The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Joe Biden? Whatever.

Two stories topped the blogs today, with Joe Biden's comments on Barack Obama getting the lion's share of attention. It isn't clearly a case of racism. I'm inclined to think that referring to him as "clean" is probably DC shorthand for scandal-free, especially these days. It's probably considered quite a commodity given the November results.

One the other hand, referring to any black person as "articulate" is seen as one of the most common-- and insidious "compliments" one can receive, and rightly so. Particularly for a US senator and presidential hopeful. Or Biden could simply have been referring to his noted gift for oration.

So I'm not going to get too worked up about it in spite of his history of racially-charged pronouncements. As former right-wing darling (and presidential hopeful) George Allen learned, racism can ruin you these days. And rightly so. Even Rush Limbaugh insists on referring to one-time Klan member Robert Byrd as "Sheets." The difference is that Byrd came clean, apologized, and repented. And he's still in office.