December 12, 2002
Drop 'em a line
TAPPED invites people to email Mark Steyn and inform him that his latest column contains a big, fat, long-since-debunked lie.
Meanwhile, Atrios is on Day Three of his campaign to get Jonah Goldberg and Andrew Sullivan to apply the same principles they've admirably stated about Trent Lott's racism to the equally appalling racism of Washington Times editor Robert Stacy McCain. He's encouraging folks to drop J-Go and Randy Andy a note as well. And be sure to post any interesting replies if you do.
(By the way, if you haven't read that article about R.S. McCain yet, get cracking already. It's ugly with a capital UGH.)
Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 12, 2002 to Other punditry
This is ridiculous. Why would Sullivan apply a "double standard" to McCain? Usually double standards are made in favor of the powerful. They're shouting down the Senate Majority Leader, but they're hypocrits if they don't also waste their time shouting down an assistant section editor of a right-wing paper? McCain is a nobody.
Sullivan and others went out of their way to denounce Lott's idiocy and instead of appreciating it, some people are trying to use it to put us in the perpetual defensive. By shouting down one racist, is they now doomed to answer for every instance found?
Yeah, what McCain said is wrong and bigotted. Do you honestly think Sullivan would proclaim otherwise?
I think I should try to re-state what I'm trying to say.
It's not that McCain doesn't deserve denunciation. It's the manner in which it the charge is being levied not against McCain, but against everyone who doesn't take the time to denounce him. It's analogous, I guess, to the warbloggers insistence that every left-wing anti-American claptrap gets denounced by Democrats lest they be an anti-American themselves. I disagree with this on the same grounds that I disagree with that.
It's almost enough to make me stay quiet about McCain, cause once I say something about him, then I have to say something about the next one and the next one and the next one. Go to Free Republican any given day and you'll see a lot of racism. Go the Democratic Underground and you'll see other kinds of ugliness.
We've got our Trent Lotts spouting about the pros of segregation, you've got your Maxine Waterses extolling the virtues of fascist Castro and David Boniors protesting the war from behind enemy lines.
They all deserve to be denounced and I'm sure if you asked Andrew Sullivan his thoughts on McCain or I asked a moderate Democrat his thoughts on Castro's sympathizers, you wouldn't find much of a defense.
But there is a difference between denouncing it and denouncing us just because we haven't denounced it (unless there is reason to believe we wouldn't, but the entire context of the question is predicated on the fact that Sullivan has, in fact, made similar denunciations).
Alex, what you say is reasonable, so let me clarify. Goldberg and Sullivan both write for the WashTimes. Given that the WT employs an editor whose racial views are at least as disgusting as those which they've recently denounced, isn't it a tad hypocritical of them to call for Lott's removal while they continue to accept paychecks from the WT? If Lott's racism stains those who associate with him and support him, does the same hold true for those who work with RS McCain?
The answer to that question is not necessarily Yes, but maybe they ought to at least consider it. I think that's fair.
I agree with you that a round of "well, why haven't you denounced this person yet?" is a waste of time. I do think, though, that these guys need to think about their relationship through the WT with McCain.
See? This is what I get for almost never reading the WashTimes. I didn't know either of them wrote for it. I'm not sure that it's their responsibility to come forward, but it does become a fair question to ask.
I was under the assumption that they were targeted in large part because they were out in front on the Trent Lott denunciations, which struck me as a pretty cynical criterion to prove that even the non-racist Republicans were suspect.