Wednesday, September 10, 2008
New York Governor Patterson accuses McCain camp of uses race
Making fun of "Community Organizer"
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ New York Gov. David Paterson said Tuesday that there were racial overtones in the Republican presidential ticket's criticism of Democrat Barack Obama's work as a community organizer."There are overtones of potential racial coding in the campaign," Paterson said at an event in New York City.
Paterson said that while Republican candidates John McCain and Sarah Palin haven't directly talked about race, it's strongly implied in comments Alaska Gov. Palin and others have made about Obama. McCain's camp said Paterson's claim is false."The Republican party is too smart to call Barack Obama 'black' in a sense that it would be a negative," Paterson said. "But you can take something about his life, which I noticed they did at the Republican convention. A 'community organizer,' they kept saying it, they kept laughing, like what does this mean?"It means that an individual who could have gone to Wall Street and made a lot of money, and then run for office because he could buy media time, chose to go back and work in programs in a neighborhood where he thought he could make a difference and became an elected official based on his involvement right in his own community," said Paterson, a Democrat who is the state's first black governor.
Obama, the Democratic presidential nominee, often talks about the three years he spent working as a community organizer in Chicago.Peter Feldman, a spokesman for Sen. McCain, said Paterson's accusation is untrue."This is a tactic that the Obama campaign has used before, and which McCain campaign manager Rick Davis correctly called divisive, shameful, and wrong," Feldman said. "Gov. Palin's remark about Barack Obama's work as a community organizer was in response to the Obama campaign's belittling of her executive experience."At the Republican National Convention last week, Palin compared her work as a small-town mayor to Obama's as a community organizer."Since our opponents in this presidential election seem to look down on that experience, let me explain to them what the job involves. I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a 'community organizer,' except that you have actual responsibilities," she said then.Feldman says Palin's comments were a response to insults about her own political experience.
It is very rare that I agree with an accusation concerning racial insuations or racial politics generally because most of the time it is in the minds of liberals and African Americans rather than in reality. However, in this case I'm on the fence which leads me to believe there is something to this charge. Problem is, "the boy who cried wolf" gets ignored and rightfully so.
I think the McCain camp knows that attacking Obama as a "community organizer" with "no responsibilities" is the stereotype of many civil rights leaders, and places him in a "black box" that is by definition apart from mainstream values. Yet, we Obama supporters have done the same to McCain when it comes to his age. I don't think this matters much except if the Obama team becomes complainers rather than a campaigners.
The Obama camp and all supporters should move on to the issues of the day, and the character of John McCain. McCain has shown he is willing to say and doo whatever it takes to win the Presidency contrary to the public image of being a maverick. Since the end of the immigration debate, McCain has been moving to placate the right-wing (successfully), culminating in his choice of Governor Palin over favored Lieberman or Ridge.
I am like most Americans in that I don't want a President who is a whiner. Ditto to their supporters. Get in the game or be quiet. No protesting.
making the word "liberal" safe again!