Once again, Barack Obama has come under race-based attack, just as he predicted almost four weeks ago. Once again, it didn’t come from the Republicans, the RNC, or the John McCain campaign. Instead, it came from John McLaughlin. In discussing the Jesse Jackson Castrato Commentary, McLaughlin asked whether Obama was an “Oreo”:
The veteran Washington journalist was discussing the recent comments from the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who was caught last week by an open microphone on Fox News saying the Illinois senator is “talking down to black people” as he campaigns for the White House. Those remarks were largely seen in reference to Obama’s recent admonishment at a Chicago church of some black men who he said were not living up to their responsibilities as parents.
Referencing Jackson’s comments, McLaughlin said Obama “fits the stereotype blacks once labeled as an Oreo — a black on the outside, a white on the inside.”
“Does it frost Jackson, Jesse Jackson, that…an Oreo should be the beneficiary of the long civil rights struggle which Jesse Jackson spent his lifetime fighting for?” McLaughlin asked his panelists.
Interestingly, the only panelist to immediately call the characterization unfair was Peter Beinart, who argued instead that Obama was just a “practical politician”. Michelle Bernard of MS-NBC said later in the segment that if Obama was an Oreo, the entire post-Civil Rights generation would be Oreos as well. Eleanor Clift mostly laughed through the segment, while Pat Buchanan praised Obama for talking about tough issues without making excuses.
In order to make this clear to commenters, I do not believe that John McLaughlin was making a race-based attack on Obama; I’m using satire for a purpose. Since the Obama scare tactics in Florida, we’ve seen national stories arising from the injection of race in one manner or another — and none of it came from Republicans. They have all come from the Left or from the media. And I note that not one of the people on this show bothered to ask why McLaughlin chose that kind of provocative language.
Now just imagine if a televised roundtable of writers from National Review or the Wall Street Journal editorial board sat around discussing Obama’s purported Oreo problem. The Obama campaign would have fund-raising letters out the next day discussing it, and pundits around the nation would shriek about the racism on the Right. Thus far, the punditocracy has failed to notice that the only people obsessing about the issue are on the Left or the media.