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Conason begins: "Among the most revealing aspects of life during the Obama presidency is the panoply of responses to a black family in the White House. What made so many of us proud of our country on January 20, 2009, has increasingly provoked expressions of hatred from the far right. That is troubling, but not nearly as troubling as the behavior of conservatives who excuse, embolden or simply pretend to ignore the bigots surrounding them."

Scenes from a Tea Party rally, Capitol Hill, 03/16/10. (photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Scenes from a Tea Party rally, Capitol Hill, 03/16/10. (photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) your social media marketing partner


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0 # Guest 2010-08-14 12:52
My Opinion:
What about the ''TROUBLING BEHAVIOR'' of GLOBAL CORPORATISTS/CO RPORATIONS which own mass amounts of Media and massively fund the Republican Party and hence, the intolerant CONservatives within that Party into power because the true work and mutual goal of Global Corporations and the Republican Party is to Get what Corporations want from Us and what was once upon a time- OUR GOVERNMENT?
CONservatives and the Global Corporate World supports the Republicans and 'embraces' these 'intolerant whakos' because of pure greed on their part regardless of social consequences.
We might consider that since Corporations are considered 'Persons' under our laws and the Conservative leaning Supreme Court recently gave Global Corporate 'Persons' the right to use their wealth and power to influence OUR Elections all they want, that perhaps these 'Persons' are also Racists... Yes..? No..?
Does a Global Corporate 'Person' consider itself to be an American Person?
+20 # Guest 2010-08-14 13:12
Thanks Mr. Conason, for telling it like it is. We live increasingly in a hate-filled sewer, being filled daily by right-wing vitriol. We need to keep saying "racist", when they say and do racist things. We need to say "lie" when they lie. We need to say "crazed" whenever Glenn Beck opens his mouth.
+5 # willymack 2010-08-14 16:16
Is this a resurgence of racist bigotry or the last gasp of the Lester Maddox and George Wallace crowd?

We still have quite a few oldsters around, who yearn for the days of Ozzie & Harriet, but they're fading fast and most of the younger generation don't seem to be buying their nonsense.
Time will tell.
0 # Guest 2010-08-27 23:11
The Bible states, "For the love of money is the root of all evil." Beck has sold his soul to the devil for fame and fortune. His behavior is totally like a carnival act, very entertaining but also cheaply done.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-14 13:49
..purely for the purpose of political gain.

Unfortunately it is difficult to determine who, if anyone is taking the high road here. A couple of weeks back:

Mary Frances Berry, former Chair of the US Commission on Civil Rights, currently Professor of American Social Thought and History, U. Penn. Her words - let's be this way:

"Tainting the tea party movement with the charge of racism is proving to be an effective strategy for Democrats. There is no evidence that tea party adherents are any more racist than other Republicans, and indeed many other Americans. But getting them to spend their time purging their ranks and having candidates distance themselves should help Democrats win in November. Having one's opponent rebut charges of racism is far better than discussing joblessness."

" effective strategy for Democrats."

+14 # Guest 2010-08-14 13:59
Thank you for again pointing out that in fact there are some decent white people out there who find the words and actions of the ring-wing to be repellent and potentially leading to unnecessary serious confrontation.. .any fair minded person can see the words of Laura Ingram and Glen Beck are designed to appeal to the racists element and their hateful rhetoric will have negative personal consequences whether they believe it or not
-14 # Guest 2010-08-14 16:52
With due respect.. as odd as Glenn Beck is; I don't think there is a racist bone in his body. In other words, I do not believe the fact that Martin Luther King is one of his heroes, and that he has done numerous spots celebrating the life, message and accomplishments of King, was simply patsy, in any sense of the word.

