The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Thursday, February 01, 2007

I hate Politics...

It's a dirty game, and a single misstep can trash an otherwise worthy candidate. Now, I know nothing about Biden, but this, just in the New York times...

"Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, who announced his candidacy on Wednesday with the hope that he could ride his foreign policy expertise into contention for the Democratic nomination, instead spent the day struggling to explain his description of Senator Barack Obama, the Illinois Democrat running for president, as “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy.” "

Can obviously be explained as an attempt to say this:
"Senator Barack Obama, the Illinois Democrat, is the first African American running for president with a chance to really compete in the mainstream of American politics. A terrific candidate, he is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy."

Now, if I'd heard him say that, I would still have a slight sense of condescension--white candidates never say things like that about each other. It's a little like the way white people love to rush up to me and say how "articulate" I am. I know where it's coming from, and am not insulted--it's hard to get over three hundred years of brainwashing saying that black people are mush-mouthed (especially when too damned many athletes and rappers in the public eye seem all too eager to prove the stereotype right). But you can be certain that Biden's campaign just died, before it could flap a wing. Pity. I would have enjoyed hearing his ideas. And by the way--when I first heard this, I assumed he was a Republican, and had the identical reaction, and would have posted this just as quickly.

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