Monday, April 27, 2015

President Obama As "Angry Black Man" (updated)

I know y'all thought I was kidding when I said that Obama's Anger Translator performance Saturday night was every Republicans worst nightmare. But after taking a tour around red land on the internets this morning, it's clear that some folks took it VERY seriously. Bless their hearts.

Byron York seems to have led the way.
...there's no doubt that Obama, by incorporating comedian Keegan-Michael Key into his act, went public with the anger — specifically, the black anger — that has become part of the general conversation about Obama's time in office...

Of course, it was all comedy — don't the critics understand it's just a joke? — but Obama gave his imprimatur to the Luther interpretation of the Obama presidency. Criticism directed at Obama about seemingly non-racial issues, from Ebola to the BP oil spill to climate change, is more severe for Obama than it would be for a white president because it is rooted in racial animus. That animus showed its face in more obvious ways in the birther and Obama-is-a-Muslim memes, but it's always there. Now, in his second term, Obama is finally free to air his resentments.
John Hinderaker - of course - weighed in.
The annual lovefest between Democratic politicians and Democratic journalists hasn’t generated any actual news in a long time. But this year’s event was perhaps notable because it exposed our president’s bitterness, as he approaches the end of his term.
Hinderaker goes through several of President Obama's jokes and offers his own (very serious) rebuttal. At one point, he says that the President's line about Dick Cheney being the worst president of his lifetime "wasn't humor, it was political aggression." Of course he never mentioned that Cheney's statement that Obama was the worst president of his lifetime wasn't offered in a comedic setting. So it clearly wasn't humor. I guess Hinderaker can't imagine that as being political aggression because...you see...a black guy didn't say it.

Finally, you knew Erick Erickson would have something to say about all this.
President Obama let loose over the weekend that he has concluded all the opposition to him is because he is black...

If only President Obama weren’t black, maybe he would realize that people don’t dislike him because he is black, they dislike him because he is a self-absorbed ass.
Apparently, a right wing pundit thinking it's appropriate to call the President of the United States a "self-absorbed ass" because of things he said in a comedy routine has absolutely NOTHING to do with said POTUS being black. Seriously.

Maybe I was wrong in my initial assessment. Rather than the anger translator being every Republican's worst nightmare, it was actually a dream come true for these guys. For years now they've been trying to paint this President as the ultimate "angry black man" - even as he daily defies all of their racist stereotypes. It's hard to know whether to laugh or cry at the reality that they have to reach for a comedy routine to confirm their racism.

UPDATE: Apparently Ezra Klein buys into the "angry black man" stereotype too. I would suggest to Ezra that comedy has a very complex relationship with the truth (see: Stephen Colbert). And when a wonk tries to dissect all that...it dies.

5 comments:

  1. He gets to be President for another 634 days. They don't.

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  2. Tee hee Hee! Hit DOGS.... and everything.

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  3. It's so comforting to ascribe everything to...nothing. Here we have the most profoundly conscientious president I've ever known, but yeah - Black anger. Years ago I worked with a Black woman who got justifiably annoyed at the white men in our office who took all of us for granted as serfs. The men said she had a problem with "white male authority", and I, who was more secure in the position, said, "No - she has a problem with white male rudeness. We ALL do." They never quite recovered. The joke is that the anger IS a joke - and these white, self absorbed elitists cannot see that anymore than they can see him as a full, adult statesman. He doesn't need to be angry. He has already moved beyond where they will ever be.

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  4. Because when I think of great comedy minds, I immediately think of Byron York, Erick Erickson and Ezra Klein.

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  5. They've ALWAYS said this crap. Like they need an additional excuse to invalidate him.

    Thank ya for doin' this so, speaking for myself, I don't have to.

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