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13 March 2008

Comments

Ryan Canty

I watched parts of her interview when it aired the other day...

As much as I love Ferraro and what she stands for, she did put her foot in her mouth.

I don't think Obama's campaign has had the popularity it has because he's black..i think that's a BIG part of it. People are attracted to the "hypnotic rhetoric" he expouses in his speeches and platforms. As for whether or not this can truly translate into concrete ideals and goals the blue collar, working class and grasp onto and accept remains to be seen.

But, I do feel that Ferraro did expose how many of those pseudo-liberal..."arbiters of racism in the "progressive" white e-telligentisa who peck away at their keyboards from condos in DuPont Circle and San Francisco" and I would also add, Chelsea, The Village, and parts of the Upper East and West Side (Rod, can I take this quote from you? GENIUS!) truly feel about Obama, Ferraro and ANY person who is about change...

What bothers me most is that these pundits, and many "liberals" alike, are ignoring the fact that race is still going to be a painful narrative that many Americans either dont want to address, or aren't capable of addressing.

A black man running for president isn't going to change that.

Nor, is a white woman running for president going to change the patriarchal, old school discourse that has been happening for CENTURIES against women...specifically, women who are in positions of power or have power.

let's face it folks...these latest attacks are just indicative of how people in this country refuse to acknowledge how their perspectives and world view are clouded by issues or race and class...why people dont get that is beyond me.

Derrick from Philly

Well, you have to be careful what you say in politics, especially during a presidential election, a EXTRA CAREFUL during this presidential primary election.

"...because he's black"

She should have QUICKLY added, "...and also because he's charismatic, brilliant and next to Hillary, the most qualified to be president." But she didn't. When you get old you just don't think fast enough. I know, I'm getting there.

Girlfriend is just another casualty of the 2008 Democratic Presidential Primary. Bye, Miss 1984 Thaing.

Ryan

Are you serious, Derrick? Read your quote:

She should have QUICKLY added, "...and also because he's charismatic, brilliant and next to Hillary, the most qualified to be president."

I'm not going to say Ferraro was right in saying what many people do think is the truth...she was wrong for that and is suffering the consequences for what she said.

But,s ince when was Obama the most qualified candidate for office? says WHO? How is he any less qualified than Hillary when BOTH are saying the same thing, more of less?

I'm just curious..how is he more qualified than her? explain that...

TheRevKev

I think that I am missing a few things:

What does Senator Clinton have on her record that is so exponentially more experienced than Senator Obama?

How was Ms. Ferraro truthful in saying that "if he weren't black" an accurate statement and why are so many Blacks co-signing the 'affirmative action access' to greatness, when that denounces our work ethic and intellect?

How do we ignore the statements from Ms. Ferraro, from 1984, that said virtually the exact same thing, thus doing a Bill Clinton in saying Obama is no difference than Jackson and they are both Black and that's all that they have going for them?

When did "CHANGE" and the power and possibility of it, especially in the age of "THE SECRET," "A NEW EARTH" and so much other help-yourself empowerment, become an empty promise?

I appreciated the MSNBC commentator for wailing on THE CLINTON CAMPAIGN for not saying WE ARE BETTER THAN THIS! Why does Senator Obama have to DENOUNCE Minister Farrakhan, who is connected to him through his pastor but not directly, but Senator Clinton doesn't DENOUNCE a fellow former (vice) presidential candidate who should under the delicacy of the politics of race and gender.

At the end of the day, after Billary and the comments about race and worthiness; Clinton and her acidic 3AM ad of fear and terror and other moments of Rove-like politics, I AM DONE WITH CLINTON. PERIOD.

Andrew C

>>>the new arbiters of racism in the "progressive" white e-telligentisa who peck away at their keyboards from condos in DuPont Circle and San Francisco<<<

LMAO. Okay, we always disagree on Clinton vs Obama, but you really have a way with words.

Of course you're right that Obama is using race to his advantage. But so is Clinton. I can't blame either one.

TheRevKev

I DID READ THE "REQUIRED READING" OF THE NEW REPUBLIC ARTICLE/ESSAY AND WAS PARTICULARLY INTRIGUED BY THIS PARAGRAPH:

The Clinton campaign, in fact, has not racialized the campaign, and never had any reason to do so. Rather the Obama campaign and its supporters, well-prepared to play the "race-baiter card" before the primaries began, launched it with a vengeance when Obama ran into dire straits after his losses in New Hampshire and Nevada--and thereby created a campaign myth that has turned into an incontrovertible truth among political pundits, reporters, and various Obama supporters. This development is the latest sad commentary on the malign power of the press, hyping its own favorites and tearing down those it dislikes, to create pseudo-scandals of the sort that hounded Al Gore during the 2000 campaign. It is also a commentary on how race can make American politics go haywire. Above all, it is a commentary on the cutthroat, fraudulent politics that lie at the foundation of Obama's supposedly uplifting campaign.


