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Sorry, Democrats, Racism Isn't Everywhere (Opinion of a 'Liberal')
New York Daily News ^ | 9/16/09 | Michael Meyers

Posted on 09/16/2009 9:54:31 AM PDT by nickcarraway

When a President's prime-time speech is interrupted by a congressman with the accusation of "You lie!" that is something to talk about. But it is hard to decide who is stricken with a more severe American pathology: the ideologues who can't stop themselves from text-messaging or shouting insults at the President while he's talking to them or the demagogues who can't stop crying racism simply because not every citizen is enamored with America's first black President.

There is grandstanding and tomfoolery on both sides: The tea party crowd protests with signs that depict President Obama as Hitler, and the left quickly plays the race card - saying that such protest is "hate speech" and is directed at Obama only because of his skin color.

As any history student or veteran of the civil rights movement knows, Presidents (all of them white) have always been targets of epithets and subjects of caricature. Some were accused of "murder" and "racist" genocide - including the man from Missouri who dropped two A-bombs, and FDR who authorized the internment of innocent Japanese Americans into concentration camps. Lyndon Baines Johnson, a former segregationist who was adored by many blacks for his anti-segregationist policies as President, was driven into political exile over his insistence on waging and "winning" an unpopular war against the Vietnamese. And, lest we forget, Richard Nixon was oftentimes depicted with a short mustache. George W. Bush, too, was drawn as a monkey and as worse by protesters and artists.

We are a country with a vicious, personal political streak. That's who we are.

It is wrong to believe that in 21st century America, Barack Obama, simply because his skin color is darker than that of other Presidents, can or should be spared similar harsh treatment - including slurs, discourtesy and unwarranted comparisons with Adolf Hitler. Obama isn't the first and he won't be the last President to be hated by angry parts of America - on the left and right.

Perhaps his election ushered in a postracial period of good feelings, but a postracial America never envisioned a silencing of old-fashioned protests or any permanent era of civility. That's not the American way. In our free country, we simultaneously decry and feel pangs of guilt and shame and conscience - or don't - but we always tolerate "hate" and political speech that we don't like and the grotesque signs that depict our Presidents as buffoons, jackasses, apes and even murderers. Our American President does not merit the protections or courtesies and bows accorded a king.

In truth, the protesters on the right who think of Obama as a radical and foreigner and those on the left who treat him as some kind of saint or savior are brothers and sisters under the skin. They're both wrong.

Obama's address on health care reform is a case in point of both sides being wrong.

To my ears, Obama's speech before Congress was a bundle of contradictions - one big, fat lie. I did not buy his claim that real health care reform, the kind we on the left can believe in, won't add a "dime" or even a penny to our out-of-control federal deficit. Nor did I hear anything credible from him about controlling the skyrocketing costs of Medicare and Medicaid. The promises he listed simply did not add up. I said to myself - not being on the floor of Congress at the time - "you lie." That heretical thought did not make me a "racist." Nor did the expression of the idea make Joe Wilson a "racist."

Wilson was, to be sure, boorishly rude, the kind of rudeness we have witnessed in town hall meetings from the left and the right. And Wilson broke with the decorum of Congress. But it is not because he hails from the South or was once a member of the Sons of the Confederacy or directed his outburst at America's first black President that his utterance can be deemed "racist." He surely did not say or intend the N-word or "boy." Those who claim he did are either fantasizing or engaging in racial histrionics.

Indeed, I think those who so cavalierly play the race card are actually insulting Obama. When Obama's supporters feverishly play the race card they know exactly what they're doing - they are trying to stop the conversation. But Obama says he wants to encourage dialogue, so the racialists who back him do him no favor.

America's racist past cannot be denied, but the kind of real racism that was once popularly supported is finished, for good. As Obama himself says, there is now no black race or white race. In any serious discussion about health care coverage, we are therefore obliged to face this hard truth: We don't withhold a blood transfusion from anyone who needs it, whether or not they can pay, whether or not they're black or white or legal or illegal.

The only issue is who pays: Who pays the bill to keep us from contracting communicable diseases from one another and for ensuring our well-being and personal security from a catastrophic wipeout if our insurance doesn't kick in or if coverage is denied?

These are fair questions, not racial in cast.

Someone once asked, "Can't we all just get along?"

Maybe not. But can't we disagree with the President and oppose what he has to say as a "lie" without interrupting him while he is speaking?

By the same token, can't those who object to Obamacare and an Obama Nation be recognized as wholly within their rights to speak up and to ridicule the man who temporarily occupies the White House, without having to genuflect and bow before the President?

As a liberal, I must ask: Why can't liberals who support Obama make an intelligent argument without accusing those who disagree with us of racism, and sideswiping other liberals who, like me, when I heard Obama's speech, reflexively agreed with Wilson's sentiment - to wit, "Mr. President, you lie!"?

