Thursday, February 15, 2007
Why did Howard pick on Obama?
A piece in today's SMH suggests Howard may have got the dog whistle out again in his blatant attack on Obama, a black man with a Muslim sounding name. Michael Gawenda writes:
"...There's another thing Howard should have known: it was almost inevitable that the question of whether he is a racist would be raised, certainly by the left in America. And that the question would be answered in the affirmative.
For the American left - and not just the far left - Howard has form on race. It's the sort of record that Australians would be familiar with: his Government's treatment of asylum seekers, his attacks on political correctness, his position on Asian immigration in the '80s.
This record was raised by John Nichols in The Nation magazine to show that Howard's attack on Obama was racially motivated and to argue that Howard had a penchant for "exploiting and exacerbating racial divisions for political purposes".
Oh dear, not agan! Gawenda goes on to assert Howard is not a racist. Hmm...as they say in the classics (and in Parliament quite a bit), the jury is well and truly still out on that one! If he is not a racist, he certainly does'nt baulk at whipping up racial and ethnic tension for political gain on a regular basis. What is the difference?