AM I CONFUSED? DID FORMER PRESIDENT CLINTON NOT LIKEN SENATOR OBAMA TO JESSE JACKSON WHEN HE DISMISSED HIS PRIMARY VICTORY IN SOUTH CAROLINA? DID THE FORMER PRESIDENT NOT BECOME VOCAL AND PERTURBED WHEN IT LOOKED LIKE BLACK AMERICA WASN'T FOLLOWING "THE FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT" AND HIS WIFE BACK INTO THE WHITE HOUSE?

I am not one to call Senator Clinton a monster. I have read her book and watched her steadiness in her life and in a world that vilifies women with her tenacity and audacious presence. But for anyone to suggest that just because she's a woman means she wouldn't play the race card (her or Ferraro) is as ridiculous as me believing that Obama would use patriarchal, misogynistic language just because he's black.

At the end of the day, this is American Politics and all bets are off when we get into the Arena of Power.

I know that Geraldine Ferraro is a seasoned stateswoman who gets to speak her mind, but if her mind believes that Black folks only win 12 primaries in a row and only raise $55 million in a month and only garner record attendance at a political function where people come because they believe in CHANGE...AS IN DOING IT DIFFERENTLY...because he is Black and FOR NO OTHER REASON (and yes, if she had other reasons, I would have loved to have heard them stated in the several times that she has continued to make these statements), then I'm clear now. I have such a deeper fear of the devil I don't know than the devil I know.

(I can't believe I have all of this to say today, but you wrote such a masterful piece that I found myself delving into my thoughts.)

Senator Clinton faced SO many of these same questions, innuendos and such when she ran as the Senator of a state in which she had never lived until after the White House. She withstood vile detractors who questioned her capability, her power-hungry pursuit of the Senate, her ethics and so many other things about her--so many that were personal that I found it offensive. Yet, Senator Hillary Rodman Clinton stood and I am proud of Senator Barack Hussein Obama for doing the same.

Me

The whole reaction to this is bullshit to me. This is black and white. Life is black and white. BOTH of them are playing on their status as minorities in this race and in the free world. Is part of the reason he's in this position because he's black? As Don C. used to say back in the day on Soul Train, you can bet your last money! Granted, she should not have said it out loud, but it's the truth. My thing is, if people can't handle this sort of thing now what is it gonna be like if he gets elected? Anytime somebody says something along these lines - and they will, so we may as well prepare for it - folks are gonna get all bent out of shape and say race is no factor? If you've got black people saying they are voting for him because he's black, race is a factor. If you've got white folks folking for him because he's black and THEY don't view him as such, race is a factor. Same with Hills being a woman.

This is a glaring example of why this country is not ready for a black president. It seems like the mere mention of the word black gets folks in a tizzy, a lot of times for no reason at all. That says a lot. Things have not come as far as people want to believe they have. There is no question race is part of where he's at, but it isn't the only factor. It's just silly for people to try to sweep race issues under the rug in this election like they don't exist.

Like I said in another post, I'm sure I'll be called everything but a child of god, but oh well. I've been called worse.

b.

Barack Hussein Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Barack Hussein Obama Sr. (black muslim) of Nyangoma-Kogelo, Siaya District, Kenya, and Ann Dunham of Wichita, Kansas. (white atheist ).

When Obama was two years old, his parents divorced and his father returned to Kenya. His mother married Lolo Soetoro — a Muslim — moving to Jakarta with Obama when he was six years old. Within six months he had learned to speak the Indonesian language. Obama spent “two years in a Muslim school, then two more in a Catholic school” in Jakarta. Obama takes great care to conceal the fact that he is a Muslim while admitting that he was once a Muslim, mitigating that damning information by saying that, for two years, he also attended a Catholic school.

Obama’s father, Barack Hussein Obama, Sr. was a radical Muslim who migrated from Kenya to Jakarta, Indonesia. He met Obama’s mother, Ann Dunham-a white atheist from Wichita, Kansas-at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Obama, Sr. and Dunham divorced when Barack, Jr. was two.

Obama’s spinmeisters are now attempting to make it appear that Obama’s introduction to Islam came from his father and that influence was temporary at best.

In reality, the senior Obama returned to Kenya immediately following the divorce and never again had any direct influence over his son’s education.

Dunham married another Muslim, Lolo Soetoro who educated his stepson as a good Muslim by enrolling him in one of Jakarta’s Wahabbi schools. Wahabbism is the radical teaching that created the Muslim terrorists who are now waging Jihad on the industrialized world.

