An op-ed penned by conservative author and commentator George Will is making waves among professional dog whistle detectors. What has the perpetually outraged up in arms today? A passage in which Will suggests that when African Americans no longer feel conflicted about voting against Barack Obama, America will draw closer to achieving true color-blindness — the kind called for by Dr. Martin Luther King:
A significant date in the nation’s civil rights progress involved an African American baseball player named Robinson, but not Jackie. The date was Oct. 3, 1974, when Frank Robinson, one the greatest players in history, was hired by the Cleveland Indians as the major leagues’ first black manager. But an even more important milestone of progress occurred June 19, 1977, when the Indians fired him. That was colorblind equality.
Managers get fired all the time. The fact that the Indians felt free to fire Robinson — who went on to have a distinguished career managing four other teams — showed that another racial barrier had fallen: Henceforth, African Americans, too, could enjoy the God-given right to be scapegoats for impatient team owners or incompetent team executives.
Perhaps a pleasant paradox defines this political season: That Obama is African American may be important, but in a way quite unlike that darkly suggested by, for example, MSNBC’s excitable boys and girls who, with their (at most) one-track minds and exquisitely sensitive olfactory receptors, sniff racism in any criticism of their pin-up. Instead, the nation, which is generally reluctant to declare a president a failure — thereby admitting that it made a mistake in choosing him — seems especially reluctant to give up on the first African American president. If so, the 2012 election speaks well of the nation’s heart, if not its head.
Shockingly, liberals completely missed the point of Will’s column. As soon as Will mentioned African Americans, the dog whistles sounded:
A false sense of victimization is required to be a good racist.
"Obama is winning is because he's black" ~ George Will http://t.co/6bOdGivy
— Blackius Maximus (@BlackiusMaximus) October 2, 2012
Nowhere in the editorial did Will say that.
What George will said is offensive,and about as racist as you can get.
— utliberal (@utliberal) October 2, 2012
George Will patronizing racist column today. Disgusting. Thought you had a brain. http://t.co/Dh5pMb2T
— Clio T. Kat (@cliotkat) October 2, 2012
Ugh. George Will. Letting his racist flag fly high. Sheesh.
— Christina Nowacki (@cln0103) October 2, 2012
George Will is a racist piece of shit.
— Jack… (@JackFromBoston) October 2, 2012
Solid arguments from the Left, as always.