Jan 04 2010
Andrew Sullivan seems to be in a tiff with Glenn Reynolds over a picture of President Obama and Vice President Biden. This is getting some play on both the left and the right. There’s an accusation of racism being floated at Reynolds, though nothing in his post suggests that that is most definitely the cause for Reynold’s complaint. And yet, some of Reynold’s commenters reveal their racialist bent of mind at his prompting – when asked to caption the photo, some commenters cast President Obama in the role of a drug dealer. Ugh. Because a black man, no matter how accomplished, can be ridiculed with drug dealer jokes, right? If there was no racial intent, my bad, but as the saying goes… if it looks like a duck and quacks like one – it just might be a duck.
More disturbing than cranks on the right with their willful viciousness, is the defense from the left. They assert that when one zooms up close, the president looks “uppity” or “condescending” to his white subordinate, and that this must be what got Reynolds riled up. Maybe so. But having looked at the whole picture, and the zoomed up version, I have yet to see any appearance of uppitiness, condescension, drunkenness, or any other such look. I saw the president listening intently to the vice president, from an angle that forces his eyes downward – because the president is in fact, taller than the vice president.
It seems to me that any attempt to see this in any other light is reaching … and the reach is because the president is black.
Editing to add two points: 1 – the controversy hipped me to the flickr stream – which is just AWESOME. So, I’m glad for that… and 2 – I guess it might be helpful if I upload the picture???