As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Carter And Race

In some respects, the former President is the perfect person to make this argument. He's done with politics and has nothing to lose. Anyway he's already hated by the right, so what more can they do to him?

"I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a black man, that he's African-American," Carter told "NBC Nightly News." "I live in the South, and I've seen the South come a long way, and I've seen the rest of the country that shares the South's attitude toward minority groups at that time, particularly African-Americans."

"That racism inclination still exists, and I think it's bubbled up to the surface because of belief among many white people -- not just in the South but around the country -- that African-Americans are not qualified to lead this great country. It's an abominable circumstance, and it grieves me and concerns me very deeply," Carter said.

The wingnuts are EXTREMELY sensitive to this. Because Carter's coming close to cracking the code here. It's really as much about class as race - corporate-dominated Republicans want the lower classes to fight amongst themselves while they steal the Treasury. But because of our particular history, that manifests itself as a racial issue, because of the disproportionate amount of minorities at the low end of the income scale. And this goes double for undocumented immigrants, which manifests itself as anyone of Hispanic origin.

Digby has more on this. Our lack of what she calls "social insurance" does lead to this animosity toward racial minorities who get "something for nothing." The fact that we're seeing similar animosity play itself out in Europe with regard to animosity toward Muslim immigrants, even while they've had well-designed social safety nets, tells me that this is something of a universal, tribal concept ingrained in our lizard brains, and unwinding it is nearly impossible, at least for some section of the population.

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