ONTD Political

Colin Powell Calls Out The GOP

2:39 am - 01/16/2013
Colin Powell Calls Out The GOP’s Racism Problem: There Is ‘A Dark Vein Of Intolerance’

By Igor Volsky on Jan 13, 2013 at 11:16 am

On Sunday, during an appearance on Meet The Press, Colin Powell condemned the GOP’s “dark vein of intolerance” and the party’s repeated use of racial code words to oppose President Obama and rally white conservative voters.

Without mentioning names, Powell singled out former Mitt Romney surrogate and New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu for calling Obama “lazy” and Sarah Palin, who, Powell charged, used slavery-era terms to describe Obama:

POWELL: There’s also a dark — a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party. What do I mean by that? I mean by that that they still sort of look down on minorities. How can I evidence that?

When I see a former governor say that the President is “shuckin’ and jivin’,” that’s racial era slave term. When I see another former governor after the president’s first debate where he didn’t do very well, says that the president was lazy. He didn’t say he was slow. He was tired. He didn’t do well. He said he was lazy. Now, it may not mean anything to most Americans, but to those of us who are African Americans, the second word is shiftless and then there’s a third word that goes along with that. The birther, the whole birther movement. Why do senior Republican leaders tolerate this kind of discussion within the party?

Powell added that the Republican Party is “having an identity problem,” noting that its significant shift to the right has produced “two losing presidential campaigns.” “I think what the Republican Party needs to do now is a very hard look at itself and understand that the country is changed,” he said. “If the Republican Party does not change along with that demographic, they a going to be in trouble.”

Powell also called on Republicans to focus on a more equitable and progressive economic policies that help middle and lower income Americans, as well as immigration reform. “Everybody wants to talk about who is going to be the candidate,” Powell said. “You better think first about what’s the party actually going to represent.”


He made some good points here imo.
blackjedii 16th-Jan-2013 12:48 pm (UTC)
And from what I heard last night Mr. Powell has already been disowned and treated as a traitor to his party so... yay for Republicans recognizing they have a problem!
chantalzola 16th-Jan-2013 04:46 pm (UTC)
I thought Mr. Powell disowned the GOP first, awhile ago? I could be wrong.
bellichka 16th-Jan-2013 01:44 pm (UTC)
I, for one, am perfectly happy to just sit back and watch the Republican party implode over the next 5-10 years. This past election should have been a cakewalk for them, with an economy that has not recovered at the rate that was hoped for, and constant political gridlock. Instead they had their asses handed to them, because they can't get their shit together as a party. Come to the dark side, Colin. We have cookies.
emofordino 16th-Jan-2013 01:59 pm (UTC)
Word! I'm not surprised that the GOP seems to be ostracizing Colin at this point. It's clear that they they're stuck in their ignorant, bigoted ways and that will be their downfall, which they should already realize is happening after this past election. I'm getting less nervous about 2014 by the day.
lovedforaday 16th-Jan-2013 03:33 pm (UTC)
But thanks to gerrymandering, the GOP might be ok until 2020 though.
emofordino 16th-Jan-2013 04:03 pm (UTC)
ugh, you're right! i totally forgot. i have my fingers crossed that we gain at least a couple more seats. :/ booo, republicans!
wingstar102 16th-Jan-2013 02:00 pm (UTC)
This comment exactly.
fragbert 16th-Jan-2013 02:15 pm (UTC)
Of course they're going to use "code words" when referring to President Obama. They can't say what they want to anymore, thanks to cell phone cameras and YouTube (two of the greatest gifts for politics EVER).

Society as a whole has evolved amazingly well in the past couple of decades. We're a hell of a lot more tolerant of differences in ourselves, whether they be skin color, religion, sexual preference, gender identity, whatever.

The Republican party has done nothing but wrap themselves up in both the U.S. Flag and some white sheets, stuck their fingers in their ears, and shouted "LALALALAICANTHEARYOU" -- and then they try to convince us that Mitt Romney was a man of the people and Sarah Palin had more than two brain cells to rub together.

