Comments: "Honest" discussion on race in America? Forget it!!

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I think this comment made by a Newsbusters reader says it pretty well:

And this, my friends, is exactly why, issues of race are not to be openly discussed in this country. They should be swept under the rug. Conversations about race should be left only to the particular groups in question. White people are not allowed to discuss race unless they want to leave themselves open to charges of "clumsy racism". Didn't you know that all white men are fools and that any word they speak on the subject will be interpreted as racism? I'm staying out of it - I don't Balboa pointing out my ignorance of racial sensitivity.

Posted by Hube at September 25, 2007 09:23 PM

After having heard the hullabaloo, and having no opinion one way or the other, I listened to it as you suggested.

The tone of the entire show is, in fact, generally innocuous and he makes plenty of good points. However, the brief portion in question was clearly not "taken out of context." O'Reilly goes to great lengths throughout to point out that Americans don't understand that black culture isn't just about rap (Maybe many of his listeners...but not you or I or anyone who is friends with African-Americans or has half an education). He talks about the Anita Baker concert and how people should see it because everyone's so well behaved -- condescending at best. (who expects people to be rowdy at a freakin' Anita Baker concert??)

Then he says "I" was shocked that Sylvia's was normal, etc etc. He reverts to the first person, seemingly showing that, in fact, he's a lot like the folks he was bashing moments earlier for making generalizations about black culture. Doesn't show he's a racist, or even insensitive. But yeah...these things prove once again that he clearly is quite out of touch and "square." I doubt a multi-millionnaire Republican gets out to Harlem much -- even a "common man" like Bill. So hey, can't blame him.

Mostly, for me, it reiterates once again that you have to be a little bit off to faithfully watch rich, elitist New Yorkers like Bill O'Reilly and Michael Savage bash...well, fellow rich elitists and New Yorkers, with a straight face.

Posted by dan at September 25, 2007 10:56 PM

And Felix, I disagree with your assertion about an honest discussion of race. I think that folks on the far right and far left are incapable of having one, yes. The furthest right of the Limbaugh listeners are the angry aggrieved white men who are beyond reason. The furthest left see racism in absolutely everyone and everything. Can't be reasoned with. But I have faith in the average American in the middle. Which is why I'd like to nuke both the far right and the far left, eliminate virtually all ideology, and get some shit done. But that's neither here nor there.

Posted by dan at September 25, 2007 11:02 PM

Don't blame the MSM - they are trying very very hard to talk about diversity on a regular basis. I.e- the MSM never fails to point out alleged diversity shortcomings or faux paux in Republican and conservative groups.

Heck- someday the MSM could even even be as diverse as George Bush's cabinet has been.

Posted by AJ Lynch at September 26, 2007 11:47 AM