Posts from — September 2009
A mundane week made more exciting by some interesting remarks spoken by republican congressman Joe Wilson, Kanye West, Serena Williams and not to be forgotten, president Barack Obama.
Joe Wilson started the ball rolling when in the middle of the president’s speech, he shouted “You lie”, obviously referring to Obama. First and foremost, it appears that on the point he was referring to, it is Wilson who is the liar. But on the point of graciousness and civility, it is obvious that Wilson has none.
Interestingly, Wilson claimed that he apologized to the president (well, he did apologise to the president’s chief-of-staff), but he refuses to apologise to anyone else for his boorish behaviour. Many of Wilson’s supporters have found ways to be apologists for his trailer park outbursts.
But the president soon found himself on the wrong side of an unfortunate remark when he made a pre-interview comment about Kanye West. West, at the VMA awards, had interrupted Taylor Swift, a white country female (yes, even with the name Taylor) singer during her acceptance speech. West indecorously opined that the award should instead have gone to Beyonce.
West’s action is unacceptable. Even if he felt that way, you should never rain on someone else’s parade. But West is an entertainer and it is disturbing but trendy to create outlandish conduct to keep one’s name in the spotlight.
And his behaviour as bad as it was, did make it unto the tongue of the country’s president, who off-mike, called West, a jackass (see how my headline is tieing up now).
Off-mike or not, this made the news. And so far, I don’t see an apology from Obama to West. I supposed his apologies are only for white policemen.
I am apt to think that West supported Obama’s election bid and I guess that he raised money for and the profile of Obama. So in a sense, this is how Obama treats his supporters. Perhaps I should say, black supporters.
We cannot dismiss the notion of race here. Hence the policeman. Or the fact that if a white president had referred to Kanye West as such, we wouldn’t hear the end of it.
Obama needs to remember that he is a president. The affairs of the ‘Kanye Wests’ and the ‘Taylor Swifts’ shouldn’t be his concern. With all that’s going on, why in the hell would he be watching the VMA? He also needs to remember that he is a black-skinned president.
Granted he has tried to put away that perception, but he has gotten a pass on the West comment simply because both are black. He was greatly unwise to even consider such a comment. No one perceives that he would have been asked, much less any such thing if the offending party was white. And if he did, he would be crucified.
As a ‘black’ president, he sometimes appears to be nothing more than the white man’s house nigger. His crass put down of West is bound to hurt black people… another example of an elevated black man putting down his own. Obama could simply have left the remark at, “Inappropriate”, and it wouldn’t have been newsworthy.
If I had said that Kanye West is a jackass, certainly there wouldn’t be much damage. But a black president of America doing so… the implications for black people are enormously negative.
As an aside, is West really a jackass? If his purpose was to keep his name in the press, he certainly got more attention now that the president of the United States chose to comment on him. Might be pretty savvy marketing, I’d think.
Perhaps Obama would like to invite both Swift and West for a beer?
But what if someone had asked him about Serena William’s meltdown during the US Open? Would he have said she was a jackass, or a bitch, or a ho’, or something as merciless?
To those late to the game, Williams in semi-final match, facing breakpoint for the game, set and match, was foot-faulted by a line judge. Serena went ballistic on said person with the now famous “…I’m going to shove this f***ing ball down your throat”.
After his faux pas, I guess Obama has at least temporarily learnt to keep his mouth shut on anything that isn’t relevant to his job. Certainly would save the white House’s stock of beer.
But it is disturbing that Obama is willing to play the conciliator to everyone but black people. I wonder how long everyone before even his most aren’t supporters will see him for what he is. Make no bones about it however, he still is the best hope out there. There is nothing on the republican side that can even begin to take America to a higher positive level. McCain/Palin would have been a disaster. Quite possible they would have already declared war on Iran, North Korea, Russia and Canada.
And they showed how much of a disaster they would have made the economy. They wouldn’t even think about health care reform and they would be showering tax cuts on the rich… as if that had ever worked. They really were stupid.
So we should be thankful for Barack Obama. Not that we are getting as much as we hoped.
But back to Serena. If you want to see how racially polarized America is, just have a black person act bad… then all the ropes come out, over by the big cotton tree where black folks HANG out.
Of course some white people don’t even need a black person to be bad. But it gives them a pretty good excuse to vent. Reading many blogs, I have to shake my head at the covert and overt racism, “I always loved Serna. I’m not a racist, but can we get some rope, please?”. “Low class, low life” claimed some, and you know that they were still living in the trailer park, mentally wise at least.
And some of those tennis commentators? Oooweee. They couldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth. The very same people who had to eat their words when both Williams sisters destroyed everyone including all the great white hopes in their paths. The very same people who ate their words with ketchup when they had to recognize the greatness of Richard Williams as coach and that there was more than method to his ‘madness’.
At the same time, they have never aimed the same level acrimony towards Roger Federer or Andy Roddick. Where is the level playing field?
Now its ‘hang Serena’ time. Ban her for life. Keep dreaming folks. Without Serena and Venus, there ain’t no women’s tennis. America would have no chance in the near future of winning a Slam singles event, male or female. Fed Cup chances… zer0. And anyone putting money on the new great white hope Melanie Oudin… it’s a recession guys. You’re gonna need the cash.
I don’t absolve Serena of her behaviour, but neither do I fully condemn her. If she did indeed foot-fault, then Serena deserves her ass to be kicked. But if the line judge was in error then by all means, then she thoroughly deserves a little bitch-slapping. I’m a little tired hearing that sportsmanship means to suck up a bad refereeing or umpiring decision.
We all need to take responsibility for our actions and if we become a policeman, soldier, politician, judge, umpire, then when we make bad calls, we must be accountable. I’ve always said that there should be no special protection for some idiot calling a game wrong as against some idiot screwing up my savings account or McDonald’s order.
Nor should there be any protections for a president who starts acting the fool… whether he be George Bush or Barack Obama.
September 17, 2009 No Comments