The ritual denouncement of comments made by Cliven Bundy has begun. Here’s how Adam Nagourney of the New York Times reported his comments:
Cliven Bundy stood by the Virgin River up the road from the armed checkpoint at the driveway of his ranch, signing autographs and posing for pictures. For 55 minutes, Mr. Bundy held forth to a clutch of supporters about his views on the troubled state of America — the overreaching federal government, the harassment of Western ranchers, the societal upheaval caused by abortion, even musing about whether slavery was so bad.
Here is partial video of what he said, focusing on the slavery comments. This is not a guy you want to hire as a spokesman for your ideals, but then, he makes it pretty clear that he’s not so good with words. Still, if you watch the whole thing, he’s clear that he’s not “pro-slavery” but rather musing on the sorry situation caused by our welfare state.
Inelegant? You betcha. Pro-slavery? Doesn’t sound like it to me.
Still, Nagourney has to portray it that way, in order to place complaints about “the overreaching federal government” in the same category as “musing about whether slavery was so bad.” Both, we are led to believe, are radical and unacceptable beliefs.
Still, we have on Yahoo! News the following: A List of Cliven Bundy’s Supporters, Now That We Know He’s a Pro-Slavery Racist. And on CNN we get: Cliven Bundy: Another conservative folk hero exposes racial nerve. And anyone who was foolish enough to overreact and embrace this guy without any reservation is now predictably overreacting and tiptoeing away backwards lest they get the stink on them.
Concerns about federal overreaching are not racist. I don’t know enough about the facts of this case to opine on the merits in detail, but the general thrust of the concern is clear: that the federal government does overreach, and that it’s not racist to say so.
I saw this on Hot Air and while I don’t know if I agree with every word here (because, again, I don’t know enough about the case or Bundy himself to opine on whether he’s a racist or a bigot or what have you), I sure do like this lady’s style. Watch all the way to the end, where she talks about Toure and Jesse Jackson and ringing the dinner bell. It’s great: