“You love the sound of church bells, but you hate sitting in a pew”
I am running a bit late blogging the praises of Mr. Obama’s Tuesday speech on race. It was brilliantly put together, but i don’t mean that solely in a fawning way; it was a piece of political campaigning genius as well. Yes, i think it was a much needed, quite accurate, and realistic statement on race in our country. He discussed the issue head-on (and eloquently), which at this point is precisely what we need. He couldn’t have done a better job squeezing his way out of the tight spot he was in – and this speech was going to be necessary eventually, even without the incendiary Reverend’s comments. I partly think that was a good thing for him; he was going to have to address race head-on sometime, but without a catalyst it would have come off as either random, and thus uninteresting or “playing the race card” – and we know no one likes that. He also did something very skillful, and a bit sneaky (i thought), in bringing up Ferraro’s comments. By mentioning it at all, he has extended that piece of negative media attention on the Clintons. However, he only mentioned it to say that we really shouldn’t judge her so harshly, which makes him come off as a most honorable, respectable person.
I love him for elevating the English language into something meaningful and beautiful again. My favorite part of the whole speech was the phrase, “both the greatness and the goodness of our nation.”
Now, let’s have some media roundup fun!
The Speech: Video and Text
Black, White & Gray – Maureen Dowd’s response to Obama’s speech
Mr. Obama’s Profile in Courage – NY Times Editorial (and a fair summary of the good parts if you don’t want to read or watch the whole thing)
Can’t Grasp Credit Crisis? Join the Club – David Leonhardt – this is actually a good overview for those of us who have decided that it’s too confusing so we’re just going to ignore it…which is probably not the best response.
George Speaks, Badly – Gail Collins – and a snarky op-ed on W. and the credit crisis. I generally try to avoid bashing the president on here because a) anything you would make fun of at this point is so self-evident that it’s not worth your time, and b) if i think about it any harder than that it makes me want to cry and scream. But i make exceptions because sometimes we need a reminder; you know, so we don’t get so used to the fact that everything is royally fucked up that we think it’s okay. Also, i heart Gail Collins, she’s pretty much the funniest thing since…sliced bread? Well? I’m not claiming i’m the funny one. Really, though, just go read all of her columns. I only posted this one ’cause it was related – the one about Spitzer is actually way better.
Also, on the subject of sex – we were, weren’t we? – In Most Species, Faithfulness Is a Fantasy – Natalie Angier.
“I Know You” – Lori McKenna