National Review’s The Corner continues to serve as a breeding ground for Obama-related race baiting. Here’s Michael Knox Beran explaining that those of us who support President Obama must be blinded by the color of his skin:
Ordinarily a politician whose rhetoric diverges so far from the reality of his record would be run out of town, but with this president it is different. After four years of mediocre leadership, the majority of Americans continue to judge Barack Obama not on what he has done but on who he is. In an ironic reversal of the criteria of judgment set forth by Martin Luther King, they judge him not on the content of his character (or more precisely his actions and achievements) but on the color of his skin. The president is therefore exempt from the penalties other democratically elected leaders pay when they offend too egregiously against the truth; unlike them, he can stray into the realm of fantasy with impunity.
This is the curse of identity politics, but there are some grounds for believing that it will not permanently disfigure the country’s politics. The majority of Americans have decided that, whatever his faults, this president must be deemed a success, even if he has not actually succeeded — must be allowed to take his greatness honoris causa in lieu of his failure really to have earned it. There may be wisdom in the judgment that eight years of dubious leadership is a small price to pay for the sake of the symbolic value of the spectacle. One only wishes that the president had the self-knowledge to recognize the gift that has been conferred upon him, and the humility to acknowledge that his success derives, not from the flawed policies he continues to pursue, but from an act of electoral grace and favor.
What better way to defend against claims that Obama-hatred might have a racial component than to level the charge of racism back at Obama’s supporters? Beran can’t even comprehend that a majority of Americans might honestly and reasonably believe that Obama has performed quite well in office, especially given the mess he inherited from his predecessor. Nor is he interested in spending any time or effort considering non-race related explanations. Instead he embraces a form of the affirmative action argument that right wingers have leveled at Obama since he first announced he was running for the Presidency. This time, it’s not Obama’s college, law school or law journal that are allowing him to advance merely because he is black, it’s the American people who elected and then re-elected him. Beran likes to think he knows what Martin Luther King would think of the Obama presidency. I am quite confident that MLK would reserve his scorn for Beran, instead.