Meyers is executive director of the New York Civil Rights Coalition.


TOPICS: Editorial; Extended News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: democrats; healthcare; obama; racecard; racism

1 posted on 09/16/2009 9:54:32 AM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

“As a liberal, I must ask: Why can’t liberals who support Obama make an intelligent argument without accusing those who disagree with us of racism, and sideswiping other liberals who, like me, when I heard Obama’s speech, reflexively agreed with Wilson’s sentiment - to wit, “Mr. President, you lie!”? “

That is a powerful sentence.


2 posted on 09/16/2009 9:56:51 AM PDT by Buck W. (The President of the United States IS named Schickelgruber...)
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To: nickcarraway

Excellent!


3 posted on 09/16/2009 9:59:00 AM PDT by RaiderRose (Obama has cured my husband's political apathy.)
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To: nickcarraway

Racism on both sides, eh?

Big difference between a guy in a crowd with a sign and a former President of the United States, Congressmen, Representatives, etc.

I’m sick of the “both sides are acting badly” argument.

Democrat leadership has consistently shown they are valueless, biased and in need of quite a few hours of intense therapy.


4 posted on 09/16/2009 10:01:12 AM PDT by milford421 (U.N. OUT OF U.S.)
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To: nickcarraway

Sorry, I’m not accepting ANY comparison of what the tea party folks do and what the left does. The president lied. He didn’t lie because of his race. He lied because he is a liar. He hangs with liars. There is not talent there. NONE.

The left has lost any capability for rational thought. Perhaps they might like to read some history...if they can indeed read considering the joke of an education which the majority of them appear to have received.


5 posted on 09/16/2009 10:01:14 AM PDT by Da Coyote
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To: Buck W.; Liz
“As a liberal, I must ask: Why can’t liberals who support Obama make an intelligent argument without accusing those who disagree with us of racism, and sideswiping other liberals who, like me, when I heard Obama’s speech, reflexively agreed with Wilson’s sentiment - to wit, “Mr. President, you lie!”? “

OMG - a thinking liberal - and a non-totalitarian one... Thank God.

6 posted on 09/16/2009 10:01:29 AM PDT by GOPJ (ObamaCare - a scam that would make Madoff blush...)
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To: nickcarraway

“The promises he listed simply did not add up. I said to myself - not being on the floor of Congress at the time - “you lie.” That heretical thought did not make me a “racist.” Nor did the expression of the idea make Joe Wilson a “racist.” “

Sanity from the left. Are pigs flying outside my office?


7 posted on 09/16/2009 10:02:59 AM PDT by poobear
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To: nickcarraway
Those of you that think it's not racist to disagree with the president can sign a petition and donate to Joe Wilson HERE.
8 posted on 09/16/2009 10:04:42 AM PDT by Jaxter (Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum.)
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To: nickcarraway
Personally I am not suprised that a liberal is capable of thinking so clearly and correctly on this issue.

I realize that I am in a small minority on this website holding this heretical position.

Evidently everyone who disagrees with conservatism (however poorly defined) is an evil, amoral (or immoral) enemy that is completely incapable of rational thought.

Trying to work with some liberals on a case-by-case basis where we happen to agree is supposedly a fool's errand.

We conservatives are not like the Taliban so we will not demand that all our enemies be eliminated or relegated to some second class status. But somehow we are supposed to believe that any conversation with liberals is a total waste of time, and that they are all out to undermine our way of life. How anyone can hold those two positions simultaneously mystifies me, but it is evidently something that most Freepers are able to do.

Thanks for posting this.

9 posted on 09/16/2009 10:06:14 AM PDT by who_would_fardels_bear (These fragments I have shored against my ruins)
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To: milford421
"I’m sick of the “both sides are acting badly” argument"

Some confuse the righteous hatred of evil with the evil hatred of righteousness.


10 posted on 09/16/2009 10:06:14 AM PDT by I see my hands (_8(|)
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To: nickcarraway; Buck W.; milford421; GOPJ

“As a liberal, I must ask: Why can’t liberals who support Obama make an intelligent argument without accusing those who disagree with us of racism, and sideswiping other liberals who, like me, when I heard Obama’s speech, reflexively agreed with Wilson’s sentiment - to wit, “Mr. President, you lie!”?”

The answer is simple - THEY DON’T HAVE AN INTELLIGENT ARGUMENT!!


11 posted on 09/16/2009 10:07:05 AM PDT by aquila48
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To: nickcarraway

Michael Meyers is a superior person.


