Wed 13 Jan, 2010
|Tags: Barack Obama, Dialect, Harry Reid, Negro, Skin tone, U.S. Census, U.S. Senate|
I had hoped that the imbroglio over Harry Reid’s remarks on race would have died down by now, but unfortunately that is not the case.
Those who have read my previous post about Reid’s remarks know that I don’t see any reason why Reid should resign as Senate majority leader, or even why his remarks should be considered scandalous.
I do believe, however, that this situation, unlike the dispute between Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Sergeant James Crowley, genuinely constitutes a “teachable moment.” This is why I’m not surprised that the public back-and-forth about what Reid said has continued so vehemently, and why I want to take the time to elaborate on several issues I raised on Monday.
Specifically, I want to say more about the truth of what Reid said about how people respond to skin tone and dialect, elaborate on the history and meaning of the word “Negro,” and say one or two things about how even plain truths can be sensitive to discuss in the context of race.