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Where All The Cool People Are Not At

By Jesse Taylor
Wednesday, February 18, 2009 23:40 EDT
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I’m not going to say there’s anything racist about conservatives mocking a homeless black woman who’s trying as hard as she can to get a home for herself and her family in troubled economic times, but oh my fucking god there is.

Henrietti Hughes famously stood up at a recent Obama rally, describing her family’s desperate search for a home that wasn’t a car, talking about the years-long waiting lists at the housing authority, telling of her family’s need for something as simple as a home. She didn’t ask Obama to build her a house, she didn’t ask to stay over in the Lincoln Bedroom, she simply talked about a basic human need that she was having a terrible time fulfilling because of the economic downturn.

Ergo, it makes sense for conservative to mock the hell out of her as if she’s one of Reagan’s curler-haired, Cadillac-driving welfare queens.

An example below:

Bonus points for not working in the middle of the day and misspelling “taxpayer” as “taxpaier”, which lends real credence to the point that people without jobs need to start learning and stop wasting our time.

It’s really, really easy to run an effective campaign of resentment against the poor when the economy is expanding or seen as expanding; it’s incredibly difficult to run the same campaign when people’s fears of becoming poor are heightened. Mocking those in peril when peril may be right around the corner is simply asinine and petty (well, more asinine and petty than normal), like the dick – and next victim – in a horror movie who mockingly tells the frightened ingenue that she’s just imagining the gutted corpse she saw in the elevator.

Movement conservatives don’t seem to get that the deep and abiding ethos of moral superiority they profess is inherently situational. Everyone wants to be a winner, and it’s much easier to convince people that the impoverished are losers when they see themselves becoming winners. Fear of losing leads to the realization that safety nets and aid are necessary in order to keep us all from becoming losers, and that in and of itself makes it much harder to laugh at the nice old black lady who wants a roof that doesn’t have a dome light on it.

I have to believe that at this point, the Republican Party has simply given up all hope at winning, and is instead content to use all of the mechanisms and appearances of an organized political movement to just hang out and have shitty parties until they’re put out of their misery.

Jesse Taylor
Jesse Taylor
Jesse Taylor is an attorney and blogger from the great state of Ohio. He founded Pandagon in July, 2002, and has also served on the campaign and in the administration of former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland. He focuses on politics, race, law and pop culture, as well as the odd personal digression when the mood strikes.
 
 
 
 
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