Tor Books Enters the 21st Century: Step I
Forecasting the Path of China's CO2 Emissions

New York Times Death Spiral Watch: The Real Orlando Patterson Department

Today it is Orlando Patterson, saying that Hillary Rodham Clinton's "3 a.m." ad is racist because the children in it are blond and Latino:

The Red Phone in Black and White: The ad could easily have removed its racist sub-message by including images of a black child, mother or father.... Instead, the child on whom the camera first focuses is blond. Two other sleeping children... dimly lighted.... Still it is obvious that they are not black -- both, in fact, seem vaguely Latino...

Hillary Rodham Clinton's "3 a.m." ad is offensive, destructive, misleading, and slimy. But it is not racist.

And this playing of the race card is not Orlando Patterson's nadir. This is Orlando Patterson's nadir:

Op-ed; Race, Gender and Liberal Fallacies - New York Times: [I]n our increasingly female, work-centered world, most of our relationships, including intimate ones, are initiated in the workplace; gender relations... complex and invariably ambiguous... perception of what constitutes proper and effective male-female relations varies.... Judge Clarence Thomas might well have said what Prof. Anita Hill alleges and yet be the extraordinarily sensitive man his persuasive female defenders claimed. American feminists have no way of explaining this....

[Clarence Thomas's] alleged failing with Professor Hill.... While middle-class neo-Puritans ponder this... the mass of the white working class and nearly all African Americans except their intellectually exhausted leaders have already come up with the answer. He may well have said what he is alleged to have said, but he did so as a man not unreasonably attracted to an aloof woman who is esthetically and socially very similar to himself, who had made no secret of her own deep admiration for him.... Judge Thomas... may have done something completely out of the cultural frame of his white, upper-middle-class work world, but immediately recognizable to Professor Hill and most women of Southern working-class backgrounds....

[T]o most American feminists, and to politicians manipulating the nation's lingering Puritan ideals, an obscenity is always an obscenity... to everyone else... an obscene expression... has to be understood in context. I am convinced that Professor Hill perfectly understood the psycho-cultural context in which Judge Thomas allegedly regaled her with his Rabelaisian humor....

[Anita Hill's r]aising the issue 10 years later was unfair and disingenuous... she has lifted a verbal style that carries only minor sanction in one subcultural context and thrown it in the overheated cultural arena of mainstream, neo-Puritan America.... Judge Thomas was justified in denying making the remarks, even if he had in fact made them....

[T]he only aspect of these hearings likely to have increased racism was the journalists' shrill and self-fulfilling insistence that the nation is exploding with racism... the messengers deserved to be shot.... [S]uperficial liberal stereotypes of blacks as victims or bootstrap heroes are seen for what they are: a new form of racism.... [T]he hearings have also highlighted the need to go beyond mere legalistic protocol in gender relations at the workplace. If women are to break through the glass ceiling, they must escape the trap of neo-Puritan feminism with its reactionary sacralization of women's bodies...

Why oh why can't we have a better press corps?

Comments