First, I have to brag, I got to take part in an interview with David Maraniss on our radio show Freestyles last Monday. This is what you guys are missing when you’re listening to them drone on about pottery on NPR.
Now then . . .
This Jesse Jackson/Obama flap is a mere blip. Everyone I know who’s had access to Jesse over the years have heard him say worse. Let’s just say Jesse should never EVER criticize rappers for using the N-word. Anyway, the reaction to it is completely overblown. 1) this will not hurt Obama’s standing in the Black community. 2) This will not help him with “The working class.” To borrow an old, worn out jokey simile from Rev. Wright, Jesse is no longer the E.F. Hutton guy. When he talks, people might listen for a minute then tune out. He’s probably more important to chat shows than to the populous.
What is more interesting is what people aren’t saying than what they are. Jackson’s beef with Obama vis a vis “talking down” to Black people would ordinarily be a real concern, especially among the Black Blogosphere. Remember the shellacking Bill Cosby got after making very similar comments a couple of years back? Shit, Michael Eric Dyson wrote an entire book about it.
People are holding their tongues. They can see an historic event on the horizon. No one wants to derail that train puffing towards history.
No one, that is except for the people throwing stones over the FISA bill, now ratified by the US Senate. There are so many good reasons to be hacked off at him for voting for this piece of crap legislation. There’s one reason, and it’s only political, to applaud his vote. As far as his election chances are concerned, FISA is about as relevant as the Jesse Jackson comment. Oh, people may be a little unhappy with the vote, especially those 23,000 or so people who comprise a group of Obama supporters urging him not to vote for the bill, however, they are still Obama supporters. It says so right there. Republicans were going to attack him on the terr’ris’ issue no matter what. He’d have to have Osama Bin Laden’s head on a platter in his living room for them not to attack. Voting for the bill gives him the opportunity to say, with flag pin in full view, how important he considers the war on terror. Perhaps that is important to the one interest group in this campaign that still pushes mad weight, the undecided independent.