I would note... that they do see trickle down as a benefit for all. But as with all things, balance is the name of anything civil. Now, that is a damn good conversation and the conversation should be civil. Beck speaks out against racism often and strongly. Someone should prove him wrong before smearing.
-4 # Guest 2010-08-14 22:18
The proof is in his performances. When he says that Obama has a hate for white people, a statement that is based only in- what, exactly? his own beyond-the-pale sensibilities (or is this only rodeo clown/entertain er talk?) are pretty apparent. He's rather inoffensive in appearance, and I suppose apart from the occasional crying jag or hissy fit, comes off as kinda nice. Ultimately his playing-for-the -cameras paranoia gives him away. this is the age of Youtube, Tivo; plenty of proof to peruse, if you're willing.
-3 # Guest 2010-08-15 06:06
Well of course many whites admired Dr. King because he initially took a non-violent, and therefore harmless approach which could be ignored. Dr. King was a preacher who worshiped a white image of Christ so there was no way he would ever promote true equality among the races; at least while he still focused on the non-violent approach. Of course what history doesn't want to talk about is that eventually he stepped away from a passive approach and that is when he was deemed "dangerous" because people realized that he was in fact serious.
+13 # Guest 2010-08-14 14:24
It's mostly liberals who are disappointed and shocked that so much racism remains after Mr. Obama became president. They are and have been in denial for many years about America's Achille's heel of bigotry. Conservatives, on the other hand, are more realistic about the mindset that they and their followers have pursued for generations and note that overt racism is shrinking while the more subtle forms continue unabated. Actually, the entire country needs a good dose of shock therapy to wipe this disease out of the collective brain.
+6 # Guest 2010-08-14 19:13
You must not be reading the same right wing junk that I am reading: it claims that racism is all in liberals minds and that the conservatives are not bigoted. I am so tired of conservative friends (actually ex-friends, sadly) sending me junk about President Obama being a Kenyan, etc.
+7 # Guest 2010-08-14 14:46
Thank you Mr. Canosan for this thought provoking article. No truer words have been spoken about the racism that is all over this country ever since Mr. Obama took office. The sad part is that the racism has always been here, now it seems, that it is okay to be a racist with a Black president. Sad very sad, but this what America is all about, unfortunately. Keep these coming, we can only hope that with constant criticism when someone lies or has racist comments to make, we have to call them every time.
+8 # Guest 2010-08-14 15:06
And,like ol' man river, prejudice just keeps rollin' along.
+9 # Guest 2010-08-14 15:34
Thanks for pointing this out. We've seen this show before.

Those who perpetrate bigotry are the first to deny its existence.

Yet, they would be the first to complain if it were happening to them.
+19 # Guest 2010-08-14 15:58
Obama's race is irrelevant. He has the same problem as GWB. He's pro-war, pro-bankster, pro-elite-rulin g-class. He does the bidding of the old time robber baron and banking families and does so openly with arrogance. He's overseen more of the nation's wealth being sucked into the hands of these people than any other previous president, even exceeding GWB. Obama's rule like those before him is a political spoils game where those who win at politics get everything and those who lose or don't play have their wealth taken from them.

Of course the ruling class needs a way to demonize those who object to the political system stealing their wealth and destroying the ability to create wealth, so we get the cries of racism. With GWB those who objected were 'anti-american' . It's a distraction, a game.

Remember when Ds were going to end the spying, wars, etc? Renewed and expanded once they got power. It's not D vs. R. It's the ruling class vs. everyone else.
-11 # Guest 2010-08-14 16:35
Basically, Conason hates everybody.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-14 21:58
say what?
+7 # Guest 2010-08-14 16:43
Ingram, Beck, Palin, Limbaugh, Michelle Bachman, Ann Coulter and a number of rabid radio talk show hosts are racist abominations, and they are doing their best to destroy our country, by encouraging the latent racism THAT HAS ALWAYS BEEN HERE.

There are obviously a lot of racists, who previously were somewhat quiet, because they realized it was "politically incorrect". Now the creeps are pushing, pushing, pushing until somebody loses it and tries to attack the president.

Sadly there are so many desperate people, who have lost jobs, homes, basically their lives. One of them could easily feel, that he has nothing to loose, he is being TOLD that the PRESIDENT IS AT FAULT, he is illegitimate. The creeps are counting on something like that. I am sure that is their aim.

+11 # Guest 2010-08-14 16:46
It has always been my observation while living in the South (most of my adult life), is that the common complaint of any Southern man to the concept of "political Correctness" is shorthand for "I can't say the word 'nigger' anymore in mixed company".

The racism that exists in America today is hidden behind the surface by mere micrometers. What else explains the incredible boom in gun sales in the middle of a recession?

