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Progressives always deal from a deck full of race cards, and possibly never more outrageously so than last week on Thursday’s edition of MSNBC’s The Cycle. Its panel of pundits was discussing Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney‘s call for President Obama to “take your campaign of division and anger and hate back to Chicago.” A black co-host read racial connotations underlying Romney’s phrasing which he claimed signaled the “niggerization” of President Obama. You read that right.
The co-host, who for some reason goes by the single name Touré (perhaps he fancies himself in the same league as Cher and Madonna), said this of Romney’s speech:
That really bothered me. You notice he said anger twice. He’s really trying to use racial coding and access some really deep stereotypes about the angry black man. This is part of the playbook against Obama, the “otherization,” he’s not like us.
On the “otherization” point, I have to agree with Touré – Obama is definitely not like us, if by “us” he means Americans who love their country, believe in its exceptionalism, and don’t want to see it turned into a socialist, Muslim Brotherhood dystopia. By that characterization, skin color is irrelevant. But of course, to race-mongers like Touré, skin color is the alpha and omega of their political consciousness and identity. They are incapable of perceiving anything except through the lens of race. For them, there can be no other explanation apart from color for Romney and his racist white Republican constituency to oppose the (half-)black Obama. This is a useful perspective to hold when your candidate cannot run on his record alone.
“I know it’s a heavy thing,” Touré acknowledged. “I don’t say it lightly, but this is ‘niggerization.’ You are not one of us, you are like the scary black man who [sic] we’ve been trained to fear.”
By “we,” Touré certainly isn’t including himself. He’s referring to white America, which in the left’s view is inherently, irredeemably racist and which in the post-civil rights era is forced to communicate its racism to each other in impossibly subtle, fiendishly clever ways – like “racial coding.”
“Racial coding,” as defined by pundit Juan Williams, is a sort of winking between a white speaker and audience that consists of “euphemisms allowing the speaker to deny any responsibility for the racial content of his message.” As examples, Williams offers phrases such as “entitlement society,” “poor work ethic,” and “food stamps,” all of which are obviously code phrases for “black people” in the race-obsessed minds of Williams and his ilk. Even “references to a lack of respect for the ‘Founding Fathers’ and the ‘Constitution’” are coded racism, says Williams. This ingenuous tactic allows the left to infuse racism into every word that issues forth from the mouth of a white conservative (or a black one, for that matter, since leftists don’t consider black conservatives to be truly black). Through this patently false narrative they can maintain a perpetual accusation of racism where it doesn’t exist.
“Anger”? That’s racial coding to inspire fear of the angry black man stereotype. Therefore conservatives aren’t allowed to accurately identify the tone of Obama’s campaign. “Food stamps”? That’s racial coding for, as Jimmy Carter put it, “welfare mammies.” Carter and CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, who couldn’t be more solidly in the tank for Obama, accused Newt Gingrich on the campaign trail of racial coding when he accurately labeled Obama “the food-stamp president” (O’Brien falsely claimed that there were more food stamp recipients under Bush).
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