Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.
--C.S. Lewis--

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Take A Time-Out Guys

Ross Douthat discusses the silliness and paranoia of the pro-Obama crowd here. The Obama-worshipping segment of the press seems to think that they can browbeat people into voting for their man. (Oops! By pointing out that Obama is a "man" am I subconsciously playing into racial stereotypes about the hyper-masculinity of African Americans?) Seriously though, can it get any worse than an article describing the discussion of Obama's skinny frame as a stand-in for race? Oh yes, it does. Because Timothy Noah claims that ANY discussion of Obama's physical appearance is a cover for introducing racism. Does he realize how many articles were written on Hillary's pantsuits or haircuts? Does he remember the video of John Edwards getting his hair done that someone set to the tune of "I feel pretty" on Youtube? How about the discussions of George W. Bush's jogging and overall fitness regimen? No, forget all that. He seriously wants to claim that Obama cannot be treated like every other candidate because he's a black man.

It reminds me of the flap over the bar owner who started selling Obama-as-Curious-George tee shirts. He was accused of being racist, even though he explained that he really did think Obama's hairline and ears resembled those of the cartoon monkey. Well, I guess they did have a point. It's not like any other American politicians have ever been compared to a primate.

If Timothy Noah is really serious about this line of reasoning, perhaps he can explain the racist intent underlying articles like this one. Perhaps he can elucidate the racially tinged undertones of Maureen Dowd's column comparing Obama to Mr. Darcy. After all, isn't Darcy a romantic fantasy for thousands of American women? Maybe that plays into unconscious fears of the black male as a sexual predator? No one seemed to be complaining about his hagiography in Men's Vogue, even though it praised his svelte physique as well. Apparently they've only recently caught on to the subtle game being played by Obama's opponents. (I can see the secret meeting of Texas oil men, the Bush family, the Illuminati, the weird sisters, Vlad Tepes, and other members of the RNC right now. "I know what we'll do! Let's get a bunch of articles out there about how handsome and fit Obama is!" "Oooh, that'll stick it to him!" "Yeah, and let's make sure that we get pictures of him running shirtless on a beach." "Wow, there's no way he'll win now!")

Seriously, for the supporters of the supposedly post-racial candidate to get so worked up over invisible terrors like this just shows that maybe it isn't middle America needing to get over it's racial angst. Maybe it's the people who dwell on it all day, looking for secret signs of their opponents ill intent. "The guilty man fleeth where no man pursueth..." (Proverbs 28:1)