There are people not only waiting, but HOPING for a race war to break out in this country. They've been prepared for years, and our elected President is only the catalyst for the renewed energy from the racists.

In closing, I'd like to leave my favorite quote:
"Not all Republicans are racist, but EVERY racist is a Republican"!
-4 # Guest 2010-08-14 19:14
+2 # Guest 2010-08-15 05:32
Quoting Mac Daddy:

my favorite quote:
"Not all Republicans are racist, but EVERY racist is a Republican"!

Good to see that YOU don't prejudge people!
+4 # Guest 2010-08-14 18:11
History is rhyming. When we see (1) racists, homophobes, misogynists, anti-Muslims, etc., (2) those who support them financially and organizationall y, though not wanting to do the dirty work, and (3) the huge majority who just look the other way, we're living in a parallel universe to:

(1) the Nazis
(2) the Nazi sympathizers
(3) the "Good Germans"

The most effective "sympathizers" today are the huge corporations who can fund movements that help us move further into a fragmented government that serves the whims of corporations.

It's not at all clear (to me anyway) what we can realistically do to stop it.
+4 # Guest 2010-08-14 18:37
Having spent the better part of 18 months working my every free minute to make certain Obama was elected President, I can tell you first hand that the racists were coming out of the woodwork the moment they saw the color of Obama's skin. They did not even need to HEAR a word he said. In some cases, just seeing the word OBAMA on my t-shirt would set them off a shaking, and spitting and sputtering while they tried to make some nasty and frequently a racist comment. I thought American was mostly beyond it's racist past. Sadly, I was wrong and this article captures it spot on.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-14 20:59
Curtis, your story reminds me that I heard a radio interview of an Obama volunteer who had been called a n-lover by someone she encountered on the street in the course of her volunteer work. Racism is still alive in the US, one has only to look at the breakdown of the prison population by race to know that.
+3 # Guest 2010-08-14 20:54
It is truly sad that the same criticisms that were appropriately leveled against the policies of Clinton are now labeled as racist because they are leveled at a black (half white) president. It is certainly more convenient to level the charge of racism then it is to address the charges that his economic policies are even worse than Bush's (a hard thing to do), that his foreign policy is even worse than Bush's (again, nearly impossible to believe), and that he has taken a horrible economic crisis and has made it worse by doing exactly the same things FDR did during the first Depression (which also made that one drag out for over a decade). But then it is much easier to just cry racism.

Hey, I hated Bush and I hate Obama not for who they are, but for what they did and are doing to this country. Color has nothing to do with it, but that reality is too hard for some to face.
-2 # Guest 2010-08-14 22:28
Obama's chosen the 'safer' path of not rocking the boat, and keeping the course, more or less, that bush and company established, with some exceptions. Certainly, kissing the ass of the right hasn't really fared well for him. Plenty to criticize. But damn if the racism isn't there as well, rearing it's head every chance it can. That's America.
+5 # Guest 2010-08-14 21:20
Conason, crying "Racism! Racism!" is the last resort of scoundrels nowadays. Fight ideas with ideas, not crying "Racist! Racist!" -- it's so last century, man.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-14 23:27
very nice assessment mr. conasan. i'm in agreement. i'd like to say to "B" and "Mr. Liberty" that both your comments are such oversimplificat ions. i know it's important to be level-headed and even-minded about things so that one does not become jaded or narrow. however, the overt and latent racism has been an intricate part of the fabric of this country since it's inception. it is always there and there are always those who are hiding in the weeds waiting for a signal to show themselves. ever since "your" great president reagan there's been a growing climate and culture that's signaled it's alright to show disdain for skin color that isn't white. like it or not, admit it or not, skin color is what it always comes down to. if these were prosperous times whites folks who have hardly anything to complain about. in prosperous times people of color in this country still have a tough time but no one cares. when times are tough and whites have to suffer with people of color, we get the blame.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-16 15:36
You are right nativetender. I think racism is a remnant of colonial times. Whites were a minority and frankly scared of people with darker skin color. They "painted" them as stupid and less than moral, did not allow them to be educated, for they knew that if the "natives" were educated and given rights, whites would be out of power.

It was also MANY YEARS before blacks and other minorities were depicted on TV and in movies as other than criminals, brutes and buffoones.
-1 # Guest 2010-08-14 23:37
I am putting together a book on Black Racism in the Forest Service and the USDA.

