Friday, May 09, 2008

Bill Clinton was the First Black President ... Sort of

Toni Morrison called Bill Clinton "the first Black President" in an October 1998 article written in the New Yorker. Not everyone read the piece. Frankly, I don't know of anyone who did. The phrase, however, has entered the American political lexicon and history books. But, what did she really mean?

TIME magazine has a series in which they submit ten questions from readers to famous folks. This week, TIME ten questioned Ms. Morrison. Justin Dews of Cambridge, Mass. had this question:

Do you regret referring to Bill Clinton as the first black President?
Ms. Morrison answered:

People misunderstood that phrase. I was deploring the way in which President Clinton was being treated, vis-à-vis the sex scandal that was surrounding him. I said he was being treated like a black on the street, already guilty, already a perp. I have no idea what his real instincts are, in terms of race.
What we found out was that Clinton was a guilty perp and was being treated appropriately. Barrack Obama made a similar defence of Rev. Jeremiah Wright and he found out the hard way that the public was right, Wright was wrong. Just goes to show that sometimes the majority knows what's going on.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

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