12 posted on 09/16/2009 10:11:02 AM PDT by utahagen
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To: nickcarraway
Yeah, he says some disagreeable things. But at least he's rational. You could have a reasoned conversation with him, and perhaps find common ground and reach the same conclusions—and be able to articulate and explain the reasons for those conclusions in a way that would convince other rational people.
13 posted on 09/16/2009 10:12:05 AM PDT by sourcery (Party like it's 1776!)
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To: nickcarraway
But Obama says he wants to encourage dialogue, so the racialists who back him do him no favor.

Um, note to Mr. Meyers: He's lying about that too. The radical racial slurs are exactly what Obama wants. He wants anything that will help him acquire power.

14 posted on 09/16/2009 10:12:57 AM PDT by Carry_Okie (Islam offers three choices: surrender, fight, or die.)
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To: aquila48

liberal/intelligent.

Oxymoron!


15 posted on 09/16/2009 10:13:06 AM PDT by milford421 (U.N. OUT OF U.S.)
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To: Da Coyote

Your right on with your post


16 posted on 09/16/2009 10:19:25 AM PDT by reefdiver (So how's that HOPE & CHANGE working out for ya ?)
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To: nickcarraway
People who are afraid to be critical of the President because he's black are guilt-ridden closet racists.

I believe in a color blind standard - I can't stand most liberals - whatever their color. And I like most conservatives - whatever their color.

17 posted on 09/16/2009 10:21:52 AM PDT by GOPJ (ObamaCare - a scam that would make Madoff blush...)
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To: aquila48
The answer is simple - THEY DON’T HAVE AN INTELLIGENT ARGUMENT!!

And the thuggy "race card" is easier.

In Iran the thugs use the "Allah card" - if you disagree with one of the goons running Iran - they say you're disagreeing with Allah.

Odd how evil people are cut from the same cloth.

18 posted on 09/16/2009 10:36:24 AM PDT by GOPJ (ObamaCare - a scam that would make Madoff blush...)
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To: nickcarraway
I propose that we do everything that we can to bury this term in the dungheap from where it was spawned. I propose that we make the word "racist" or "racism" as off-limits as liberals and blacks have made the "N word".

Beginning by refusing to use the word itself, in polite company, and instead calling it "the R word", and treating it as offensive as it is...

And when the talking heads on TV start referring to it as "the R word", we will know that we've suceeded.

19 posted on 09/16/2009 10:38:45 AM PDT by Kenton
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To: nickcarraway
Our American President does not merit the protections or courtesies and bows accorded a king.

Amen.

20 posted on 09/16/2009 10:40:19 AM PDT by Smogger
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To: Da Coyote
Sorry, I’m not accepting ANY comparison of what the tea party folks do and what the left does.

I can, in particular, the "Hitler" stuff. I thought it was over the top when the Left did it, I think the same now when our side does it. Obama is bad enough, we needn't bring up Hitler, thats just silly. I fully support the "Socialist" tag though. Thats actually for worse because it is true.

21 posted on 09/16/2009 10:41:39 AM PDT by Paradox (ObamaCare = Logan's Run ; There is no Sanctuary!)
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To: nickcarraway
he tea party crowd protests with signs that depict President Obama as Hitler,

Outright lie here. One Hitler sign is hardly a trend. The tea party members protested with home made signs that showed imagination and intelligence in 99.99% of the cases and this guy picks out the lone Hitler sign to characterize the tea parties.

22 posted on 09/16/2009 10:46:22 AM PDT by calex59 (FUBO, we want our constitution back and we intend to get it!)
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To: utahagen
Michael Meyers is a superior person.

He sure is:


23 posted on 09/16/2009 10:49:13 AM PDT by Clemenza (Remember our Korean War Veterans)
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To: Paradox

Read my comment #22, and if you think in that the right wing protesters in any way compare to the left you have a problem. There are always going to be the idiots and some of the idiots are liberals trying to make us look bad.


24 posted on 09/16/2009 10:53:00 AM PDT by calex59 (FUBO, we want our constitution back and we intend to get it!)
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To: who_would_fardels_bear
But somehow we are supposed to believe that any conversation with liberals is a total waste of time

Not every liberal but more than usual these days due to the fact that the FAR left is now in power...the ones who brought us Malcolm X adorers and Bill Ayers sycophants. The ones who believe that it's normal for gays to marry, for Gov't to make all health decisions, for taxes to be raised astronomically because people want to perpetrate myths instead of science about the environment.

By way of contrast, most of the people demonstrating against Zero are hold normal views. You know, don't kill or experiment on babies, leave health choices to individuals, and don't treat nuclear arms rogues like equal partners. These are NOT radical views.

There's the difference.

25 posted on 09/16/2009 11:02:29 AM PDT by what's up
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To: nickcarraway

>>Someone once asked, “Can’t we all just get along?”<<

No, that wasn’t just “someone,” it was the renowned humanitarian and philosopher Rodney King. Leave it to a lefty to draw from criminals for their material.


