Sun Jan 29, 2012, 07:28 AM
bigtree (50,889 posts)
Dog-Whistling Republicans' Racist Legacy
Last edited Sun Jan 29, 2012, 11:43 AM - Edit history (1)
WILL the republican candidates' appeals to racism spark a resurgence of discriminatory acts? Or, is it a case where their over-the-top rhetoric is generating enough of a resistance among Americans that folks who emulate them are being marginalized and outcast?
I tend to believe it's the former, that these republican candidates' appeals to racism and their attacks on the ethnicity of folks in America is emboldening like-minded individuals to identify their own bias with an apparently legitimized and accepted discriminatory dialog coming from these political leaders.
Although there has certainly been a swift and prominent response to such attacks -- with the speed of our media and the presence of so many enlightened individuals committed to confronting each and every instance they can manage -- there is still a dynamic where these bigoted appeals to racism from the candidates persist as long as these public figures are able to maintain their public positions and platforms.
Certainly, Mr. Gingrich's statements about President Obama being a 'food stamp president' and suggesting poor blacks take restroom jobs to teach them the importance of work -- as well as the comments from Mr. Santorum that he doesn't "want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money” -- are enough for their fellow candidate, Mr. Romney to condemn. Romney, however, was content to echo their attacks with his own dog-whistle about the President wanting an 'entitlement' society.
We're not going to see any significant retreat by these republicans from their cynical appeals to their voters' bigotry, because that would, apparently cost them much of the support they've cultivated with those racist appeals, so far.
In fact, the camps of Romney and Gingrich are doubling down on their divisive appeal this week by turning to bigoted surrogates to toot on their dog-whistles for them. Romney chose the well-known bigot, Jon Voight, to stump with him on the campaign trail this week.
Voight, who once called President Obama a 'false prophet', wasted no time at all in proclaiming from Romney's prepared platform that "President Obama decided to follow his father’s footsteps and take us to socialism.” A lively joke session followed his racist appeal.
Gingrich welcomed the bigoted tongue of Sarah Palin this week as she denounced the candidate's critics as, "nothing short of Stalin-esque."
These republican candidates are stepping up their cultivation of these divisive influences and the types of supporters their bigoted and racist appeals attract in order to win votes and to win an election. That sends a powerful signal to their constituency that theirs is an acceptable standard of discourse which, presumably, should be emulated to effect the defeat of our Democratic president.
That attitude and acceptability resonates among the prejudiced faster than it can be washed away by critics and defenders of more respectful dialogue. It will take years to tamp down the hateful legacy of this election season's divisive appeals. It will take decades to wash it away if any one of these republican candidates manage to achieve the presidency.
1 replies, 783 views
Dog-Whistling Republicans' Racist Legacy (Original post)
Response to bigtree (Original post)
Sun Jan 29, 2012, 11:41 AM
bigtree (50,889 posts)
1. this is a conversation that few will share with me
Last edited Sun Jan 29, 2012, 01:14 PM - Edit history (1)
. . . but it's one that I feel personally affected by.
We never seem to resolve these issues, we just move on. Moving on . . .