Since it is politically expedient to be a Christian when you are seeking political office in the United States, Obama joined the United Church of Christ to help purge any notion that he is still a Muslim.

anon

sorry to say i think the senator that said the terrorists would be dancing in the street if obama were elected president is correct, should that effect how we vote, some say no, i say yes, it bothers me to think that the terrorists will think this is a good sign for them, and worse, i bet it bothers people in the military,

Derrick from Philly

Ryan:

I was saying what Ferraro as a Clinton supporter should have said. SHe believes (or pretends to ) believe that Hillary is the most qualified. As a Hillary supporter BUT ALSO A GOOD DEMOCRAT she should have made sure that she said she also believes Barack is qualified. Instead, she made Barack seem unqualified--just like all those black folks who got jobs due to affirmative action just because they were black. That shit plays well among whites in Yankee states.

No, Ryan, I didn't flip back over to the Hillary Camp. I'm just pointing out what an unnecessary mistake Ferraro made and how easily she could have fixed it. Or was it a mistake? Maybe she didn't want to fix it.

Ryan

Me:

Fantastic observation...you and I both know that MOST of the people in this post will go after you...

and, people need to WAKE UP and realize that MANY people feel as you do..and the numbers have been GROWING..

people do get into a serious tizzy about Obama..but can't seem to explain WHY they are in a tizzy? I just find it really interesting..and hilarious.

Ryan

Derrick:

I never got the impression that geraldine suggested or even intimated barack wasn't qualified to be president at all...

i saw most of that interview and i do feel that obama IS getting a lot of the buzz because is quailfied..but he's also getting it because he's black.

if obama was a white man, id have to concede to ferraro and say that, yes, NO ONE would care. just like she got press because she was a woman running for president (well as the running mate) in 1984...

ferraro exposed the fact that so many people in this country are caught up in race...and not focused on the election at hand and WHO is the best candidate for office.

hey, if you want to vote for the man because he's black, fine. more power to you...

im voting for the BEST candidate for the job...and it's been pretty clear since day one who i support.

Hassan

If Barack Obama’s father is a Muslim, so is Obama. If you know him once or all your life. Being Muslim is a right a passage.

Rod McCullom

RevKev, as always you are very impassioned and have some great observations.

I know my opinion is in the minority in the black coimmunity, which is okay, but it does seem to me that Obama campaign and its surrogates constantly use race. Constantly. And then say "Oh, no, we're tryting to transform race." They can't be, with Jesse Jackson Jr and other surrogates publicly pressuring black superdelegates to switch to Obama. Or calling Clinton everything under the sun. So when Clinton supporters or surrogates say something it's "calculated" but with Obama supporters or surriogates its spontaneous?

Ferraro was not working for the campaign. She was a fundraiser.
But she has a long list of accomplishments helping our community. She said it came out wrong. Ok, I beleive her. So why won't we accept her apology, but are so willing to accept MCCAIN's "apologies" for his racist talk radio friends?

Bobby

Saying "I'm sorry you were offended" is not an apology.

nolavision

So Obama sometimes benefits from being black, and Clinton sometimes benefits from being a woman and President Clinton's wife. So what? Both of them just as easily DON'T benefit from those things too. Again, so what? If Obama weren't black, maybe he wouldn't be where he is right now, but then again maybe he would, and if Clinton wasn't a woman or the wife of President Clinton maybe she wouldn't be where she is right now either, but then again maybe she would. Again, so what??? How is this conversation helpful?

Amidst all the fevered backlash to Ferraro's clearly inappropriate comments, Ferraro manages to earn points for "getting it right." Sure, she got a SMALL part of "it" right (that Obama benefits from being black) but she left the real meat of the broader point completely out (that he also doesn't benefit from it, and that Clinton both does and doesn't benefit from being a woman and President Clinton's wife), and then there's all the other reasons why people are either for or against a candidate. Whatever. If you're going to go there then damn, make it a nuanced, fully fleshed out comment which doesn't drag us all down even further into the gutter.

Sorry, Ferraro saying nothing at all would have been an infinitely smarter choice here. Instead we get the Ferraro Belittling-Racial-Remark-Express which quickly turned into a total trainwreck the more she tried to defend herself, and then within hours she had turned into the white victim. OMG, I'd be laughing if all wasn't so unnecessary and counterproductive for both candidates, the primary, and the Democratic party.

TheRevKev

On Good Morning America, Ferraro said that "I said misquoted" and "no, I don't take a word of it."

I am not a "black folk" who believes McCain's apologies and would never vote for him and I don't care about his middle of the road politics. He's not a friend of mine.

I have been watching Ferraro, which I am now able to do with my mind having completely separated her from the Clinton campaign, and I am floored and how insistent she is on this point and how she won't budge from it.

