Big Media and leftists (sorry for the redundancy) came to CPAC with an agenda, and high on the list was proving how racist CPAC is.
What is the evidence of this rampant and terrible racism?
Well, there is a recent story that is all over the liberal blogs, about a panel on minority outreach, that tells us 1) some racist white dude (Scott Terry) implied Frederick Douglass should have been grateful to his master for providing him food and shelter, and 2) a black woman reported from “Voice of Russia” (Kim Brown) was shouted down when she “repeatedly” tried to ask questions.
Let’s deal with the racist dude first. Is it fair to judge a) the group in the room or b) CPAC as a whole or c) the GOP as a whole based on one racist dude in the audience of a panel on race? To state the question is absurd. At most, you might go along with a) if you were foolish enough to believe Think Progress’s claim: “Several people in the audience cheered and applauded Terry’s outburst.” Immediately after making that claim, Think Progress embeds a video that gives the lie to their description:
It is simply a lie to say several people cheered and applauded. As you can easily see from watching this short video, most people murmured with a “can you believe this guy?” reaction. The woman in front in blue has her jaw dropped wide open, and is looking around at others in amazement. Others turn and look at the guy incredulously. A single person in the right foreground, seemingly dressed in odd garb and holding some implement, applauds — but it is impossible to discern what he or she is applauding, or whose side he or she is on. As the AtlanticWire reported: “When the crowd realized what Terry was suggesting, there were wide-eyed looks around the room. . .”
Now let’s go to the black woman who was shouted down. The lefties would have you believe that she is being shouted down simply for disagreeing with the right on race issues. Let’s look at one representative post, from Salon:
[T]he panel quickly began to devolve when another member of the crowd, a black liberal woman, took offense to Terry’s question, and was then repeatedly shouted down after saying Smith was being “disingenuous” for saying that the Democrats started the KKK and were the ones pushing to keep slavery in place. (Another female member of the audience twice dismissed her questions with a pointed reference to “women’s studies.”)
It got even worse when the woman tried to ask why Republicans won’t push back on racist comments and campaign ads made in the 2012 campaign, like one racially charged ad put out by Pete Hoekstra. The crowd got rowdy, saying things like, “We don’t want your question,” and “We don’t want to hear it.”
How horrible! All she was doing was asking questions and she got shouted down. Clear racism, right?
But was she being polite . . . or was she being disruptive? Well, that should be easy to determine. Let’s just look at the video and see, right? Surely these lefty sites gave us video of this exchange?! Right? Right?
Well, in the Salon piece, they have only video of the racist dude. In the Think Progress piece, they have only video of the racist dude. Same for Raw Story. Talking Points Memo has no video at all. The same goes for any other lefty site discussing this encounter. I have gone on Twitter asking if anyone can find video of the encounter. Nobody can.
Why do you suppose that is? Did they not take video of the black woman who was supposedly shouted down for merely expressing her opinions?
Of course they did. The fact that we’re not seeing it suggests to me that she was being disruptive — and deliberately so — in order to create a story out of nothing. My conclusion is bolstered by a passage wherein Talking Points Memo tries to score points by noting that “attendees” (they cite only one) were (was?) more upset by Brown than Terry.
Attendees interviewed by TPM afterwards expressed outrage at the way the event turned out. Not at Terry and Heimbach — they were mad at Brown.
Chad Chapman, 21, one of the few black attendees, said overall he enjoyed the event — except “there were lots of interruptions, mainly because of the woman.”
TPM includes this interview because Chapman was more critical of Brown than Terry. But maybe Brown was more disruptive than Terry — and maybe she meant to be, as a stunt, to prove the narrative that the media wanted (and always wants) from CPAC.
But wait! Is Patterico suggesting that groups come to CPAC with the explicit intention of creating viral videos?!?! Well, yes, I am — and I can prove it. BuzzFeed, to their credit, reported on one such instance, even after it didn’t work out:
Democrats hoped to catch attendees at the Conservative Political Action Conference cheering the on-screen death of Ashley Judd at a screening of Olympus Has Fallen Friday evening.
But conference organizers told conservatives, a person at the screening said, to leave their politics at the door, and the gotcha devised by supporters of the actress, who is reportedly on the verge of launching a race for the Kentucky Senate seat, fizzled.
BuzzFeed says Democrats contacted BuzzFeed in advance and promised soon-to-be viral video of Republicans clapping and cheering when a character played by Judd, a possible Senate candidate in Kentucky, died on screen. But, sadly, “[t]he video that resulted shows a jerky and out-of-focus scene from Olympus Has Fallen and records audio of the small CPAC audience sounding unmoved.” Golf clap.
And as long as we’re talking about people being shouted down, what about Orly Taitz? We’re told Birtherism is racist, and a CPAC audience shouted down Orly Taitz and her birtherism:
What Larger Lesson can we learn from that? Apparently, none.
Here’s the last example I can find of alleged racisms: a black man simply asking questions who got tossed out (at least, that is the lefty narrative):
But if you watch the video, it’s a black security guy telling him to leave. The security guy tells everyone they have to get out because they are creating a scene and can’t have a civil conversation without raising their voices.
I’d also like to address the question that the man is asking in the last video — why are there not more black people in the GOP? — by asking one of my own: why Democrats doing such a poor job of recruiting whites? It turns out that it’s not just white men who voted for Romney. A majority of white women did, too.
Why, oh why, can’t Democrats recruit whites?
Asking that question sounds kind of dumb, of course, but only because it brings into sharp relief the absurdity of appealing to ethnic or racial groups as ethnic or racial groups. It also reveals that Democrats blame whites with incredible inconsistency. Whose fault is it that racial group x did not vote for political party y? According to Democrats, it depends. If whites did not vote for the Democratic candidate, it’s the voters’ fault, because white people are racist. If blacks did not vote for the Republican candidate, it’s the party’s fault, because they did appeal to blacks, because white people are racist. The only thread of consistency is blaming the white people.
I’m sick of a point of view where parties see voters as customers who are always right, and have to be recruited or catered to. The fact is, some onus should be placed on voters to act responsibly. I’m the last to say the GOP’s messaging to minorities is good, or that it can’t be improved. But folks like the guy in the last video don’t claim the GOP is failing because of messaging. He just wants the GOP to espouse “progressive” policies. Watch the video. That’s what he says. Listen, dummy: Republicans aren’t going to become Democrats to appeal to black people. What they need to do is explain how programs like vouchers can help blacks. How the Social Security system is rigged against blacks. How less government regualation will lead to a rising economy, which will benefit blacks.
Finally, remember the woman at the end of this video on Jimmy Kimmel?
She very candidly admits that she voted for Obama because he’s black. Yet CPAC is being called racist because of one racist dude who made a scene. Imagine someone on national television saying he voted for Romney because he’s white. Jaws would drop. But we laugh at this woman! Ha, ha! There is a double standard at work here, and it runs throughout all the efforts to label Republicans racist because of the events at CPAC.