Tuesday, August 05, 2008
The Giant Black Balls Of Obama
But of course, that couldn't save Keith Olbermann from falling for it.
KEITH OLBERMANN: What about when it backfires? Because it seems like the celebrity ad continues to echo. And Bob Herbert of the New York Times was on this network pointing out something I don't know that anybody noticed before this morning. That not only in that McCain ad where there two underdressed blondes mixed with the black guy in the ad, but there were also images of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Washington Monument, and the Victory Column in Berlin -- as Bob Herbert put it, "phallic symbols." Three phallic symbols, two blondes and Barack Obama. So this is not just a sexist ad anymore. This is what they used to called "miscegenation," isn't it? This is what they used against Harold Ford.
JONATHAN ALTER, NEWSWEEK: Well, to suggest that somehow, you know, Obama's going to-
OLBERMANN: He's going to wind up dating those women-
OLBERMANN: That's the idea.
ALTER: That's the oldest and deepest racist, you know, canard in American history, really, is that, you know, the slave is going to come after the wife of the plantation owner. I can't, sort of, dissect and decode these ads that way. I just, somehow maybe my media literacy is lacking. I didn't read that out of those ads, but I can see how some people would. And the larger issue, I think, is clear, which is they're trying to portray him as being uppity. Now, is that racist? I'm not sure, you know.
OLBERMANN: Well, if we're playing Password and you say "uppity," the word that comes into my mind, that's racist, yes. Yes.
ALTER: Yes. That is clearly what the larger subtext is. As for the phallic stuff, I'll leave that to others.
OLBERMANN: Well, all right, we'll just drop it there.