Harry Reid's Negro Dialect Strategy

The supernatural ability to accurately divine the meaning behind the public testimonies of their adversaries is the sole intellectual proprietorship of liberals. This is why few conservatives have dared to audibly venture an interpretation of what Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid meant when he suggested that Obama's extraordinary mass appeal was grounded in the fact that he is a "light-skinned" African-American "with no Negro dialect, unless he want[s] to have one".

The comment mirrored a similar observation made by Vice-president Biden prior to the presidential election, in which he extolled Obama as an "articulate and bright and clean and nice-looking guy". It also analogously echoed a remark once made by the disorderedly impassioned Howard Dean at a Democratic Black Caucus meeting, where he pejoratively noted that the only way his rivals could get an equal number of "people of color in a single room" would be by inviting the hotel staff to join them.

My guess is that whether or not Reid, Biden, or Dean are racists, when Senator Reid spoke of the political advantages that Obama's light skin and on-command "Negro dialect" offered toward his chances of being elected, he was primarily speaking from a politically strategic standpoint. At the same time, he was also revealing some of his own skewed assumptions about the kind of voters who typically struggle with indecisiveness during voting season, and what needed to be done in order to persuade such voters.

It should be understood from the outset that Senator Reid's singular mission was to help install as president a figurehead who thoroughly embraced the Democratic Party's liberal values, and who would expedite the radical agenda of his peers in Congress without having to deal with irksome obstructions from the Republicans. This is what is referred to in Democratic circles as reaching across the aisle.

Like all card-carrying liberals, Harry Reid believes that every white voter who did not pull the lever for Obama must be a racist. Thus the first of Reid's synoptic assessments extolling Obama's light skin as an asset was aimed at recognizing that this particular attribute could bridge the insurmountable hurdle of racial prejudice between Obama and those voters who Reid charitably reckoned were perfunctory bigots not yet fully entrenched in their racial hatred. Obama's fairer-than-average Nubian complexion would presumably break this barrier and help them feel less threatened by the presence of a black man in office. Moreover, any lingering doubts engendered by Obama's African pedigree would be overcome by the fact that he seldom employed the disquieting "Negro dialect" when speaking to the white masses, which, as Reid implied, could be summoned exclusively in the company of his own people.

Senator Reid also recognized that tribal tensions prevail on both sides of the racial divide in this country, and that if given the option, some blacks voters would simply not elect the white alternative for the same reasons alluded to earlier which apply conversely to some white voters. This is more a matter of being educated on the issues than of racial prejudice. But it did not stop Harry Reid from conjecturing that Obama's light skin could pose a potential liability even for some black voters who would not trust a candidate whom they looked down upon as something of a half-breed.

Nevertheless, in the majority leader's estimation, Obama already possessed the means to persuade these hesitant voters who were doubtful of his "authenticity." His secret weapon: Obama's uncanny ability to adjust to his audience in short order and be prepared to speak "their language" -- or as Reid rather indelicately put it, the Negro Dialect: a distinct vernacular which he has not yet bothered to clearly define, though some suspect is only a slight variation of the cadence the inimitable Al Gore once employed at an NAACP convention speech.   

Essentially, this means that in the deepest recesses of his callous heart, Harry Reid believes that most voters merely take stock of the candidate's outward appearance or the intonation of his words. Reid's statement betrays a liberal elitist's appraisal of a world that is roughly divided between ignorant light-skinned folk, who would never vote for a darker-skinned candidate, and ignorant dark-skinned folk, who might not vote for a lighter-skinned candidate. Reid's is an electorate that rarely if ever takes time to examine the issues or carefully weigh the fundamental differences of each candidate's ideologies.

