You knew Walker’s opponents would get silly when the debate started with “re-tweet”
Well, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s columnist on race, Eugene Kane, has weighed-in on whether an accidental re-tweet” by a Walker staffer was some sort of racially coded message.
Let’s face it: When the first black president is in town and campaign staffers for the leading Republican candidate for governor start making references to “Soul Train,” that doesn’t seem like a coincidence.
When you add to that the long-standing belief by many in the black community that some opposition to high speed rail in Wisconsin is tied to the fear of a transportation system that would allow blacks and other minorities to travel the state more easily, it starts to look like a Lee Atwater moment.
So we’re bringing back the 1980’s in more ways than one, even dredging up the ghost of Lee Atwater. Of course, the transportation system in question is not about catering to poor minorities from the central city looking for transportation to a job in the suburbs. It’s targeted to an upper-middle-class looking to go from city to city using less-than-mass-transit without having to rub elbows with the hoi polloi on Greyhound. Don’t believe me? Check out the memo from Alderman Robert Bauman. Perhaps there are some African Americans who wonder why white liberal politicians keep trying to build trains for themselves rather than support more useful bus lines. Perhaps Kane should talk to that group of “many in the black community” rather than the “many in the black community” Kane finds echoing the thoughts in his own head.
The best part of the column is that Kane knows the Walker campaign is guilty of something. Why?
It would be easier to dismiss the gaffe as an honest mistake if not for the fact neither Republican candidate for governor seems to be making much effort to court African-American votes. Walker’s hard-line stance against government spending pretty much ensures he’s not going to make any promises to help low-income black residents in a city like Milwaukee.
It’s hard to find many black people at all in any of the recent political ads by either Walker or Mark Neumann.
Because the tweet featured African Americans dancing, it’s racist, and Kane knows it’s racist because they’re aren’t any African Americans in Walker or Neumann television ads? So Walker is racist if his campaign shows African Americans, even accidentally, and he’s racist if the campaign does not show African Americans.
And then Kane says that because Walker is not effectively courting the votes of African Americans in the Republican Primary by promising more government spending, it must be a racially coded Twitter re-tweet by his staffer? Really? Even though African Americans like Eugene Kane usually don’t vote in the Republican primaries, and the people that do vote in the Republican primaries don’t like government spending.
I really need to learn the brand name of the tinfoil Kane is using for the hat he’s wearing while doing all this racial de-coding. It must be extra strong stuff.