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"Cynical", Racist, or Both?

By Suzi LeVeaux - Posted on 02 August 2008

Barack has said that he doesn't think that McCain is racist, but is cynical.

In reading at Diversity Inc, I found a comment that led me to some further research and investigation, and I found out something about McCain that surprised me, to say the least. Maybe his pandering to the far right isn't such a new thing after all. McCain actively supported George Wallce, Jr. in an election. I once said that I thought McCain was a maverick just because he liked the "bad boy" reputation. This may be more true than I suspected. Here are two of many links that back up the idea that he may be more racist than he cares to admit, or at least takes some biggoted stances, either because he believes in them, or to pander to the hard right. Judge for yourselves. ( I apologize for the links being in cut and paste form, but I haven't yet figured out how to link using the new server.)

Let's not forget he voted against having the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday (ofcourse he now says it was a mistake-but that's pretty major in my mind, even if it were many years ago) It's hard to say. I just took a course called "Race Matters" and most non-minorities are "unaware racists" in many ways (although it's not something most are willing to explore internally.)
The second link, (the first one at the end of the post), starts off talking about that vote, Izzy. The article tracks a not-so-pretty picture where McCain and race relations are concerned.
Suzi, Senator McCain gave a speech on April 4, 2008, the 40th anniversary of the MLK assassination, in Memphis. There he did apologize for voting against the holiday, and he said "I was wrong." He was not the only senator or representative who voted against the King holiday. Most said they believed it would be too expensive, since federal agencies, and businesses such as banks who are FDIC insured, would have the day off with pay. I for one, would not want to make that accusation against Sen. McCain. It is very hard to know exactly what is in a person's mind.
You're right wc, we don't know what is in anyone's mind or heart. Also, even though I do appreciate his apology about the MLK holiday, I would have appreciated it more had it been made before he was a POTUS candidate. But that aside, this is what bothers me the most, in case you didn't read the links. It seems that McCain is willing to do anything, maybe even if it goes against his own beliefs, to win. To me, that equates to selling his soul.
McCain is not racist. No matter what campaign antics McCain uses, when we step into the voting booth our more immediate problems -- especially economic ones will be on our minds. A vote for McCain is a vote for Bush's belligerent foreign policy which led to the unjustified and unending Iraq War that has killed more than 4,000 U.S. military personnel. McCain policies will add to the 600 billion national debt, and he will continue the wrecking ball Bush economic policies that are destroying the middle class, causing jobs loss, pushing homeowners into foreclosure and endangering the future of our offspring for decades to come. If the people vote like they did the last two times, McCain and his lobbyist will find a way to screw the rest of us.

And, McCain's Moses parting of the waters video -- when so many Americans are losing their jobs and homes, he answers it by showing us once AGAIN his morbid sense of humor. With this latest video he is telling us . . . . sure the economy is bad . . . laugh, suck it up, and stop whining. It's like what Obama said, he's cynical.

Yes, We Can

Lesley M.

I'm sure McCain isn't even feeling the slightest pinch in his financial life like the rest of us are, all thanks to this economic disaster he and his friends in the White House have gotten us into.  For some of us, it's not a pinch we are feeling either.  It's a complete strangle-hold.  McCain ensured his economic future when he married his  obnoxiously rich, barbie doll wife.  Sorry to sounds so rude about it, but facts are facts. 

Speaking of Cindy McCain... why in the world is she constantly following John McCain around at every single event, or location tour he is doing???  Why does she, or McCain's campaign people, feel it is necessary???  Her presence is just not necessary everywhere the man goes.  I mean really, she looks like a puppy following him around not wanting to be left out of the spotlight.  It really, REALLY annoys me.  We surely don't see Michelle following Barack around every where he goes.  I think it's great for the candidates wives to be supportive of their husbands, but ... enough is enough.   From the way she is at EVERY single photo op... you would almost think she was the one running for office! 

I am SO voting for Obama!!!



i speculate she's following him around because she doesn't trust him

"McCain is not racist. No matter what campaign antics McCain uses, when we step into the voting booth our more immediate problems -- especially economic ones will be on our minds."

I have to disagree.  Strongly.  McCain continues to state that he "hates gooks" and will always hate them. 

Yes, he was tortured by the VC.  But I know Jews who suffered in the Holocaust and don't refer to all Germans in a derogatory way.  

