“This is not a circus; this is the presidency.” — Calvin Coolidge
July 30, 2009
By turning a dispute that began and belonged in Cambridge into the latest wave of media excess, how has President Obama helped matters? Instead of a serious discussion about the status and condition of black men in the United States, the media have spent the past day falling over themselves in their attempts to find the most clever angle to the White House beer party. Is the president concerned about what has been done to black men in this country since they were sold out in the Compromise of 1877, or is he concerned about restoring the image he dented by butting into the Cambridge issue in the first place? Just as the president’s response to a reporter’s question should have been, “I do not wish to interfere in a local matter — particularly because it involves a personal friend,” the White House answer to questions about what brand of beer would be consumed should have been, “That is not important.” But, of course, the president himself had set the stage for Bud Light to temporarily steal the spotlight from the Michael Jackson case by making a transparent attempt to convert the Cambridge matter into a cracker-barrel jaw session that might make everybody feel better.
Here’s an interesting op-ed, from the New York Times, on the subject of black men in America: