Coming as it does almost a half-century since Martin Luther King's March on Washington, which drew a quarter-million people, I view this event as affirmative-action for racists. It's only fair the white supremacists have their turn. After all, according to wikipedia it's been over eighty years since the Ku Klux Klan had its big rally in D.C. (1925), and this year's gathering more than doubled their turnout of about 25,000.
All irony aside, it took a while, but I'm not the only one who's noticed the racist undertone to the anti-Obama movement. I can see folks getting caught up in the 'birther' conspiracy theory -- it re-enforces the preconception that he's 'not really one of us'. The 'death panels' idea simply shows how stupidly gullible people can be; no big surprise there. And as for the tea-baggers, both tax deadbeats and 'states rights'/secessionist sentiments have never been too far away from the surface.***
But that the same people just happen to converge in belief on all three entirely unrelated points shows something else is at work here: a deep, deep desire to de-legitimize the president. A rejection so visceral that I reluctantly have come to conclude that it's racist at heart: a desperate attempt to deny the reality of our now really, truly having a black president.
And now, just in the past day or so, I find I'm not the only one. Yesterday came the brief notice by Josh Marshall on talkingpointsmemo.com:
Then, of course, there was the article to which Marshall referred. I don't usually have much use for Maureen Dowd, who seems to think she's Dorothy Parker in the same way Geo. W. Bush thought he was Abraham Lincoln, but here I think she deserves credit for connecting the dots:
And then just tonight came news that our greatest ex-president has weighed in on the issue: I guess hitting 85 (as he will next month) means you can speak your mind. And remember that this is the man who ran against Lester Maddox, Georgia's would-be George Wallace: he knows racism when he sees it.
Now, given that people are printing up t-shirts to wear expressing solidarity with Congressman Wilson's failure to learn the manners most of us were taught in kindergarden, I'm wondering how long until the tea-bagger-birther-deather-racists start to put the white hoods on and proudly boast about their common ground with the KKK.
*[as if any of use really want to commemorate the unnecessary wars, warrantless wiretapping, torture, and rendition that followed in 9/11's wake]
**[surprisingly enough, the stations that ran Rev. Wright's "God damn America" clip over and over and over again a year ago don't seem to be running the footage from that recent Texas secessionists rally in which the (white) speakers in their cowboy hats shouted out "We hate America"]
***[tax deadbeats were the cause of the first time President Washington had to call up the U. S. Army after the Revolution, while 'states rights'/secession/nullification goes all the way back to Jefferson & Madison's plottings against Washington's and Adams' administrations.]