Posted on | January 28, 2010 | 27 Comments
Raina Kelley of Newsweek had the blog post title of the day. She’s not the only MSM type noticing Vanilla McTingly’s awkward SOTU moment:
- Jay Bookman, Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “I can sympathize with the risks of talking on national TV for a living, but . . . that’s disturbing. Not said with bad intent, perhaps, but strange that he thought he had to go there with so much else to be said.”
- Brian Montopoli, CBS News: “Speaking to Rachel Maddow later in the evening, Matthews clarified the comments, saying he was ‘very proud’ he made them.”
- Steve Padilla, Los Angeles Times: “Well, at least he didn’t say President Obama doesn’t speak with a Negro dialect.”
- Rachel Netter, ABC News: “Matthews quickly tried to clarify his comments on ‘The Rachel Maddow Show’ by saying he was simply proud that race seemed to have no place in Wednesday’s address, but the initial comment reflects the racial taunts and innuendos that have punctuated Obama’s first year in office.”
“Taunts and innuendos”? Maybe my dog-whistle hearing has failed. Ta-Nehisi Coates of the Atlantic (whose blog post title is a close second to Raina Kelley’s) plumbs the clogged-up toilet of Matthews’ mind:
But I think it’s most worth noting that “I forgot Obama was black” — in all its iterations — is something that white people should stop saying, if only because it’s really dishonest. . . .
In fact, Chris Matthews didn’t forget Barack Obama was black. Chris Matthews forgot that Chris Matthews was white. . . .
At some point that number of white people who still can’t get their heads around our humanity will have to accept the truth: the president is black, even if you don’t quite know what that means.
Coates strays a bit toward identity-politics indignation in that post, but I can relate to the felt need to represent when dealing with a dishonest insult. It’s the “don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining” reaction, and I can certainly sympathize with Coates’ rage at being patronized by the Pillsbury Doughboy.