Wednesday, April 1, 2009

" . . . the Democrats have a tar baby on their hands."

Oh dear.

'Tar baby?'

That's a rather unfortunate turn of phrase, Rep. Ginny Foxx (R - NC):
" . . . [best?] way to describe to people. The Democrats have a tar baby on their hands, and they can't get away from it."


While folks can quibble over whether or not the term 'tar baby' is racist per se . . . I think it's problematic when directed at a black person, but is arguably less so when addressed toward legislation, an idea, or an approach to the problem, etc. . . . this sort of racially-tinged language is the kind of thing that a stupid and/or racist person can't help but spewing, thoughtlessly, maliciously, or otherwise.

A smarter and/or less racist politician, however - one who had two or more brain cells to rub together - and who wanted to avoid a potentially damaging uhhhhhhh . . . . firestorm - might try to refrain from introducing 'tar baby' imagery onto a debate over HR 1664 on Executive Compensation, especially at a time when our first black President, a Democrat, is less that 100 days into his newly minted Presidency.

To be clear, I wouldn't automatically suggest that Rep. Ginny Foxx (R - NC) is racist, although others might. No, I wouldn't suggest that Ginny Foxx is racist automatically, although my girlfriend Jasmine, my trusted resource on these matters, immediately cringed at the term, and said something to the effect of "hell yeah 'tar baby' is racist." Because the context isn't all there on YouTube, and because the comment occurred in a discussion about TARP, not about a person or about Barack Obama, and because it's quite possible that Representative Ginny Foxx (R-NC) is just stupid, and not actively racist, I'm quite comfortable saying that her comments today were not racist per se.

No folks. Ginny Foxx's comment wasn't necessarily racist . . . just really stupid. These are the sort of things that people who try think before they speak when it comes to . . . you know . . . speechifying on the floor of the Peoples' House of Congress, tend to avoid. But I wouldn't assume that the pasty ol' windbag known as Representative Virgina "Ginny" Foxx, Republican of North Carolina's 5th District, necessarily "thinks" before she speaks.

Yet again, the fine line between stupidity, and sheer racism, is grayed to a fine shade of fuzzy by our conservative Southern friends.

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