Steele Makes a Lousy "Token"

Monday, November 14, 2005

Steele Makes a Lousy "Token"

It's bad enough that people like MD Lt. Gov. Michael Steele like to pretend that being disliked for being a black Republican is the same thing as being disliked because you're black. It's another thing entirely when both Steele and Governor Erlich have been telling and retelling the story of an ugly incident about people throwing oreos at Steele during a 2002 campaign speech. (Oreo is a symbol for "black on outside, white on inside.") For the past few years both of them have used the story to support the notion that Steele is persecuted for his race instead of merely disliked or distrusted for his politics. Steele specifically has used the story to label his critics "racist." However, it appears that the incident might not have happened and when pressed they can't seem to find anyone to corroborate the story.

If there is a silver lining in this story it is this: right-wingers have also been using the infamous "oreo incident" as proof that liberals are all racists. Apologies anyone? What about you Michelle Malkin? You have anything to say? (I'm not holding my breath.)

I really hope this story is investigated further and ultimately I hope that it is made clear that Steele is disliked because he's a black Republican who has a track record of being surprisingly insensitive on issues of racial discrimination, not because he is black. As a Maryland voter it saddens me that so early in this race it already seems destined to be hot and ugly.

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