This Is the Last Time We’ll Talk about Richard Cohen

That’s it, I’m officially done with Richard Cohen. In today’s Washington Post op-ed about Chris Christie’s presidential chances in 2016, Cohen unleashed this nonsense:

Today’s GOP is not racist, as Harry Belafonte alleged about the tea party, but it is deeply troubled — about the expansion of government, about immigration, about secularism, about the mainstreaming of what used to be the avant-garde. People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York — a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?) This family represents the cultural changes that have enveloped parts — but not all — of America. To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.

The problem with this is Richard Cohen isn’t wrong about how the GOP thinks, he’s wrong to think that gagging at interracial families is merely merely “troubling.” Feeling ill at an interracial family is, in fact, racist.

Cohen apparently disagrees. In an interview with The Huffington Post he responded to accusations of racism:

The word racist is truly hurtful . . . it’s not who I am. It’s not who I ever was. It’s just not fair. It’s just not right.

You know what’s hurtful? Getting shot in the face.

Also on today’s #TWiBRadio, #TeamBlackness discussed Joe Arpaio denying adequate food for unpatriotic inmates and John McCain is hearing voices — and they’re telling him to run for President.

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And this morning on #amTWiB, The Morning Crew discussed the attack on healthcare navigators, do you know if Grandma’s dentures were made in a lab or someone’s dirty basement and the alcohol industry may be gearing up against weed.

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(Cross-posted)






62 replies
  1. 1
    Violet says:

    Were we talking about Richard Cohen in the first place? Who is he? Why would anyone talk about him or care what he thinks? Clearly he’s a racist ass.

  2. 2

    I have a simple solution to this, stay away from the Pravda on the Potomac.

  3. 3
    Poopyman says:

    We may be done with Richard Cohen, but there’s still something to be said about the Washington Post, which still employs Cohen and a cadre of both-sides-do-it, “centrist” claptrap spewers. I’m relieved their march to irrelevancy is so public and obvious.

    The thread down below had much to say about Cohen, but I think a little more should be said about the WaPo’s editors and publisher. Or a lack of editing, to be precise.

  4. 4
    eemom says:

    Hey, y’all can talk about him all you want…..I’m still not gonna read his shit.

  5. 5
    Hal says:

    Mother Jones 10 worst Richard Cohen moments. All are ties at #1.

    http://www.motherjones.com/moj.....-the-worst

    Also:

    People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York — a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children.

    Racist people with conventionally racist views MR. Cohen.

  6. 6
    kindness says:

    And Richard is the assigned WaPo liberal don’t forget.

  7. 7
    Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader says:

    Cohen is the first one up against the wall after The Glorious Revolution.

  8. 8
    lamh36 says:

    Speaking of being “shot in the face”

    Son of a bitch!!! The MFer claiming he shot the young lady in the face, “accidentally”

    @ABC 1m
    Renisha McBride Family Demands Conviction After Autopsy Shows Shot in the Face http://abcn.ws/1bBlKX7

  9. 9
    srv says:

    I’m starting to think that Cohen was the real author of all those Ron Paul newsletters.

  10. 10
    Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader says:

    Maybe we can trade Cohen for Brooks at the next pundit combine? (Now that Brooks is an honorary Obama Steely-Eyed Realist.)

  11. 11
    low-tech cyclist says:

    EJW, you’re a good deal more tolerant than I. I’ve been done with Cohen since somewhere around 2006, give or take a year.

    Like Poopyman and kindness say above, the real problem isn’t Cohen, it’s his continued presence on the WaPo op-ed page, and as one of its supposed ‘liberal’ columnists, at that.

    One can only hope Bezos trashes the entire stable of WaPo opinionators and starts over.

  12. 12
    some guy says:

    Poopyman is spot on, Hiatt and Weymouth both approved of this, and still defend this obvious racist POS.

  13. 13
    scav says:

    The pong of rotting media is getting pungent. It’s like Cohen is a large Carrion flower giving his desperate all to attract flies and subscribers before it’s too late.

