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How this Liberal Racist "Eunch" was Attacked by the Right

by Anthony Kaufman
July 14, 2011 2:15 AM
9 Comments
  • |

I guess I should feel pretty special that within a day of launching ReelPolitik, the Rightwing has already begun its attacks. This is, of course, the problem with the current American political landscape: intransigent opposing camps hurling close-minded rhetoric without any reasoned debate. I'd like to think my commentary on Sarah Palin's new documentary "The Undefeated" was not vitriolic, though, admittedly, it was tinged with critique and irony. But the misinterpretation of my writing on the part of commentators on the Right is astonishing. This seems to be a standard strategy on the part of Fox News, et. al, twisting what people say to serve their own needs and agendas.

This is the sentence that has set off the mini-firestorm:

"For me, the most shocking moment in 'The Undefeated,' however, comes with the appearance of a black person about two-thirds of the way through. I’m not sure if it’s what Bannon had in mind when he wanted to seize the audience’s attention, but the arrival of black conservative female activist Sonnie Johnson made me realize just how white everyone appears to be, in both Alaska and Tea Party."

Now, of course, I don't really believe that everyone in Alaska and the Tea Party is white. But from what I saw in Bannon's documentary, there are very few people of color in Sarah Palin's camp and the Tea Party movement, in general. So my shock is a joke, of course. I'm commenting on the predominant whiteness of the ultra-conservative movement...

But when "Hip Hop Palinista" Johnson saw my post, she turned it into an opportunity to let loose on me in a completely unreasonable and inappropriate way, which was then picked up by Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood blog.

Jonhson writes: "If seeing me in the film was such a shock to your cerebral, then why didn’t you grow a sack and interview me yourself? Or is Breitbart right and your lack of a set is shown in your need to hide behind a blogpost. Are you a Eunuch?"

What's first strange about this, and I wrote an email to Sonnie Johnson explaining this (which she hasn't responded to), is that I wasn't doing a reported piece on the film, so why would I interview her? If I was doing an article about African Americans in the Tea Party movement, now she'd be the first person I'd contact.

The larger point, of course, is that Breitbart's blog (the writer calls me "Andy Kaufman," which shows how closely he reads) and Johnson's comment overlook the main point: That it's the film that was guilty of tokenism, not me. I would have loved to have seen more people of color in the film, but there were not. Sonnie Johnson is the only black person in the film. And Breitbart, an old white guy, has far more screen time than anyone else. So what does that say to you about the film and the movement?

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9 Comments

  • Lee | July 15, 2011 3:05 AMReply

    "grow a sack" ??? Anthony, you give this trash talking nobody far too much credit by even responding to her.

    You made an astute observation regarding the dearth of African Americans among the TP movement and the responses you are now getting are typical of their publicity (and money) hungry mouthpieces.

  • Ron | July 15, 2011 1:12 AMReply

    Your explanation is nothing but a TRASH.

  • saladgirl | July 14, 2011 9:25 AMReply

    Why is the tea party so obsessed with sex and castration? Palin criticizes her male adversaries using words such as "limp" and "impotent"....and Johnson's eunuch remark. These people make me so uncomfortable with their inappropriate language and imagery.

  • John | July 14, 2011 8:32 AMReply

    ...So you jokingly accuse people of being racist and relying on tokenism, then you are surprised when they take offense at that characterization?

    "I would have loved to have seen more people of color in the film, but there were not... So what does that say to you about the film and the movement?"

    Mr. Kaufman, with respect, in this scenario you might as well be pulling the "Are you still beating your wife?" card on conservatives.

  • Andrew Breitbart | July 14, 2011 8:04 AMReply

    42 is old? Nice ad hominem. And I'm hardly in the film the most. I'm in a few times in the third act. Palin's co-workers are in it the most. And as for demographic overkill, ever been to a Netroots convention? An anti-war protest? a Hollywood writers' room or network executive meeting? Spare us the selective observations on entities being majority white when correlating liberal entities skew equally Caucasian. Lefties love denigrating black conservatives because they know the highly politicized NAACP will sit on its hands, and the leftist media establishment will take that cue and let the indignity stand. Your attack on Sonnie is vile. But purely predictable. Leftists love a good race war and kick black conservatives in the shins to provoke them. Signed, The Old Guy.

  • Dustin | July 14, 2011 7:13 AMReply

    An apology in email is not the same as a public apology, you should update your review of the film and take that part out and issue a public apology on the website. You can add it at the end of this article, of the review, or a whole new entry.

  • StoicLion | July 14, 2011 5:16 AMReply

    Am I the only person who sees the hypocrisy of a white guy "commenting" on the apparent whiteness of the Tea Party movement?

    Anthony, if you're so sure Ms. Johnson's presence is an example of tokenism, why not interview her to confirm it?

  • anthony | July 14, 2011 3:25 AMReply

    For what it's worth, I actually did apologize to Sonnie Johnson in an email.

  • Dustin | July 14, 2011 3:23 AMReply

    Uh, what you said was racist. I think you should apologize to her for your comment. Whatever your intentions were or how you meant to portray them they did not read or come off that way. I would apologize.

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