Sunday, August 09, 2009

Andrew Sullivan Digs Up Conservative Hypocrisy on Race

The example: Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe

Sullivan contrasts Inhofe's apologetics in 2002 regarding Trent Lott's comments on Strom Thurmond against Inhofe's 2009 comments on Sonia Sotomayor. It's quite clear that Inhofe can play the race-card game with the best of them. Check it out.


Eric said...

Of course, it is worth pointing out that when Lott made his comments, his conservative peers removed him from his leadership position... whereas Sotamayor (whose comments were more explicitly racist than Lott's) received the highest and most influential political appointment that can be granted.

Huck said...

Eric, I have always thought that Lott got a raw deal. I did not consider what Lott said to be any indication, explicitly or implicitly, of racism. In that sense, I agree with Inhofe's comment about Lott. But I also think that what Sotomayor said was also taken out of the context of what she was trying to convey and that her explanation that it was a rhetorical flourish gone awry was also very understandable. Thus, I do not agree at all with Inhofe's conclusion that Sotomayor's comments were racist. That's what distinguishes me from Inhofe.

And though you can point out that the Republicans caved to pressure to remove Lott from his leadership position in a craven pander to the race hustlers out there, that doesn't made what they did correct, nor does it detract from the fact that Inhofe holds one standard of what constitutes racism when it applies to the words of a fellow conservative Republican and another standard of what constitutes racism when it applies to the words of a Democratic President's nominee to the SCOTUS (because, quite frankly, I don't know what Sotomayor's political/ideological affiliation is). It also doesn't detract from the fact that Inhofe is more willing to see beyond the words of a fellow conservative Republican and give him the benefit of the doubt as to what kind of person he really is in his heart, while he is unwilling to consider anything but the words of Sotomayor to try to understand what is in her heart.