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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Obama’s Response to the New Yorker Cover, as Told to Larry King

posted by on July 15 at 23:23 PM

It’s a gracious, unpretentious, imaginative response:

Well, I know it was The New Yorker’s attempt at satire. I don’t think they were entirely successful with it. But you know what? It’s a cartoon, Larry, and that’s why we’ve got the First Amendment … You know, we’ve—one of the things when you’re running for president for almost two years is, you get a pretty thick skin. And, you know, I’ve seen and heard worse.

And then all the requisite details about being a Christian, etc., etc., and then this, beautifully done:

One last point I want to—I do want to make about these e-mails, though. And I think this has an impact on this New Yorker cover. You know, this is actually an insult against Muslim-Americans, something that we don’t spend a lot of time talking about. And sometimes I’ve been derelict in pointing that out. You know, there are wonderful Muslim-Americans all across the country who are doing wonderful things. And for this to be used as sort of an insult, or to raise suspicions about me, I think is unfortunate. And it’s not what America’s all about.

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Finally. Obama comes out as the pro-Muslim terrorist he is.
I respect him for that. His pro-Muslim stance scares me, but his honesty is refreshing.
His Muslim is cool Muslim.
He's bringin' Muslim back.

Posted by Whatevs | July 16, 2008 12:33 AM

It's like he's hearing some of the criticism being directed at him, and adjusting his defenses accordingly. Who even does that anymore?

Posted by Chris in Tampa | July 16, 2008 1:27 AM

You know, I think Obama's response was, you know, well thought out and effective. Except that, you know, he sure does use, "you know" alot.

Maybe there is a comedic flaw the late night talk show hosts can explore, since they can't find many other politically correct weaknesses to attack.

Posted by CBear | July 16, 2008 5:09 AM

But, you know....and so does he. We all know, you know? Ummm....Obama uses his stuttering and speech hesitation to know, throw off those who say he's just a slick, ummm, talker with no substance. You know, when he gets warmed up, it goes, ummmm, away.

And them he makes his point.

Posted by Gabe | July 16, 2008 5:35 AM


Posted by Gabe | July 16, 2008 5:36 AM

itís not what Americaís all about

I wish all the "patriots" out there would figure this out.

Posted by Mike in MO | July 16, 2008 5:51 AM

It would be fun to have a president who's not an idiot. Yessiree, that would be a refreshing change.

But of course, the Republicants will say that any evolution of opinion is "flip flop." Man, we need to deliver these assholes a humiliating defeat in the fall. A historic, Reagan-vs-Mondale style defeat.

Posted by Big Sven | July 16, 2008 6:54 AM

#6: So true. When did evolution of opinion become "flip-flopping"? The 80's? 1992? Is Reagan a flip-flopper because he used to be a Democrat? Is Robert Byrd a flip-flopper because he repudiated the KKK? Was deKlerk a flip-flopper when he worked with Mandela to dismantle Apartheid?

Posted by Jason | July 16, 2008 7:26 AM

I'll tell you what America's all enormous whozeewhatsit!!!

Posted by Christopher Frizzelle's Enormous Whozeewhatsit | July 16, 2008 7:39 AM

"And sometimes Iíve been derelict in pointing that out."

I'll say!

Posted by SDizzle | July 16, 2008 7:53 AM

Too bad Odrama didn't care about the Fourth Amendment.

Posted by Odrama | July 16, 2008 8:26 AM

We won't support ball-less NO-Bama and will re-defeat him in November!!!!

Posted by clintonsarmy | July 16, 2008 8:27 AM

Ask Eli if I can finally march in Gay Pride Parades for Obama. Or do I have to call it "satire"?

Posted by Andy Niable | July 16, 2008 8:42 AM

What is with the spammers recently? It seems like there's even one sock-puppeting for STM every time Paul posts something.

Posted by Greg | July 16, 2008 8:54 AM

What about the Black Panthers? It's offensive to them too.

Posted by DOUG. | July 16, 2008 9:05 AM

@4: gabe, you've truly convinced me. In the same way that fundie christians get to call genocide 'part of god's plan,' I now see that even when Obama is human and has weaknesses like the rest of us, what he's really doing is hiding his godliness to throw us off.

@5: Ha!

Posted by dbell | July 16, 2008 9:15 AM

The people being satirized are the people who see the Obamas in this way, and most likely wouldn't read (or buy) the New Yorker anyway.

Posted by *** | July 16, 2008 9:23 AM

long overdue.

(sounds like he took john stewart's advice [#] for quote #1)

Posted by josh | July 16, 2008 10:25 AM

This has been a fiasco for the Obama campaign from the first moment, and nothing that he's saying is making it better. In his first response, he played to the Philistines by expressing textbook indignation. When the manifest political opportunism of this became embarrassing even for him (and, more importantly, for supporters who'd hoped he wouldn't dumb down his campaign), he tried to feign umbrage by by proxy, on behalf of an out-group. What could be more incontestably righteous than that? Problem is, the out-group not only wasn't complaining but is, like the rest of us, probably smart enough to get the fucking joke.

He should drop this subject as quickly as he can.

Posted by Stephen Wood | July 16, 2008 10:29 AM

also, a lot nicer than their previous "... tasteless and offensive" response. too bad it had to appear on larry king's inane talk show instead of somewhere else.

Posted by josh | July 16, 2008 10:32 AM

I think his response was well thought out and reasonable.

The problem is, people are reacting based on fear and lies, so being reasonable won't work.

Posted by Will in Seattle | July 16, 2008 11:09 AM

That was one of the most inarticulate things Sen. Obama has ever said. The response was totally inadequate. The forum (The Larry King Show), too vacuous and there were too many "you knows". He should let the matter of the New Yorker cover drop.

Posted by lark | July 16, 2008 12:08 PM

@16 it was meant as a Probama comment, but I was severely hung over. He does warm up a bit though, eh? Shows his humanity and then speaks his mind.

Posted by Gabe | July 16, 2008 2:35 PM

I think the cover is brilliant. It totally makes fun of the "dittoheads" out there.

Why is that EVERYTHING with this man is considered offensive? I'm getting sick of him and I'm a democrat.

Posted by thevegasstyleguy | July 16, 2008 6:29 PM

I am so happy he said that. Haven't we all been waiting for Obama to address the issue of how fucking horrible it is to use "He's Muslim!" as a smear campaign?

Posted by raisedbywolves | July 17, 2008 2:19 AM

I agree with Frizzelle. Regarding that first sound bite.

First sentence: Score! Obama acknowledges it was meant to be satire, effectively demonstrating that he is more generous, forgiving and broad minded ( and has a better understanding of humor) than many.

Second sentence: Score! Obama's critique of the NY's attempt at satire is spot on. The cover plainly failed to demonstrate WHO was having this fantasy (read a dictionary people!!).

Third sentence: Score! Obama gives it up for freedom of expression. Stand down all you shrillians out there who think the guy wants to take away your box of crayons.

Last sentence: Score! He shrugs it off.

Personally, I lay the blame on the editor for not demanding a resubmission. Had he/she demanded that the illustrator visibly put this image in the mind of any one of the usual suspects then all this mess could have been avoided. Not very clever, unless they just wanted to stir up some sh;t and boost circulation.

Gimme the job already.

Posted by Vinny Indovina | July 19, 2008 4:14 PM

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