• DOUBLETAKE 08: “Taking a second look at race and racism in the 2008 presidential elections”

  • Campaign Events

    Sat, October 25th, 3-6:30pm
    The Ballot Box and Beyond
    UCLA Labor Center
    675 S Park View St [map it]
    Los Angeles, CA 90057

DoubleSpeak Dictionary #4

Eugene Robinson at the Washington Post delivers this edition of our DoubleSpeak Dictionary… a critical look at the use of the term “uppity” to describe Barack Obama.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, it finally happened: A Republican congressman has come right out and called Barack Obama “uppity.”

Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-Ga.), often described as one of the most conservative members of Congress (which is saying something), used that racially loaded term to describe Obama in a conversation today outside the House chamber with a reporter from The Hill. As you can see in The Post’s news coverage, the reporter gave Westmoreland a chance to take it back. Bless him, he didn’t.

I love it when everybody’s cards are on the table.

A spokesman for the congressman said later that his boss didn’t realize that term has long been used to describe African Americans who don’t know their place. If so, he is the only born-and-bred Southerner alive who is so oblivious…..

The notion that Obama is somehow reaching beyond his station has been a subtext of the attacks on his eloquence, his academic resume, his ambition — qualities that are usually prized in a leader but that are somehow twisted by Obama’s opponents into negatives. It is within even Lynn Westmoreland’s limited grasp to understand that “uppity” means one thing: Who does this black guy think he is to run for president? If Republicans are going to ask that question, they shouldn’t be allowed to do it through hints and nudges. Just do like Lynn Westmoreland and put it in plain English.

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: