Spiegel Columnist: Sarah Palin is a Witless Racist
Article after article today denouncing Sarah Palin and John McCain, but especially Sarah Palin, for “injecting race” into the campaign.
By which they invariably mean: bringing up Barack Obama’s troubling long-term associations with hardcore radicals of one type or another.
Germany’s Spiegel Online gets into the act too with a venomous article by former TIME reporter Peter Ross Range: The Lone Ranger: Is Sarah Palin Playing with Fire?
In her witless way, Sarah Palin has re-injected race into the presidential campaign at just the time when it seemed to be sliding into insignificance. After all, you can hardly attach a racial narrative to the global financial crisis. Furthermore, polls have been suggesting a surprisingly high degree of acceptance by whites of a black in the White House.
Some commentators think “brownness” (immigrants) has replaced blackness as the new racial scarecrow in American politics. I think it is also true that as people have gotten used to Obama, they increasingly see not a black man, but a post-racial person (white and black, by birth) who calmly and coolly embodies the swirling ethnic mix that is modern America.
But Palin, with plenty of abetment from McCain, has gotten it going again with the theme that Obama “is not a man who sees America like you and I see America.” She’s selling Obama not as the black, but as the other. This obviously can appeal to racial fears and antagonisms.