TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2011
Egregious gives way to insidious, subtle: We won’t have time today to give this piece the care it deserves. But Melissa Harris-Perry’s piece at The Nation is a true must-read. To read it, just click here.
According to Harris-Perry, “electoral racism in its most naked, egregious and aggressive form” seems to be “no longer operative.” (We don’t quite know why she says that.) Luckily, though, it has been replaced by new forms of electoral racism—by forms of electoral racism which are more insidious, more baffling, more subtle!
Harris-Perry can see these new forms of electoral racism in the way President Obama’s approval ratings have fallen among white liberals—indeed, among white voters in general. This follows Charles Blow’s recent piece, in which he managed to spot the same problem among Hispanics.
At some point, we’ll discuss Harris-Perry’s piece in more detail. At Salon, Joan Walsh has offered this lengthy response. David Sirota has offered this.
Harris-Perry is a professor at Tulane. For that reason, she believes that much of Obama’s decline among whites can be attributed to disappointment that he hasn’t been more “salvific.” In an earlier piece, she noted this: “Those of us who attempt to talk about racial bias encounter a few common discursive strategies that are meant to discredit our perspectives.”
We liberals just can’t help ourselves. It’s one of the ways we practice to lose. But we strongly recommend Harris-Perry’s piece. It’s that rarest of birds—a genuine must-read column.