Thursday, July 10, 2008

Jesse Jackson's faux pas

People everywhere are chortling over Jesse Jackson's whispered comments caught on a hot mic on Fox News in which he said he'd like to cut off Barack Obama's nuts for "talking down to black people" during talks on "faith-based" initiatives. I even interrupted my evening last night to catch the opening of Hannity and Colmes to find out what it was he actually said and to watch the left and right spin machines get started.

Al Sharpton was one of the guests for this segment, and took a reasonable stance, both defending Obama's positions and chiding Jackson for his ill-advised comments. What Jackson calls "talking down to blacks" Sharpton defended as Bill Cosby-like lectures on black responsibility. It was hard not to agree with Sharpton. Then Hannity tried to compare Jackson's slip of the tongue to Don Imus's "nappy-headed ho's" comment, but Sharpton would have none of it, and again, I had to agree with Sharpton. That's not even an apples and oranges comparison, it's apples and rocks.

But H&C's other guest, Michael Steele, got right to the real problem with Jackson's comments. He said it exposed a hostility to Obama that Jackson harbors, and he's absolutely right. The question is, why would Jackson hold such hostility against Obama on this topic? Without knowing exactly what Obama said to a black audience that Jackson considers to be "talking down" to them, it's hard to say. But apparently Sharpton knew exactly what kind of speech Jackson was so pissed off about when he referred to it as Bill Cosby-like.

So if Obama is telling black youth to get educated and shoulder their responsibilities as adults and be productive members of society, why would the good Rev. Jesse Jackson think that's a bad thing?

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