Putting the “Ass” in “Associated Press,” one of the wire service’s Obama water-carriers attempts to smear Sarah Palin as a racist for spotlighting Barack Obama’s longtime relationships with Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers:
Palin’s words avoid repulsing voters with overt racism. But is there another subtext for creating the false image of a black presidential nominee “palling around” with terrorists while assuring a predominantly white audience that he doesn’t see their America?
In a post-Sept. 11 America, terrorists are envisioned as dark-skinned radical Muslims, not the homegrown anarchists of Ayers’ day 40 years ago. With Obama a relative unknown when he began his campaign, the Internet hummed with false e-mails about ties to radical Islam of a foreign-born candidate.
Whether intended or not by the McCain campaign, portraying Obama as “not like us” is another potential appeal to racism. It suggests that the Hawaiian-born Christian is, at heart, un-American.
Most troubling, however, is how allowing racism to creep into the discussion serves McCain’s purpose so well. As the fallout from Wright’s sermons showed earlier this year, forcing Obama to abandon issues to talk about race leads to unresolved arguments about America’s promise to treat all people equally.
John McCain occasionally looks back on decisions with regret. He has apologized for opposing a holiday to honor Martin Luther King Jr. He has apologized for refusing to call for the removal of a Confederate flag from South Carolina’s Capitol.
When the 2008 campaign is over McCain might regret appeals such as Palin’s perhaps more so if he wins.
Meanwhile, back in the real world, McCain continues to forbid his campaign from going after Obama for his longtime friendship and ideological partnership with Rev. Jeremiah Wright — and refuses to attack Obama on the Fannie/Freddie/CRA debacles because he fears being perceived as a racist.
Earth to McCain: They will see RAAAACISM in whatever you and Palin will say and do from now until Election Day.
Fight or get rolled.