Likewise, if I suffered at the hands of Haitian rebels, that wouldn't give me a free pass to state they are "niggers" and I'll always hate them.  It also shows lacking character to say you will always hate a group of people. 

I won't vote for a racist or someone who cultivates hate.  I respect his service to the US, but it is both the unfortunate torture and the way he responded to it that make him too unstable for POTUS.   


McCain Deathwatch, July 10 '08:  McCain presently has a (partially complimentary) 25% chance of winning the election.

I agree with you, Sarg. No one makes comments like that without meaning it on some level. That's a dealbreaker for me.
I don't see why voting for or against MLK Day makes one a racist. This goes to the heart of what many Conservatives are ticked about. Being against Affirmative Action is not racist. Hating black people is racist. Not wanting to have sex with a person of the same sex is not homophobia. Not respecting people who do because that is their biological destiny is! A Federal holiday is a huge and costly undertaking. Shutting down the trillion dollar economy for a single day is a big strain. It's no small thing to create a holiday. Also, as a result of MLK Day, we lost the Lincoln and Washington's birthday days in February, getting President's Day instead. My own feeling is that we should have instead of MLK Day, we should have a day called American Heroes. On this day, people can celebrate the hero(es) of their choice: Sitting Bull, Davy Crockett, Bobby Jindahl, Roberto Clemente...all of the people who are special to this nation. Oh, and instead of January, make it in April during that long lull between February and Memorial Day!

jaba, if you had a brain, you would be dangerous!  Racism is about a lot more than hate, and is a lot more insidious and subtle.   At least hate is out there for the world to see, where today's racism is usually couched in not so obvious terms.

Short definition by Wiki: < Racism, by its simplest definition, is the belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race. >  When people are believed to be less, or we believe our race to be in any way inherently better than another race, no matter how minor the distinction, that is racism.

To put MLK in the same category as the others you mentined (Sitting Bull, Davy Crockett, Bobby Jindahl, Roberto Clemente) is, to me, a prime example of that veiled racism.  Can you tell me what these other men did to help bring an end to second class citizenship for millions of Americans?  To put a huge segment of our population on a path to partaking fully of their civil/human rights that we all take for granted? 

Just another American hero?  I don't think so!!!

Sorry, Suzi. I responded without reading those details about his vote (trying to get the kids into the bath & bed at a decent hour makes for a sloppy poster!) I guess I tend to give him the benefit of the doubt on race issues. However, if he were to become president, I would not expect him to address the serious racial/poverty/education issues anywhere close to the levels Obama would be committed. I do think anything he says in those areas is simply pandering and he would just follow the path we've been on throughout his presidency with very little getting done. It frightens me to even discuss this McCain presidency possibility. I don't think he's a bad person (although I have my moments of coming close these days) but he would be a bad president and we just should not have to deal with 4 more years of the same.
No apologies needed, Izzy. I think we have all taken the gist of a post and responded, without reading all of the links. I know I have. ;-) There is something about McCain now that makes me very uneasy. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I will. I think it has a lot to do with his being all about war, and willing to take whatever stance he feels he needs to get elected on every other issue. A war monger that is willing to sell out is a scary thought........
Shannon Reeves. Off topic, but this guy was pimping McCain at the NAACP and Urban Leage speeches. Interesting spin:

A tough sell

"I'm a black Republican, and there's a difference between a black Republican and a Republican who is black," Reeves, a longtime civil rights activist, told Morial. "There are some (blacks) who chose to be in the party but do not want to associate with our community." Reeves is not one of them. And, he said, he is not an apologist for Republicans who anger black leaders. Shannon Reeves is the new point man in the GOP's efforts to increase its following among blacks, who have voted overwhelmingly for the Democratic candidate in every presidential election since 1964. More to the point, he's a black Republican unlike any the GOP has mustered to pitch the party of Abraham Lincoln — and Strom Thurmond — to black voters.

As soon as you stated that you're going off topic, there was no point in reading the post.  So I'll just steer things back to the subject and once more point out that McCain isn't POTUS material because he has character defects, to include his racist comments against Asians, and his continuing to state that he will always hate them.

Haters don't make good presidents.  


McCain Deathwatch, July 10 '08:  McCain presently has a (partially complimentary) 25% chance of winning the election.

