Michael Steele shouldn’t have blamed his recent fundraising flaps on racism. Luckily, he didn’t, despite the headlines crawling around today.
Watch the clip: Race was actually brought into the discussion as part of a viewer question, which Steele answered honestly – and, to be fair, correctly.
Maybe Steele should have been a little clearer on the fact that he was speaking broadly about the fact that, although we have come pretty far in this country, black people still get the crap end of the stick more than they should. He did bring it up as a bipartisan issue.
But his out-of-context quote has been framed to sound like an excuse and repeated over and over. Any person who wrote a headline – or worse, a story – that implied that Steele was hiding behind race for the recent RNC scandal is either a political hack or a bad journalist. (And ABC’s own site, which claimed Steele “played the race card today,” is no better.)
Again, watch the clip.
Last week the New York Times went over the top, implying that anyone who opposes government-run health care might as well be hanging with Ed Norton and Edward Furlong and giving out curb smileys to anyone who rooted for the Lakers over the Celtics in the 1980s. In comparison, Steele’s mild observation is a much more reasoned and well-thought-out social commentary on race relations.
Thankfully, the White House’s Robert Gibbs set everything straight during the daily press briefing, calling the concept that black people and white people are treated different “fairly silly.”
Because there could be no better expert on race relations than this guy: