Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Randi Rhodes: Occupation

What the hell is happening on Wall Street? You have a bunch of bums and scofflaws who don’t work for a living, down there causing all sorts of problems… and then these protestors showed up. There were 700 arrests of people in the movement to occupy Wall Street. That’s about 700 more arrests than there have been of the criminals who work on Wall Street. OK, I shouldn’t say “the criminals who work on Wall Street.” They don’t work, they gamble. Oops, one more correction—I guess it’s not really gambling when the game is fixed—it’s theft. And there we are at full circle, all the way around to “criminals” again.

The Washington Post reported that a hunting camp that Rick Perry and his father have leased since the early 1980’s has a name with a racial slur in it. In printable version, the name of Rick Perry’s hunting camp was “N*****-head.” You’d think that at some point they would have at least updated it to “African-American Head.” The offensive name of the camp was painted in giant block letters on a big flat rock at the entrance. In one sense, it was like a giant “Keep Out” sign, directed at a specific audience, and a big “Welcome” mat directed at a different audience. Perry claims the name on the rock was painted over back in 1983. Even if that’s true, it’s still an apt metaphor for Rick Perry. His past has been painted over, but it’s still there, just below the surface. In a photo from this summer, the rock is still there, with a thin coat of white paint, that doesn’t even cover the offending word. This is the sloppiest cover-up since Watergate. Hello! They should have known that white paint just wouldn’t cover that word! I bet white paint doesn’t even want to. Rick, why didn’t you use black paint? Or do you have something against black paint?

The Perry campaign issued a statement about Perry’s “long and strong record of inclusiveness and appointing African-Americans to key state posts.” Translation: I’m no racist! Some of my best appointees are black! The interesting thing is that, either this never came out while Perry was Governor of Texas, or that having a property with the n-word in its name is not considered newsworthy for a Governor of Texas.

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