26 posted on 09/16/2009 11:08:41 AM PDT by Tar and Feathers
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To: calex59
Read my comment #22, and if you think in that the right wing protesters in any way compare to the left you have a problem. There are always going to be the idiots and some of the idiots are liberals trying to make us look bad.

Fair enough, I have just hated the "Hitler" argument for a long time.

I know there are liberals trying to make us look bad as well, I got one purged from FreeRepublic myself!

27 posted on 09/16/2009 11:25:07 AM PDT by Paradox (ObamaCare = Logan's Run ; There is no Sanctuary!)
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To: nickcarraway

Wow, this is a rarity these days. Mr. Meyers seems like a liberal that hasn’t drunk all the kool-aid, a man that one might disagree with on issues be glad to invite to a cookout and a beer. He writes more like a cold-war Democrat of the type I remember from my childhood than the usual rad-lib, almost bolshie, Obama worshipers that seem to dominate the media and the news for the past umpteen years.


28 posted on 09/16/2009 11:49:13 AM PDT by Convert from ECUSA (It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies - C.S. Lewis)
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To: Paradox

“I have just hated the “Hitler” argument for a long time.” Me too. But iTis uncanny though. “Narcissists project a grandiose but false image of themselves. Jim Jones, the charismatic leader of People’s Temple, the man who led over 900 of his followers to cheerfully commit mass suicide and even murder their own children was also a narcissist. David Koresh, Charles Manson, Joseph Koni, Shoko Asahara, Stalin, Saddam, Mao, Kim Jong Ill and Adolph Hitler are a few examples of narcissists of our time.”
http://www.faithfreedom.org/obama.html


29 posted on 09/16/2009 12:06:12 PM PDT by anglian
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To: nickcarraway
Sorry, Democrats, Racism Isn't Everywhere (Opinion of a 'Liberal')

Well. The truth is the truth, and it applies to everybody, no matter how you slice it.

30 posted on 09/16/2009 12:17:35 PM PDT by pray4liberty
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To: nickcarraway

Carter's amazing genius strikes again. It's obvious that Jimmy Carter lost to Ronald Reagan in a landslide because the Reagan voters did not want an African American as president. It's obvious that the militia movement and extremists who despised Bill Clinton as president in the 1990s were upset about having "the first black president" in the White House, hence, their maneuvers in the backwoods clad in fatigues. It's obvious that conservatives who criticized Hillary Clinton's "It Takes a Village" version of Alinskyite socialism did so because of her skin color. And, of course, the Bush forces stole the elections from Gore and Kerry because of racial fears about their prowess on the basketball court and their likely secret Muslim backgrounds. But the Carter-Obama Parallels do not end there...


31 posted on 09/16/2009 1:11:47 PM PDT by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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To: GOPJ
OMG - a thinking liberal - and a non-totalitarian one... Thank God.

Methinks that this liberal is on the way to becoming a conservative. One can not be intellectually honest and remain a liberal for long.

32 posted on 09/16/2009 1:27:25 PM PDT by usurper (Spelling or grammatical errors in this post can be attributed to the LA City School System)
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To: nickcarraway

How easily they forget it was DUmocrats throwing oreos at Micheal Steel, it was DUmocrats who slandered black republicans such as Alan Keyes, Clarence Thomas, Condi Rice and Gollum Powell (untill he showed his true colors and jumped on the Obamatron express).

Most DUmocrats weren’t voting for DUh-bama because he was black...they voted for him for the empty promises of “free” gimmies:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P36x8rTb3jI

The Democrat party has always been the party of slavery, sedition, subversion, socialism and surrender.


33 posted on 09/16/2009 1:40:25 PM PDT by RasterMaster (The only way to open a LIEberal mind is with a brick!)
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To: usurper
Methinks that this liberal is on the way to becoming a conservative. One can not be intellectually honest and remain a liberal for long.

I think that's how we got Dennis Miller too - too much intellectual honesty...

34 posted on 09/16/2009 3:04:21 PM PDT by GOPJ (If(ACORN)video was about a Christian group, it'd be a major story in every newsroom.-MikeAllenMSNBC)
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To: nickcarraway
A rational lib bump
35 posted on 09/16/2009 4:59:51 PM PDT by tophat9000 (Obama plans to fix America like he fixed his dog)
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bump


36 posted on 09/16/2009 7:36:16 PM PDT by listenhillary (A "cult of personality" arises when a leader uses mass media creating idealized/heroic public image)
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To: listenhillary

bump


37 posted on 09/16/2009 7:52:10 PM PDT by listenhillary (A "cult of personality" arises when a leader uses mass media creating idealized/heroic public image)
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