I agree with Misty and Jabailo, McCain is not racist but his surrogates (Karl Rove and the spin doctors in the GOP war room) routinely inject racially incendiary jabs into McCain's talking points and ads. Sadly, McCain is so desperate to win that he won't stand his ground and honor his promise to focus on the issues. Sen. Obama's presidential response ('cynical') is a clear indication that he will not be goaded into a silly schoolyard fight. However, I do think that he needs to deputize his surrogates to respond to the daily attacks and lies because we will not win on the defensive.

You can't make this stuff up.

Using Britney Spears and Paris Hilton to jab at Obama for being just too much of a celebrity -- is being credited to Rove's surrogate Steve Schmidt, McCain's chief strategist that was brought into the campaign in early July. The same question, we might recall, was asked regarding Schwarzenegger, "who had never even been elected dog-catcher when he announced his goal to manage the seventh largest economy in the world" on the ''Tonight'' show with Jay Leno. Eight weeks later, Schmidt had the job, and his work helped elect Arnold. But didn't Schmidt -- whose spot asks whether voters can trust such a star to govern -- manage that successful effort to re-elect the world's biggest celebrity, the action hero governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger?

Yes, We Can

Poor Misty. She got lumped in with jabailo!

Hi, Blackrock. Jabailo is our resident McCain supporter troll. He's here to defend McCain to the very end.

I agree with you that McCain, once a maverick known for standing his own ground, can't even find the ground anymore. It's crazy.

I can agree that McCain probably isn't racist in the usual sense of the word. After all, he adopted a black child, and a real racist wouldn't do that, so I retract that insinuation. But let me put this another way. I'm white, and I in no way consider myself racist. The fact is, during the Civil Rights days, I was an activist in my own small way. So let me give a hypothetical situation, using myself as an example (remember that I live in the deep south):

Suppose I live in an all white subdivision, and a black family moves in. To me, they are just another new family on the street, so I stop by (with a cake) to introduce myself, and welcome them to the neighborhood. Not giving it another thought, I go on about my daily life. The rest of the neighbors have nothing to do with the newcomers. They are too politically correct to make a scene, or put their houses up for sale. (The south really has come farther than that.) But neither do they welcome the new family, or make them feel a part of the community. As time goes by, and the white families talk within their own homes about the new family, the kids overhear the conversations, and start parrotting their parents negative and veiled racist words among themselves as they play. My kids hear this talk, and even though they haven't heard this at home, they begin to say the same things, because their friend, little Johnny or Sue, said it was so. My kids, who had played happily and innocently with the new kids, no longer want to play with them, because none of the other kids are allowed to. If I would allow my children to believe and/or say these things, and repeat them to others, what would that say about me? If I allowed divisive, ugly things to be said by those I had some control over, would it not imply that I had no control over them, and that I was being silent to keep the old neighbors' friendship? Wouldn't I be selling out who I am in order to be "popular"? If I didn't have the intestinal fortitude to stop it, and say this is wrong and I won't allow it, haven't I sold my soul?

I'm sorry, but even though McCain may not personally be racist, the same principle applies to him. If he doesn't stand up and put a stop to the use of the "southern strategy", he has sold his soul for votes and popularity. To me, that's just wrong.

Suzi, I have news for you...Bridget McCain ISN'T Black, she's from Bangladesh.  I think many get this confused when they see her.  My dad thought the same thing, but I had to explain to him that many people don't realize that Indians are just as dark or darker than some Blacks. 

I also wanted to point out that even if she were Black then it doesn't discredit him from being a racist.  McCain even said that when Cindy called and said she wanted to adopt this little girl, he told her NO!  But he has come to love her...weird!

I know women who have slept with Black men or had "supposed" best friends who were Black, but they were in fact in-the-closet racists.  Many play a dual role and it's sad, but it can happen, and he may/may not be a racist.  All I know is that I don't want him as our leader. 

You make a good point. And even if they had adopted a Black child, that doesn't automatically make either of them w/out race prejudice.

McCain feels perfectly comfortable calling Asians "gooks" (the Asian equivalent to calling someone Black a "n!gger".  


McCain Deathwatch, July 10 '08:  McCain presently has a (partially complimentary) 25% chance of winning the election.

If anyone is interested in the struggles of political change in the "old south",  and what an uphill battle we are fighting here in our support of Obama, the following article from Newsweek is on target and very informative.  It's rather lengthy, but worth the time it takes to read.