I have no sympathy for the Republicans. None whatsoever. I hope the more moderate, fiscally-minded yet socially tolerant majority succeeds in breaking away from the Bible-beating screech brigade, and becomes its own party.
zharia 16th-Jan-2013 04:17 pm (UTC)
Reminds me of what my amazing law prof said today in class when we were discussing the progression of society in regards to tolerance and equality. One of the white guys in my class (actually the most diverse class I've taken at my school, there's only 4 white guys out of the 12 students, it's mostly PoCs) said that he thinks our generation is ~more progressive and the prof (who is a black man with the most gorgeous New Orleans accent, I love his voice) said he doesn't agree, he thinks white folks have just gotten better at hiding it. The reason society is ~more progressive is because there's more PoCs and less white folks. It was just something that had never really occurred to me but it's seems so fucking true. What Powell is talking about is a prime example of it. Racism is so coded and subversive that unless people are going out and lynching people we're not being racist just 'non-pc'.

tl;dr he is so on the money.
shipperx 16th-Jan-2013 04:56 pm (UTC)
I'm still recovering from reading the comments on an article about the Republican governor suing the NCAA over Penn State's sanctions regarding Jerry Sandusky's pedophilia. Some yahoo was screaming that rather than the sanctions being due to a university's system wide coverup protecting a child rapist that the sanctions were "just because of political correctness."

That's right. Objecting to CHILD RAPE is now deemed to be a matter of "political correctness."

I can't even...
darth_eldritch 16th-Jan-2013 05:55 pm (UTC)
This. All this.
skellington1 16th-Jan-2013 09:14 pm (UTC)
If you're privileged-but-progressive you often won't even recognize the code words and dog whistles, so the bullshit continues on totally underneath the radar of people who would claim -- and honestly believe -- that they don't tolerate it, and those people will happily say that things are much better than they used to be. While the assholes keep reinforcing each other.

In a way, some of the shit this last year has been good for that -- a few things got to the point of being so obviously racist that people who otherwise ignore it or brush it off had to see and acknowledge it.
silver_apples 17th-Jan-2013 04:58 am (UTC)
you often won't even recognize the code words

Until I read this, it would never have occurred to me that calling Obama "lazy" had racist undertones. And I'm sure people will argue that it isn't racist because it wasn't intended to be racist, and they call white people lazy all the time and no one gets upset. The racism is so ingrained that people can't even recognize it.
wrestlingdog 16th-Jan-2013 05:06 pm (UTC)

Right on.
halfshellvenus 16th-Jan-2013 06:22 pm (UTC)
My husband still wishes Powell would run for President, and we're lifelong Democrats!

The man has sense, though-- and he's willing to point out just how damn rare that has become.
louisiane_fille 16th-Jan-2013 07:08 pm (UTC)
I vote Democrat, but I would vote for him if he ran. He's the kind of man we need more of in this country - principled and not afraid to stand his ground and call bullshit on people.
skellington1 16th-Jan-2013 09:10 pm (UTC)
Uh oh, Powell. Admitting the GOP has a 'racism problem' is against the party play-book, donchaknow? They'll be locking you out soon if they haven't already...
redstar826 16th-Jan-2013 11:40 pm (UTC)
He endorsed Obama in both '12 and '08 so I would assume that he has been on their shit-list for a while now
homasse 17th-Jan-2013 01:34 am (UTC)
Just come over to the Dem side, Colin. The Repubs don't want you for anything other than a token anyway.
ascendings 17th-Jan-2013 02:57 am (UTC)
he is totally right.

why is he a republican anyway? :/
maenads_dance 17th-Jan-2013 04:18 am (UTC)
Colin Powell is ex-military - he was a general in the Gulf War. It used to be fairly common to have military/DOD types who were foreign policy hawks, but not necessarily social conservatives or Grover Norquist acolytes. My father campaigned for McGovern, voted for Carter, joined the military, came out of the military convinced of the need for a strong foreign policy, and voted straight Republican every election from 1980 until 2008. It was only this past election that he voted for Obama, because he could no longer tolerate the Republican party's bigotry/anti-tax bullshittery.

mhael 17th-Jan-2013 03:48 am (UTC)
He's spot on, but to be honest I still haven't forgiven him for his shenanigans during the Bush regime. Especially since he's so good at dodging or outright ignoring  questions about it.
maenads_dance 17th-Jan-2013 03:58 am (UTC)
The implosion of the Republican party makes me sad. Not because I have any particular political sympathy with the party now or in its most recent iterations, but because I think it is important for there to be a viable opposition party whose legitimate claims and grievances keep the ruling party honest.
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