I am the victim of black racists who are paid a lot of money ( $140,000 / year ) at that agency. The book will explain why there are so many black racists and that they feel free to be racists.
+2 # Windy126 2010-08-15 00:02
Racism is alive and well in this country. I hear it all the time. I have been afraid since Obama was nominated that there has been a movement out there that is just waiting to assassinate him. I have no idea what they think they will accomplish except to make a martyr and hero out of him to the entire world. And split this country into pieces that will never be put back together again. I am so very Thankful that I am on the down hill side of life. I feel so very sorry for my grandchildren for what they will have to face. It is sad because not one of them has a prejudiced bone in their body.
+2 # Guest 2010-08-15 07:15
Conason you are my rock! Keep talking and writing and thinking! You point out the provocative Truth in America.
+2 # Guest 2010-08-15 09:31
I am a white woman who was raised by racist parents. My uncle, in southern W.Va., had many guns under his bed, he said he was just waiting for the (blacks) to rise. God blessed me with keen sight, even as a child, and I saw through this hateful racism. I do think, however, that each new generation is less bigoted, more open to those who are different. My parents' generation is nearly gone, and this society will be the better for their passing, and also when mine passes away, because it also has much racism. We are an evolving species, and we will either evolve or we will not survive. Those who hold us back, and fight change, are working for our destruction.
+4 # Guest 2010-08-15 11:48
Racism is alive and well but is likely disproportionat e based on age demographic. I live in a fairly "mixed" area- it is common (and sometimes a bit amusing for this middle aged man) to see the white kids hanging out with the blacks. Not because I think this is wrong-quite the opposite. But the white kids have mimicked the talk, dress, and behavior of the black kids. The apparent integration is obvious. However, their parents (or even more likely) the grandparents may not be as enthused with the new integration.

The elders do not accept the idea of an African-America n president. This is likley incomprehensibl e to many of them and ,thus, a monumental event causing the crazies of the right to dominate the national coversation. (Combined with a so-called"socia lized" take over of healthcare.)

A strong jobs program should have been the emphasis.Might have prevented some of the craziness.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-16 02:37
Is it possible that some whites dislike Obama, not because he is black, but because they don't like his policies or don't like something about his personality?
Is there an "if a then b" causation? i.e. "If you dislike Obama then you are racist." Perhaps what has happened is that some whites had legitimate disagreements with Obama's campaign platform? Has anyone left that possibility open, or is it simply axiomatic that anyone and everyone who claims to disagree with Obama's campaign platform and his current administration disagrees because and ONLY because he is a racist?
0 # Guest 2010-08-16 15:06
dubious, of course that is the case, I am sure many simply disagree with Obama; but way too many are using disgusting racist slurs, placards and hate-speech.

Also Beck, Limbaugh, Palin and the rest of the hate-filled crew at Fox would not have such a big following if there was not a lot of racism in the country.
+1 # Guest 2010-08-16 03:04
The racist turn is not just about the far right: it is mainstream. The problem is always assuming some nutties out there are the culprits when in fact racism is American as pie. It is the default line- and the Republicans know they can milk the populace of their prejudice and animus against, especially, black folks. Indeed, the battle goes all the way to the Civil War, through the Reconstruction and its demise, as well as the civil rights/post-civ il rights eras. The republicans and their ilk (mainstream and otherwise, including liberals who simply are unaware of the banality of racism in the US and elsewhere
+1 # Guest 2010-08-16 10:31
This is tricky territory. There is no doubt that there is a great deal of overt & covert racism out there in the MSM & the marketplace (& now, apparently, in mainline churches, as well), but we mustn't let ourselves to be so hypersensitive that we disallow legitimate political criticism in words & cartoons. Think of all the cartoons of W, and, if you can remember, of FDR. Depicting a lanky black man with jug ears can be a perfectly valid cartoon of Obama. Depicting him as eating watermelon is obviously not.
-2 # Guest 2010-08-16 10:40
Thank God thee are no black racist or Democrat racist. All us Republicans have to be racist other wise why would we be disagreeing with the Obama polocies? It's simple we are racist. If you voted for Obama because he is black, You are a Racist. Simple as That..

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