So it is no surprise that embattled Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, whose struggle against the federal government’s overreach has won widespread sympathy, has ended up as the latest victim of “race card” politics.
“But haven't you heard the TERRIBLE RACIST comments he made?” the critics scream. “It’s on video, in his own words; Cliven Bundy SUPPORTS SLAVERY!”
Actually, yes, we’ve watched “the” video comments that have caused such a raging firestorm amongst the “progressive” mainstream-media commentariat, and that also have caused panic and consternation amongst Republicans, conservatives, and libertarians who have supported Cliven Bundy.
Many of these erstwhile supporters have been caught off-guard and frightened into denouncing Bundy as a “racist” and his remarks as “vicious” and “reprehensible.”
But it might be helpful to take a calm look at what he actually said and see if it really should be engendering so much angst and furor amongst the political and chattering classes. In the video below, from which the New York Times selected its excerpts to stir up the racism charge, Cliven Bundy makes some statements that are sympathetic to Blacks and Mexicans. He states:
I was in the Watts riots. I seen the beginning fire and I seen the last fire. What I seen was civil disturbance, people were not happy. People thinking they don’t have freedom, didn’t have these things — and they didn’t have them. We’ve progressed quite a bit from that day until now, and we sure don’t want to go back. We sure don’t want these colored people to go back to that point. We sure don’t want the Mexican people to go back to that point. And we can make a difference right now by taking care of some of these bureaucracies and do it in a peaceful way....
Any fair rendering of the above comment would have to admit that Bundy is saying that he’s glad for the gains that racial minorities have made and he doesn’t want to see them to the pre-1960s status. So, is he then saying in the next breath that he wants to see them go back to their status in the pre-1860s? Is he really saying they we’re better off under slavery, that he would have favored slavery back then, that they should have stayed in slavery, that he would like to see them in chattel slavery once again?
That’s the message his critics are promoting. And if it were true, Cliven Bundy’s statements would indeed be reprehensible, and he would, understandably, be a much less sympathetic character. It would not change the facts in his case or affect the merits (or lack thereof) of his claims that the federal government is acting unfairly toward him and abusing its authority. But it would cause support for him to diminish, if not collapse. And that, of course, is the point of this whole media “gotcha” provocation.
Click here to read the entire article and view related video.