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September 21, 2005

Condi, Alligators and Race

From The Gainesville Sun...

More than 50 University of Florida students protested in front of the Independent Florida Alligator Friday upset about an editorial cartoon the student newspaper ran Tuesday.

The students - who were mostly black - marched down W. University Avenue armed with signs that read "Respect for All" and "No More Alligator" before loudly voicing their dissent in front of the student newspaper's headquarters.

Andy Marlette's cartoon shows black rapper Kanye West, who two weeks ago said President George W. Bush doesn't care about black people at a fund-raiser for Hurricane Katrina victims, holding a playing card labeled "The Race Card" while standing next to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

To understand the hoopla you have to see the cartoon, which is here (if they've removed it I copied it here)

Opinions regarding the used of the N-word vary among Black people (us White folk, I understand, are said to not be qualified to have an opinion on the subject). Some use it frequently. Some have no problem with Black people using it. But some think the word should be forever banned from use. (Personally I think Black people missed a great opportunity to disarm the word, had Black leaders, decades ago adopted it as the American colonists 200-years ago did the, originally derogatory, term Yankee, and used it as a badge of honor. But the opportunity for that is passed)

The rush to foam and foment about any use of the word misses the real problem with the cartoon: I hardly see Condoleezza Rice as the kind of person who would choose to speak that way. She's always impressed me as a pretty classy lady, and not at all the type who would toss about words like that. I may not be considered as a legitimate source of opinion on the word's use, since I'm not Black, but I think the person who deserves the apology is Condoleezza Rice, not Black people in general or Alligator readers. That that salient point was missed annoys me more than anything.

But then I'm still pouting because no one laughed at my comment awhile back that Al Sharpton got a speeding ticket because he decided to use the race card.

Posted by Danny Carlton at September 21, 2005 06:31 AM

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