As for Clinton, I have other issues with her and Ferraro's verbal hiccup is way down the list. But at the end of the day, I am floored at how brilliant she and her camp are playing a very Rove-like style of campaigning. While she and Obama have come to verbal blows, her camp seems to be coming after him like he's the enemy. I know that she's already trying to campaign like he's out of the way and focusing on the republican party, but he is NOT out of the way. To offer VP post. To not have denounced Ferraro when she called on him to use REJECT and he used DENOUNCE, suggesting it was stronger language, on the Farrakhan matter, shows a tactical stance in this brouhau that is making me not trust Senator Clinton in some very fundamental ways.

At the end of the day, these two are BOTH, yes I said it--BOTH--playing foul politics and there is almost NO WAY EVER that a Obama/Clinton ticket in any version could ever happen.

Oddly, at the end of all of this, I am loving that we are being this rigorous and fired-up about politics in America. I just hope that we all benefit from it in the end and something like Change comes out of the dance!

TheRevKev

NOLAVISION.

I AM COMPLETELY SILENCED BY YOUR POINT.

BRILLIANT.

NOTHING MORE TO SAY. JUST READ IT. AGREE WITH IT. NOTHING LEFT TO SAY!

merv.

i have to disagree with you rod on this. she could have said what she said in a paper with a circulation of 3 people-- it doesn't matter. you had better bet clinton media strategists knew that kinda shit was going to get picked up and repeated--- over and over again. as a media professional myself, i count on that kind of free airtime to move a message.

so yeah, she might have said it in the daily sandmite, but at the end of the day she continued to repeat it and so did every pundit on every network--- all weekend and all day yesterday. you can't buy that kind of exposure.

she did not apologize or put her foot in her mouth at all. in fact, this has been her talking point at every speech she has given over the past 6 months. its her stump speech. her resignation, ultimately, results in a small loss for the campaign-- she still fundraises for clinton, they say they took action, and the message has stuck.

clinton never apologized or took ownership for the actions of others-- something obama has had to do multiple times and has done so swiftly.

and, rep. stephanie tubbs-jones of ohio, an actual surrogate of the campaign (unlike ferraro), was on tv today defending this woman.

so, clinton has not apologized and her campaign has defended her. seems like a win-win for her strategists and moving a message of fear of an affirmative-action president.

ill also point out that ferraro *was* actually an affirmative action candidate-- as vp, you are chosen, handpicked. you can't really say the same for obama. maybe shes a little salty about that--

and i dont give two squats about any legislation she passed, if she offers to use it in her defense of her ridiculousness.

Rod McCullom

Merv. Ferraro does not work for the campaign, never did, she is simply a prominent supporter. Do you really believe "the Clinton campaign" dispatched Ferraro to suburban Los Angeles to say something crazy ... and just sit around and wait until maybe someone picked it up? It's far more efficient to just go on CNN or MSNBC.

NOLA, agree with much of what you said. The statement should have been nuanced.

nobama

give me my buick oprah,,,,,,,or else,,,,,,,,or else,,,,,or else i wont break any arms at the caucuses

Mohammed

sorry to say i think the senator that said the terrorists would be dancing in the street if obama were elected president is correct, should that effect how we vote, some say no, i say yes, it bothers me to think that the terrorists will think this is a good sign for them, and worse, i bet it bothers people in the military,

X

Terrorist will dance in the street if any democrat wins office. They’ve all said they want to get the troops out of Iraq ASAP. Also, its the American media’s fault. They continue to paint Obama as a radical Muslim. These people get their news from us. So if they think Obama is “one of their own” of course they are going to celebrate his election. That is until he bombs them.

Chris

Rod,

Respectfully, I think you are being hypocritical. You say that Obama is playing the race card but so are you. Don't we want white folks to call other white folks on their racism? I work with young white students every day trying to get them to challenge racism. Should they be sanctimonious? Not at all and if these white bloggers are, they should be called out on it. If they know more about racism than the people who experience it (and many do), we should challenge it. But I do not see these progressive (why your quotations, are you trying to diminish what them) white bloggers doing that necessarily.

I think she did not go far enough in her analysis because she is looking through a racialized lens. Will I still be thankful for the work she did. Of course but that does not give you a pass when you do something wrong.

Tony R

>>> Respectfully, I think you are being hypocritical. You say that Obama is playing the race card but so are you.

Chris, no offense but how could Rod be "hypocritical" on charges of racism? Are you saying he doesn't want to end it or expose it? I've been following his argument for some time and he makes a point. Clinton sometimes uses gender (or sexism) to her benefit, Obama sometimes uses race (and racism) to his benefit. Why do we keep denying what we know is true?

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