The MLK issue is not that big a thing with me either. In fact I supported the Heritage Day we were celebrating here in Montana instead. It fit better-as here in Montana we have a vast mingling of culture and race, we have very few blacks. And we were one of the last states to adopt it.

The Heritage Day allowed the schools to bring in Native American elders and dancers from many of the neighboring tribes and explain their history-we had folks from the German community putting on German dances and showing kids how they make sauseges- we had Scottish bagpipe players- we had the Norwegians bringing in Lutefisk and Lefse,  etc. etc.  I thought it was a much more beneficial portrayal of how our diverse cultures could merge into one unified community - something that probably better portrayed what Mr. King was trying to do better than anything else..


I can understand why the MLK holiday may not be important to some, especially an area that didn't have to live the civil rights struggle.  I must say that I love your description of Heritage Day, and realize that day would be vastly different depending on the area of the country. I would love it if every state, city, town and rural area celebrated their unique heritage.  That is what makes our country wonderful, the blending of those different cultures. 

But MLK did have an impact on a huge segment of our population nationally, a segment that did not come here originally of their own free will.  That is what makes this culture and their struggles unique.  

Opinions of the MLK holiday aside, the thing that bothers me the most is McCain actively campaigning for George Wallace, Jr.  Although the younger Mr. Wallace does not espouse the same segregationist ideals as his father, he IS connected with some groups that do not promote the ideals of equality.  And, the mere connection with the George Wallace name send chills of fear down the spines of many.  It's not a connection that one who isn't employing the old "southern strategy" would care to have.

Just a little side note, as I have mentioned the "southern strategy" a few times.  There are a few buzzwords historically used in that strategy.  "Quotas" is one of them.  Beleive me people, the McCain camp is starting to use that strategy.  It's politically expedient.  McCain can't win without the South. 

what we ahve to understand is the TACTICS.

 without saying  actual racist  religous  elitist   etc.

touch on the "emotional" topics 

focus on the race or other emotional issue to turn some voters of make them unsure if obama can get some other votes and put him on the defensive, and most importantly  focus here 



 Fool me Once, Shame on you 

Fool me Twice, Shame on me 

2008 What will it be? 

<what we ahve to understand is the TACTICS>

Exactly, mac.

Mac has managed to put my wordiness into one simple statement of fact.  Thanks, mac

what's it called when you hate the ones who do what's easiest and politcaly expedient?


OK, according to this article, maybe it's my southern background that helps me to see this the way I do.  Read what David Gergen, who has worked with both Rep and Dem White Houses, has to say.
Speaking of Southern State Challenges, I thought this article was interesting. I like the last paragraph which highlights the idea of Republicans going face to face with neighbors to let them know "it's ok" to vote for Obama.
Thanks for sharing that article, Izzy.  The challenge issued in the last paragraph is something my daughter and I have been trying to do.  Today, running errands, I proudly wore my Obama t-shirt.  Anything to let others know it's ok, it's what this country needs.
I guess in the end I will side with Obama that McCain is more cynical than racist. There are many reasons I don't believe McCain should be our next president and frankly racism is not one of them. I won't hold the MLK holiday vote against him since it was so long ago and he appears to regret it. I understand there were many opposed to the holiday and I see how the reasons can be rationalized. But I wonder if there would have been that much debate over creating a national holiday for a white man who had made such a tremendous impact upon this nation's history and was murdered because of his efforts. I guess I just see so many more open doors for progress in areas of race in an Obama administration. He just "gets it." By the way, did any of you see the CNN special "Race in America"? I was not able to catch it (that was a really busy week for me) but I really want to hear about it and hopefully watch it.
well clearly mccain wont loose any votes to have never done anything to help Black Americans, actually struggling Americans in general but most people will only focus on the African American side of this. Without realizing African Americans suffer alot more in crisis like the housing ditch at the moment. Joe bidden could have made reference to many bills he sponsered that would Help African Americans, along with other races who are hurting. HA!

I read this on the "back pages" of some political website, but didn't post is because I was unable to verify it.  When I saw the story on MSNBC last night, I considered it fair game.   It seems that the only black reporter in a press group at McCain's bus was asked to leave for no apparent reason.  Here is a MSNBC video of the interview with the reporter.

I'm not sure what is going on in the McCain camp, or even if McCain is aware of what is going on in his own camp.  Either way, it's not pretty.

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