What Was He Thinking/Drinking?

andrew-young.jpgCivil rights activist. Former congressman and mayor of Atlanta. First African American UN Ambassador.

Yep, all titles held by Andrew Young; the same man who made the off-the-wall remarks during this interview. I know he was “just clowning,” during part of the interview–but in a public forum? You have to wonder what he was thinking. Or drinking.

Let’s break down his main points:

1) His reasoning for not wanting Obama to be president now is that: (a) his children need to get older because people will pick on them; (b) he doesn’t have the “support network”; and (c) he doesn’t have enough black people around him

2) His main reason for wanting Obama to be president in 2016 was that during childhood he had exposure to both Chinese and Islamic cultures.

3) By electing Hillary, you also get Bill Clinton who is “every bit as black as Barack” because: (a) he once initiated a soul train line (and moonwalked down it) and (b) he has probably dated more black women than Barack.

4) Hillary should be president now because: (a) she has Bill behind her, (b) she went down Bill’s aforementioned soul train line and (c) she proved her political prowess when Bill was in office by setting up a “defense committee” to “neutralize” all the women he had been with.

You know, I was going to say more on the ridiculousness of all of this, but after reviewing what I just wrote I don’t think there is a need to. The points speak for themselves. Loudly.

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9 Responses to “What Was He Thinking/Drinking?”


  1. 1 gasdocpol December 10, 2007 at 9:57 am

    I have always liked and respected Andrew Young and his comments have merit but I think that his conclusions about Obama are wrong.

    Whatever the amount of experience Obama has , it has resulted in better judgement than Hillary has.

    There is experience and experience. There is 20 years of experience and one year of experience 20 times.

    At that rate , does the 7 years of experience that GW Bush has in the White House trump anything? ANYTHING AT ALL????

  2. 2 Mike December 10, 2007 at 1:30 pm

    Oprah made a comment about the “experience” argument commonly used against Obama while campaigning with him in Iowa that I think has some merit. She asked America to question whether experience with “politics as usual” is really what we should be judging a candidate on as opposed to wisdom from other forms of service that carry just as much, if not more value ( e.g. Obama’s earlier community organizing work).

  3. 3 kip December 11, 2007 at 7:36 am

    Andrew Young is an American hero. Ya gotta forgive the guy, maybe he’s just getting too old?

  4. 4 Mike December 11, 2007 at 7:57 am

    It is true that Young has done much for the American and black communities. His comments, no matter how ridiculous, do not change that fact. He still deserves respect for what he has done.

    Nonetheless, if his recent comments were a reflection of him “getting too old,” as you suggest, he needs to stop commenting.

  5. 5 L December 11, 2007 at 10:39 am

    I don’t agree with Young’s comments, but I think it is too easy to gloss over what he was saying by focusing on the outlandish way in which he said it. The first theme in Young’s comments is “Not yet, Obama.” I think that is a fair, if not fearful, stance to take on Obama’s record. He simply does not have the experience in the national political arena that we have come to expect from presidential candidates. If you agree that it is not possible to enforce policy effectively in Washington without getting dirty, then you have to expect, if not want, a candidate who has gotten dirty and can do so again. Obama is pristine, which paradoxically is legitimately disconcerting.

    The other main theme of Young’s comments is “Voting for Hillary is really voting for Bill again.” The argument is muddied by couching Bill Clinton as somehow black—which he in every respect is not. Nontheless, this argument holds great weight with many blacks. Particularly blacks who were instrumental during the Civil Rights Era who, after Reagan and Bush, saw Clinton as the embodiment of what they had fought for.

    I wonder to what degree, in all of this blacks against Obama business, the subtle notion of self doubt is at play. I think it goes without saying that there have always been blacks terminally infected with the idea that a black person, a “real” black person anyway, could ever attain the highest positions in the public sector. It’s almost like the adolescent who claims to want good grades, but self sabotages for fear of failing and/or fear of the responsibility associated with success. I wonder how many blacks “say” they want a black president, but simply cannot fathom the idea as a reality.

    I think Obama has a duty to help such blacks break some of their mental shackles by answering the Andrew Youngs of the world with two simple, powerful rejoinders: (1) “Why not now?” or “If not now, then when?” and (2) “Despite what you may have heard, I am going to be the first black president of the United States.”

  6. 6 Mike December 11, 2007 at 11:25 am

    Interesting that you brought up the self-doubt issue. Obama made reference to this collective self-doubt in an interview with Tavis Smiley last month. I’ve been thinking about doing a post on it ever since…

    He mentioned a “psychology of fear” in the black community regarding whether we can succeed in such a way. He said Blacks wonder whether he can get in the office and if he does, whether he’d be able to withstand the republican’s attacks. Some, in his opinion, decide to not support him in response to this doubt and fear and some do so as a way of protecting him (expressed in Young’s, “they will pick on his kids” comments).

    Obama addressed this by insisting we not be afraid of trying–citing our history of breaking barriers in this country has always rested on pushing on in the face of doubt and not being self-defeating. It was pretty deep; and it spoke to what you said he should do more of in your last sentence. Thanks for bringing this up. I may have to do a post on this topic after all.

  7. 7 L December 11, 2007 at 11:48 am

    You f**k with Tavis real hard. I encourage you to do that post, but make sure you get real, real deep and psychological with it. Bring some of that PhD flow to it.

    Another possibly interesting post (assuming, as I do, that you’ll do the whole Obama series as the primaries heat up) is the ways in which Obama has laid bear the values underlying black votership. For example, the entire capitalist/democratic structure is reliant on self interest, however, blacks are demonstrating that self interest is not a shared fundamental value. For instance, there are blacks who WILL NOT vote for Obama out of a real fear that he will be assassinated if elected, or if he gets so far as winning the Democratic primary. That choice is not motivated by self interest, but protectionism. And there are other examples.

    I wonder how many Latter-Day Saints are squeamish about voting for Romney for the reasons many blacks are squeamish about voting for Obama. The numbers are likely real different. Can blacks learn anything from their “Obama experience” to apply to voting strategy in the future? Can future candidates learn anything about garnering the black vote from the attitudes and values they express in respect to Obama? Interesting stuff.

  8. 8 Mike December 11, 2007 at 8:58 pm

    LOL. Yeah, I do roll hard with Tavis. Who else does better interviews and reporting on the black community? Expect the post in the near future — “PHD flow” included.


  1. 1 Karl Jobst Trackback on March 8, 2015 at 4:11 am

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