Saturday, December 27, 2008

“Barack the Magic Negro”

The Republican party continues to show that it is totally out of touch with anyone except it's extreme right wing base. Chip Saltsman, candidate for chairman of the RNC distributed a CD containing the cut, “Barack the Magic Negro,” to members of the RNC as part of his campaign. The CD was produced by Paul Shanklin, who produced the material for the Rush Limbaugh show a couple of years ago.

You can listen to the song here and make your own decision as to its worth as good political parody. To me, good political parody should be a good laugh at the expense of the person or issue. This one does neither for me. I didn't laugh and I usually do if the joke is good, no matter who it is about. The CD's title, "We Hate the USA," speaks volumes as to it's content.

Whether this CD is funny or not, Saltsman used poor judgment in sending it out as he did. I suppose he thought that his peers on the RNC would keep the CD to themselves, and it would be their little secret. However, he forgot that he might have opposition. He was "outed" by current chairman, Mike Duncan.

If I were a member of the RNC, I would have real trouble electing this guy to any office. He might be capable of pulling anything out of his bag of tricks and bringing great embarrassment to my party at a time when this is the last thing that it needs. Racism has long been a problem for Republicans. This episode doesn't help that image at all, and Saltsman has shown that he has no sensitivity to the issue.

For many years I worked with a man, whose rule about such things was to think about what it will look like in tomorrow's paper, when you make a decision to take an action. Mr. Saltsman and his fellow Republicans need to heed this advice, although I can't imagine them doing so. Over the course of the next four years, they will be doing everything they can to gain some ground on Obama and the Democrats and many, like Saltsman, and his apparent mentor, Comedian Limbaugh, will do anything for attention. Name calling and false accusations are their specialty, and, despite what leaders like Colin Powell and even John McCain have said, it will continue unabated, until someone throws these people out with the dishwater.

Update: I just found this article by Peter Yarrow, co-author of "Puff the Magic Dragon" in response to "Barack the Magic Negro." The "song's" lyrics were written to the tune of "Puff..."

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