What did Sister Souljah actually say?


Principled pundit won't tell you: Should President Biden engineer "a Sister Souljah Moment?"

Within the current context, we're not entirely sure what that means, but let's not bother with that. In a typical display of typical brilliance, Professor Masket has boldly rejected the somewhat fuzzy idea. 

These professors today! The professor began his essay for Politico by engineering a howler:

PROFESSOR MASKET (11/29/21): Joe Biden needs a “Sister Souljah Moment.” At least, that’s according to the quickly congealing conventional wisdom in Washington. That is, Biden and Democrats are in dire danger of losing control of Congress next year, and the one thing that could save them would be by bashing someone to Biden’s left on matters of race.


It seems to be an article of faith that this sort of tactic is a crucial one for Democrats, particularly as the party appears to find itself on the backfoot in the culture war.

Is that true? Is there really a "quickly congealing conventional wisdom in Washington"—a conventional wisdom according to which President Biden needs to create such a moment? 

Has this really become "an article of faith" inside the rapidly congealing inside-the-Beltway crowd?

In support of these claims, the professor cites three (3) examples of such a call. "Mostly, these calls are coming from conservative anti-Trump voices," the possibly innumerate professor thoughtfully says.

Newsflash! Two or three "conservative anti-Trump voices" do not constitute "conventional wisdom in Washington," except perhaps during panel discussions on Deadline: White House. This hasn't kept New York magazine's Ed Kilgore from rushing to join the anti-Moment crowd.

We've never met Kilgore, who is a good, decent person. That said, his rejection of this (imagined) conventional wisdom strikes us as a sign of the times. 

In the passage shown below, Kilgore recalls the way Candidate Bill Clinton engineered the original Moment during Campaign 1992. We can't help noting the ways Kilgore aligns himself with the actual conventional wisdom of the actual current crowd:

KILGORE (11/30/21): The allusion is to a speech famously made by Bill Clinton in the summer of 1992 (when he had already nailed down the Democratic presidential nomination) to a conference of the Jesse Jackson–chaired Rainbow Coalition criticizing the organization for holding a panel the previous day that included Sister Souljah. The rapper had recently made remarks related to the L.A. riots that some interpreted as promoting the killing of white people (a claim she denied).

Jackson (who had expressed pride in Souljah’s appearance at his conference) was sitting on the stage near Clinton as he spoke and understandably felt blindsided and exploited by what Clinton said. So it has gone down in legend as a “moment” when a Democratic politician pandered to swing voters (and perhaps to white racists) by conspicuously separating himself from Black political activists. And that, as Masket notes, is what some commentators want Biden to do to stem the political bleeding over controversies surrounding racial justice, including Black Lives Matter protests, the “defund the police” movement, and the alleged influence of critical race theory in public-school classrooms.

Sad! According to Kilgore, Souljah "had recently made remarks...that some interpreted as promoting the killing of white people." 

Souljah went on to deny that claim, Kilgore quickly alleges. He says it's understandable that Rev. Jackson "felt blindsided and exploited by what Clinton said."

(For the record, he doesn't demonstrate that Jackson actually felt that way, understandably or not.)

Having noted the claims that Kilgore has made, we note what he doesn't tell us. Absent-mindedly, he doesn't tell us what it was that Sister Souljah actually said! That is left to the imagination of Us Tribals Today. 

Needless to say, he does tell us that Candidate Clinton may have been pandering to white racists! Or at least, he attributes that possibility to "legend." (Later, he says he doesn't know what was in Clinton's head.)

Absent-mindedly, Kilgore forgets to tell us rubes what Souljah actually said! He lets us assume that her denial made sense, and that Clinton may have been engaged in an ugly pander—to white racists, no less. 

Our conclusions would be these:

The woods are lovely, dark and deep—but in the end, we humans don't seem to be up to the task of refusing to fall in line with tribal conventional wisdom. 

Also, these professors today! Having established those basic points, we would also say this:

Should President Biden create a Moment, as three minor figures have said?

Our answer to that would be no. But if someone suggests that we should devote a week to killing people of some particular race, it might make sense for President Biden to say that he doesn't agree.

Coming next from the wisdom of crowds: It was shameful when Hillary didn't affirm every word Gennifer said!


  1. Oh, dear. No rational person will vote for a politician because he said something. If politician's lips are moving, that means he's lying. Everyone's aware of that, dear Bob. Every normal humyn being, that is. Don't read and try to analyze meaningless drivel.