Hence Reid's perfect stealth candidate is Barack Hussein Obama: the mysterious, slightly tanned cosmopolite with an uncanny ability to speak the "Negro dialect" at the drop of a hat. And thus was he able to persuade both black and white voters plagued by indecision -- especially the appallingly uninformed ones, whom Reid evidently had in mind when he first arrived at his peculiar assessment.
The supernatural ability to accurately divine the meaning behind the public testimonies of their adversaries is the sole intellectual proprietorship of liberals. This is why few conservatives have dared to audibly venture an interpretation of what Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid meant when he suggested that Obama's extraordinary mass appeal was grounded in the fact that he is a "light-skinned" African-American "with no Negro dialect, unless he want[s] to have one".

The comment mirrored a similar observation made by Vice-president Biden prior to the presidential election, in which he extolled Obama as an "articulate and bright and clean and nice-looking guy". It also analogously echoed a remark once made by the disorderedly impassioned Howard Dean at a Democratic Black Caucus meeting, where he pejoratively noted that the only way his rivals could get an equal number of "people of color in a single room" would be by inviting the hotel staff to join them.

My guess is that whether or not Reid, Biden, or Dean are racists, when Senator Reid spoke of the political advantages that Obama's light skin and on-command "Negro dialect" offered toward his chances of being elected, he was primarily speaking from a politically strategic standpoint. At the same time, he was also revealing some of his own skewed assumptions about the kind of voters who typically struggle with indecisiveness during voting season, and what needed to be done in order to persuade such voters.

It should be understood from the outset that Senator Reid's singular mission was to help install as president a figurehead who thoroughly embraced the Democratic Party's liberal values, and who would expedite the radical agenda of his peers in Congress without having to deal with irksome obstructions from the Republicans. This is what is referred to in Democratic circles as reaching across the aisle.

Like all card-carrying liberals, Harry Reid believes that every white voter who did not pull the lever for Obama must be a racist. Thus the first of Reid's synoptic assessments extolling Obama's light skin as an asset was aimed at recognizing that this particular attribute could bridge the insurmountable hurdle of racial prejudice between Obama and those voters who Reid charitably reckoned were perfunctory bigots not yet fully entrenched in their racial hatred. Obama's fairer-than-average Nubian complexion would presumably break this barrier and help them feel less threatened by the presence of a black man in office. Moreover, any lingering doubts engendered by Obama's African pedigree would be overcome by the fact that he seldom employed the disquieting "Negro dialect" when speaking to the white masses, which, as Reid implied, could be summoned exclusively in the company of his own people.

Senator Reid also recognized that tribal tensions prevail on both sides of the racial divide in this country, and that if given the option, some blacks voters would simply not elect the white alternative for the same reasons alluded to earlier which apply conversely to some white voters. This is more a matter of being educated on the issues than of racial prejudice. But it did not stop Harry Reid from conjecturing that Obama's light skin could pose a potential liability even for some black voters who would not trust a candidate whom they looked down upon as something of a half-breed.

Nevertheless, in the majority leader's estimation, Obama already possessed the means to persuade these hesitant voters who were doubtful of his "authenticity." His secret weapon: Obama's uncanny ability to adjust to his audience in short order and be prepared to speak "their language" -- or as Reid rather indelicately put it, the Negro Dialect: a distinct vernacular which he has not yet bothered to clearly define, though some suspect is only a slight variation of the cadence the inimitable Al Gore once employed at an NAACP convention speech.   

Essentially, this means that in the deepest recesses of his callous heart, Harry Reid believes that most voters merely take stock of the candidate's outward appearance or the intonation of his words. Reid's statement betrays a liberal elitist's appraisal of a world that is roughly divided between ignorant light-skinned folk, who would never vote for a darker-skinned candidate, and ignorant dark-skinned folk, who might not vote for a lighter-skinned candidate. Reid's is an electorate that rarely if ever takes time to examine the issues or carefully weigh the fundamental differences of each candidate's ideologies.

Hence Reid's perfect stealth candidate is Barack Hussein Obama: the mysterious, slightly tanned cosmopolite with an uncanny ability to speak the "Negro dialect" at the drop of a hat. And thus was he able to persuade both black and white voters plagued by indecision -- especially the appallingly uninformed ones, whom Reid evidently had in mind when he first arrived at his peculiar assessment.

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