I’m paraphrasing, but only a little. Like I said last month, the closer we get to Election Day the more it’ll be suggested that to even contest this election is to evince racism.

Governor Paterson, delivering a speech today at the NAACP’s 99th annual convention at Cincinnati, suggested that the defeat of Senator Obama in the presidential election would be a victory for racism in America…

“Can America reject the crucible of race that has dictated and pervaded all of our history to embrace an African American man who has the right polices for the next decade in this country? Can America overlook its past practices that were so grave that in 1820 the great Scottish Whig, Sydney Smith, writing in the Edinburgh Review, said of America: ‘How can they protest the tyrannies of Europe when they torture and brutalize one-sixth of its population?’ How can America get past this and elect an African-American president of the United States?” Mr. Paterson said.

He continued: “Can America go past the crippling way that we’ve shot ourselves in the foot over and over, denying opportunity to people who are bright, to people who are qualified, to people who are able because they didn’t look like us, or they didn’t come from where we came from, or they are from a different gender, or they are from the African continent? Can America push that away and find new leadership? We’ll find out in the next few months what America can do.”

If McCain really respected black people, he’d drop out. Link via Gateway Pundit, who notes the flip side of Paterson claiming that an Obama loss proves racism — namely, NAACP President Julian Bond recently reminding America that an Obama win doesn’t disprove racism. I.e. no matter how much better things get, they’re still awfully bad, which is why well-intended cartoons circa 2008 can still be semi-seriously compared to racial terrorism of the 1920s. Even by a woman whose own husband was a victim of racial terrorism himself.