly is absolutely intimidating.

And it is not just in Atlanta. All over this state black elected officials exercise authority and political power. Until recently the Chief Judge of the State Supreme Court was a black female. She was easily re-elected state wide twice and stepped down to move to Washington. The state’s attorney general is black and has been re- elected state-wide twice. Same for the State Labor Commissioner. I often wonder what would be good enough the all the SHSs out there.

For the SHS, the idea that his family and ancestors mistreated the black man is too much to bear. He feels like he must always be seen making amends. He will make excuses for any black criminal no matter how vicious. It is always about saying “I might be from here but I am not of here and I am not like all these disgusting rednecks around me. I am different. Please see me as different!! I want you to feel good about me, I want to feel good about me.”

I tell you Mr. Auster, as a Georgian, Mr. Carter’s election was one of the proudest days of my life. To see him now giving aid and comfort to the most destructive and deranged forces of the American Left is a very depressing thing.

In the end, though, the SHS finds out what his “friends” in the Northeast and other parts of the country really think about him. I thought it was interesting that Carter made the trip to Massachusetts to sing the praises of the dead Kennedy, and then a few days later it came out that Teddy saw him as just another dumb redneck. It’s sad.

To be fair to Carter, with him I think to a large extent it is about wanting to feel relevant again. He is 84 now and nobody cares very much what he thinks.

Shrewsbury writes:

Suppose the murderously sanctimonious Jimmy Carter were correct, and much of the anti-Obama opposition were in fact motivated by racial consciousness. What would be so unspeakably horrible about that? Do Russians want a German president? Do the Irish want an English president? Do Nigerians want a white president? What is so utterly repugnant to everyone in American public life about different kinds of people living happily in their own different socities? It is ineffably pathetic that our national discourse on such matters always comes down to nothing more than, “You’re a racist!”—“No I’m not!”—“Are too!”—“Am not!”

What is more, this brouhaha causes Shrewsbury to worry that the always gormless Republicans will not dare run two white candidates for president in 2012. Normally, Republican primary voters robotically choose the next guy in line, even obvious political basket cases like Dole or McCain. Thus, were everything normal, they would select Romney in ‘12, and he would choose Huckabee for V.P., to mollify the Mormon-detesting evangelicals. But now, with an African-American in the White House, and the left apparently intending to ululate for the next 3½ years that any opposition to him is motivated solely by racial hatred…it’s impossible to imagine the Republicans daring to run a ticket in ‘12 consisting of two white men. (Oh, excuse me, “white boys,” to use the approved contemporary vernacular.) So this means a very weak ticket of Romney-Steele or something even worse, disaffected whites staying home again, and the possibility of Obama’s reelection.

Mike Berman writes:

I, for one, agree with Jimmy Carter when he states that many Americans cannot accept an African American as president because they don’t think blacks are “qualified” for the job. He’s right. With an illegitimacy rate of 71%, blacks have demonstrated that they are not even capable of running their own families. Why on earth should we want them running the country?

LA replies:

Both the above comments are off-base and misonstrue this issue. The tea-party demonstrations, the townhalls, the march on Washington, are not driven by Obama’s race, but by the issues listed in Neil Bortz’s column. Do Shrewsbury and Mike Berman really imagine that all those people would be supporting Obama’s policies, if only he were white?

Shrewsbury and Mr. Berman are mixing up their own issues, which go to the larger question of race and American identity, with the specific issues driving the tea-partyers, and they thus are doing an injustice to the latter. They are seeing the tea-partyers through the filter of their own preoccupations, and not seeing them as they are.

Ferg writres:

The pot calls the kettle black. The left are the racists, they see race at the heart of everything and anything. Therefore the right must be motivated by race as well. I have had left liberals tell me that having guns is bad because they can not trust themselves to not get really angry and GO POSTAL and kill a bunch of people. I have gone armed for over six years now and never had the slightest urg to Go POSTAL or do any harm to anyone. Being armed in fact has made me more conscious of the need to be polite and considerate to other people. This is called being a responsible adult. It also has the side effect of making life more pleasent.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 16, 2009 08:30 PM | Send

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