    1. Hey Fat Boy, you’ve told and endorsed more lies in this comment section than Bill Clinton could in a lifetime.

  2. "the professor cites three (3) examples"

    No, he cites 4 major voices, and they do in fact represent a significant portion of "inside-the-Beltway crowd".

    Somerby italicizes "that some interpreted" indicating that he thinks it is without question that Sister Souljah was "promoting the killing of white people", but if you read her quote, and further learn about her life and actions, it is obvious she was not "promoting the killing of white people".

    Here is her quote from the interview:

    Question: Even the people themselves who were perpetrating that violence, did they think that was wise? Was that a wise reasoned action?
    Souljah: Yeah, it was wise. I mean, if black people kill black people every day, why not have a week and kill white people?... White people, this government and that mayor were well aware of the fact that black people were dying every day in Los Angeles under gang violence. So if you're a gang member and you would normally be killing somebody, why not kill a white person? Do you think that somebody thinks that white people are better, are above and beyond dying, when they would kill their own kind?

    Only an excessively literal moron would be blind to the dynamics of what was going on; she was asked what she thought was an offensive, patronizing question and answered by asking what makes Whites think they are so high and mighty. When one employs the bait/trigger/attack strategy, a response like Sister Souljah's can be appropriate and effective. In fact, it being effective is likely why people like Somerby protest so much.

    Reportedly, Clinton's move to criticize Sister Souljah was calculated by his campaign, and it was highly offensive to inaptly compare Sister Soujah to KKK leader David Duke. Even as a response to a literal reading of her quote, dumb as that is to do, it is offensive, as it whitewashes the ugly racial history of America, ignoring who oppressed and oppresses who.

    Somerby thinks this is a slam dunk for him, but a good faith examination of the issue shows that he is all wet.

  3. Dear Bob, since you read and listen to a whole lot of dembot crap anyway, could you give us, tomorrow, a short summary of their goebbelsian take on the Jussie Smollett trial? Assuming they mention it at all. It must be funny.

    1. Smollett will be found guilty of being a medic who protects used car lots.

  4. "Absent-mindedly, Kilgore forgets to tell us rubes what Souljah actually said! "

    Somerby does this all the time. In Somerby's case, I doubt it is absent-minded to leave his readers without the means of deciding for themselves instead of accepting Somerby's word about something. Notice that Somerby doesn't tell us what Sister Souljah said either.

  5. "But if someone suggests that we should devote a week to killing people of some particular race, it might make sense for President Biden to say that he doesn't agree."

    And here Somerby reduces an actual media issue to a punchline.

  6. "Coming next from the wisdom of crowds: It was shameful when Hillary didn't affirm every word Gennifer said!"

    Wait, wasn't Somerby supposed to discuss Robin Givhans next?

    Will Somerby slime Hillary again? Remember that neither Bill Clinton nor Hillary is running for any office. When a conservative mentions either of them these days, it is to further current Republican goals. What does Somerby gain by digging up Bill and Hillary here? Don't think he actually wants to discuss media issues -- he doesn't. This is being discussed for other reasons that are worth making explicit.

    Do Democrats and liberals spend a bunch of time kicking Bill and Hillary? That's pretty much what the right does in every spare moment. And Somerby too. As they say, it must be a slow news day, so lets haul out the Clintons and bash them for a while.

  7. I don't think a Sister Souljah moment would save the Dems in the 2022 election. Their big problem isn't that they're too liberal (although I think they are). The Dems' problem is that their policies appear to be working badly. Inflation, massive illegal immigration, increasing spread of covid, growing strength of enemies like Iran and China to mention a few. Regardless of whether these are the Dems' fault, voters will blame the Dems at the polls.

    1. Inflation is so bad, we'll need to raise taxes on corporations, which reduces spending, which reduces inflation.
      God bless the corporate-owned media for drawing our attention to the problem.

    2. With enemies like Iran and China, who needs friends?

      What a moron David is.

      David's problem is that his list of things going "badly" is bunk.

  8. So somebody at Politico yanks out this old tale ( you would think Jesse Jackson’s sad fall from grace might have killed it off) and gives it the conventional spin. It’s the now tired way of asking if Dems are too beholden to their black constituents, a question that has its own problems. Meanwhile, Fox trash queen’s Dr. Mengle comment gets scant notice and you wonder if such evil would even interest Bob as he turns Rittenhouse into a dead horse.

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