  14. 14
    KG says:

    @lamh36: two things… First, while I’m in favor of self defense as an affirmative defense, I am appalled that the stand your ground laws have flipped the idea of an affirmative defense so blatantly. Second, weren’t the original reports that she was shot in the back? Thirdly, and not to be an ass because a young woman died that did nothing wrong, but isn’t “being shot in the face” something that probably doesn’t need an autopsy to determine?

  15. 15

    Can we beam him into space? Is in a Trekkie mood today.

  16. 16
    The Other Chuck says:

    Let’s edit Richard P Cohen:

    Today’s GOP … is deeply troubled

    Perfecto.

  17. 17
    Schlemizel says:

    “I’m not a racist but you have to understand that the party simply must take a stand in favor of racism in order to get them to vote for the party. If some ni . . . ni . . . knee-grows get hurt its just an unintended consequence. Nothing can be done about that.”

    This is like Friedman inventing a cab driver or Brooks imagining hearing something over the Applebees salad bar – a convenient way of pretending your stupidity has an external locus.

  18. 18
    Poopyman says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader: I think you’re horning in on VDE’s territory here.

    @schrodinger’s cat: How ’bout we beam him into the sun?

  19. 19
    David Koch says:

    So when Dick Cohen sees Clarence Thomas at dinner with his white wife, he gags?

  20. 20
    mere mortal says:

    Perhaps the outrage is misplaced, as everyone seems to be misinterpreting Cohen’s statement.

    He doesn’t mean that conventional people’s gag reflex is caused by a white man marrying a black woman, not at all.

    The gag reflex is caused by the fact that such a relationship was not immediately disqualifying for political office.

    Oh, I suppose I’m not really helping Cohen out here, am I?

    But, before we get too high on our horse, remember that DeBlasio’s Democratic primary opponents, as well as the sitting mayor, accused him of playing the “race card” for, get this, having his own son in a campaign commercial.

    From the Post, 9/7/13:
    “Class warfare and racist,” the mayor responded. Asked to clarify “racist,” Bloomberg said, “Well, no, no. I mean he’s making an appeal using his family to gain support.”

    It is difficult to quantify how crazy that is.

  21. 21
    Patrick says:

    Today’s GOP is not racist,

    So it is not racist when the GOP claims Obama is not a citizen (without an ounce of evidence), that he is a Kenyan, and that he is a Muslim?

    I don’t recall EVER where the GOP has questioned the citizenship of any white person running for office before. Not racist — please!!!

  22. 22
    katie5 says:

    My mom is of the same generation. As progressive as they come. But when it comes to interracial marriage and biracial children, same reaction as Grandpappy Cohen. Have had many conversations with her, to no avail.

    Any suggestions?

  23. 23
    David Koch says:

    So when Dick Cohen sees Tiger Woods with his former wife or with his current girlfriend Lindsey Vonn, he gags?

  24. 24
    lamh36 says:

    @KG: the initial reports I believe is what the family was told by police. So the autopsy says that she was shot in the face and the shooter claims to have “accidentally” shot his gun, makes the family’s suspicions that enough wasn’t done by the police

  25. 25
    Aji says:

    @David Koch: Clarence Thomas is an Honorary White Dude. Cohen’s able to suppress that to a polite hiccup.

  26. 26

    @Poopyman: Anywhere but here would be fine. BTW, NY has elected its first Klingon

  27. 27
    lamh36 says:

    @lamh36: Also too, exactly from what i’ve read at first the police told the fam it was “self defense” and then they said the girls body was found away from the house, now they say that she was shot in the face and the shooter claims “accidentally” shooting her. That’s at least “manslaughter” aint’ it. You don’t draw your gun unless you plan to use it accidentally or not…smdh

  28. 28
    handsmile says:

    @ EJW:

    As it was but a mere five days ago that you posted about Richard Cohen (viz.,his belated discovery of the horrors of American slavery), are you truly confident that ““this is the last time we’ll talk about” him? I can well imagine that a future Cohen op-ed or two might inspire similar disbelief and indignation on your part.

