Life as I know it… plus commentary

a matter of phrasing

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For my cardio workout, I run.  Sometimes on a treadmill, sometimes on an elliptical trainer, sometimes on the street and today… on a stair climber.  Above the cardio area, the gym has several TV sets playing various shows including CNN.  As I continued stepping forever upward, I had to wonder what was up with all the controversial remarks people were saying today.

“Surely God is mad at America. He sent us hurricane after hurricane after hurricane, and it’s destroyed and put stress on this country,” said Ray Nagin, mayor of New Orleans.

What he drew real ire over though was:

“It’s time for us to come together. It’s time for us to rebuild New Orleans — the one that should be a chocolate New Orleans,” the mayor said. “This city will be a majority African American city. It’s the way God wants it to be. You can’t have New Orleans no other way. It wouldn’t be New Orleans.”

I don’t know what his deal was with the first quote. Although he’s not the first person to say that recently.  We can look at Pat Robertson saying “I’d like to say to the good citizens of Dover: if there is a disaster in your area, don’t turn to God, you just rejected Him from your city.”

He did though clarify his chocolate statement in an interview where he explainedhow  a person makes chocolate by taking dark cocoa and white milk and you blend it to make something special.  Not bad, but analogies are supposed to help people understand what you’re saying, not further muddy the waters.  The clarification in his original speech would have been helpful instead of divisive.  Some people were saying they felt completely unwelcome in the city now and had to think about moving back out.  Think everyone’s being just a little too sensitive?

And in another story, Hillary Clinton said the House of Representatives:

“has been run like a plantation, and you know what I’m talking about,”

to a mostly black audience at the Canaan Baptist Church of Christ in Harlem.  Really?  We’re still making slave references in this day and age?  She may have some legitimate complaints about the White House and the way things are run, but this kind of language is really not helpful to making any kind of progress in the government or with race relations.


Written by arnold

January 17, 2006 at 3:55 pm

Posted in Culture, Politics

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