Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday Fish Fry

At our online discussion forum, every Friday is Friday Fish Fry. It's the day we come together for a posting marathon. Members check out current posts and comment.

Beginning this week on our blog, we're going to add another element. We'll post a query to initiate interaction. Today's Query: What do you think about the New York Post controversy? Are you supporting the protests? Have you written the paper or responded to any article? Do you think the outrage is an overreaction?

We look forward to hearing from you.

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Kelly said...

I don't think the outrage is an overreaction. This is blatant disrespect and definitely can be considered racist.
I don't mind when others disagree with our leaders' decisions, but there is always a respectful and diplomatic way to project your own views. There is no reason to be mean or disrespectful while showing your opposition.

Lisa said...

The cartoon was clearly inappropriate and so was the anti-apologetic response from the paper. Public outcry is completely appropriate.

The question on my mind about the incident is: Who approved running the cartoon, and why? I don't believe for a moment that the editor of the paper could not have recognized the offensive implication of the images, so why would they do it?

Because the ARRA and the measures taken to address the housing crisis are already divisive, releasing this cartoon has clearly added fuel to the fire.

The racially charged incidents and statements that have occurred this week are alarming and the timing could not be worse. Tensions in this country are as high as I've ever seen them.

I agreed with the Attorney General's remarks, up to including the way we as Americans of all races have had a historically cowardly approach to talking about race. Unfortunately, even though I don't disagree with that characterization, I think "cowardly" was a terrible word choice because it's so incendiary. If he had wanted his message (which 90% of the people seem not to have heard the way I did) to get through, that word completely torpedoed the speech because it's all a lot of people heard.

And today, the senior member of congress has accused the Republican governors who are threatening to refuse federal stimulus money of levying a slap in the face to black constituents. Again, I have no doubt that he has a very good point, but I am cringing at the timing.

Up until all of this started, I think most of us who were Obama supporters were still high on the feeling that we had come together as a nation during the time leading up to the election. It felt like we had found someone who represented our view that it was time to come together as a country, regain the respect we'd lost around the world, make health care, educational benefits decent employment available to everyone, and recreate the industry that was once the foundation of a solid middle class.

I resist paranoia, but I fear that there is a concerted effort to inject racial conflict into the national conversation at a time when more than ever before we need to come together.

Zetta Elliott said...

It took longer than I expected, I must say, but I definitely knew this was coming...images of both Obamas distorted to look like apes have been circulating on the internet for some time; I'm just teaching this in my class, actually, and will use the cartoon to hammer home the point that race relations have NOT changed since Obama was elected...I wouldn't call Americans cowards on the issue of race so much as hypocrites--and woefully ignorant; a couple of black people interviewed by local news reporters didn't even understand the implications of the cartoon, and I suspect they are unaware of the historical (and clearly ongoing) efforts of racists to present blacks as subhuman, savage, animalistic, "the missing link"...we need national pressure to bring this newspaper editor down, though, and I'm not sure that will happen...

Net_Bug said...

New York post is always controversial... i'm with guys..