    @kindness:

    With respect, this is a zombie lie, all the more frustrating given what Cohen has been typing for much of the past ten years. Duncan Black/Atrios named him 8th runner-up in his “Wanker of the Decade” parade and he figures prominently on Alex Pareene/Salon’s annual “Hack List.”

    Harold Meyerson and E.J Dionne are the two liberal op-ed columnists for the Washington Post. (imo Eugene Robinson does not merit such praise; many disagree). Meyerson writes about labor issues or the economic/social inequities endured by this country’s poor and working classes in just about every column. He is someone who deserves much wider recognition/attention, and is a writer you should seek out if unfamiliar.

  29. 29
    gnomedad says:

    Maybe Lee Greenwood can write “Ah’m Not Racist But” in time for the 2016 GOP convention.

  30. 30
    maya says:

    @David Koch: So when 19 year old Dicky Cohen saw Sammy Davis Jr. and his wife, May Britt, did he gag into his fraternity cap?

    And, ya know, they have gag-reflex medicines available now. Should be covered under Obamacare.

  31. 31
    LanceThruster says:

    Homer Stokes: [as Grand Kleagle at a KKK rally] Brothers! Oh, brothers! We have all gathered here, to preserve our hallowed culture and heritage! We aim to pull evil up by the root, before it chokes out the flower of our culture and heritage! And our women, let’s not forget those ladies, y’all. Looking to us for protection! From darkies, from Jews, from papists, and from all those smart-ass folks say we come descended from monkeys!

  32. 32
    LanceThruster says:

    @LanceThruster:

    That’s a lot of miscegenation for Mr. Cohen to worry about. I hope no one in his circle has married outside the tribe.

    xD

  33. 33
    Mnemosyne says:

    @David Koch:
    @maya:

    Of course not — Woods and Davis were screwing white women, which is the natural order of things and something Cohen can identify with. It’s the idea of having sex with a black woman that sets off Cohen’s gag reflex.

    But he’s not racist. Nope, no sirree.

  34. 34
    Mike G says:

    <blockquotePeople with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York — a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?)

    Why would any non-racist give a crap about the complexion of the wife of the mayor of NYC? Why would anyone not a terminal busybody give a fig about a politican’s family in the first place? Maybe we’d end up with better politicians, and certainly fewer stupid Republican douchebags, if people realized they’re voting for someone to fill an administrative leadership job, not selecting a drinking buddy or next door neighbor, and definitely not a daddy figure to worship.

  35. 35
    Violet says:

    @katie5: Ask her what her specific issues are with interracial marriage. What exactly is her problem with it. And don’t let her get away with “it’s just not right” or the equivalent. Have her tell you how it “just isn’t right.” Then refute that argument.

    Chances are it’s fear of change, possibly coupled with some misguided but well-meaning feelings that “those poor kids will have a hard lot in life.” Ask her to tell you if that sort of belief is true (President Obama is a good example of how it’s not.)

  36. 36
    MomSense says:

    Today’s GOP is not racist, as Harry Belafonte alleged about the tea party, but it is deeply troubled — about the expansion of government, about immigration, about secularism, about the mainstreaming of what used to be the avant-garde.

    See I think that today’s Republican party is deeply troubled about expansion of govt because that means giving free stuff like food and housing assistance to blah people with granite counter tops. And they hate immigration because they don’t want Mexicans stealing our jobs. Then there is the secularists who war on Christmas and take God out of the schools and are busy trying to force avant-garde gay marriages on everyone. At the heart of their troubled feelings on these issues is racism and prejudice.

  37. 37
    maya says:

    @Mnemosyne: OK, then I wonder if he ever sat through a movie because of a Roger Ebert ‘thumbs-up ‘without gagging or did he deliberately avoid them?

  38. 38
    shelly says:

    Son of a bitch!!! The MFer claiming he shot the young lady in the face, “accidentally”

    So the rationale for ‘stand your groung’ is that you fear for your life?
    A young black woman comes to your door. You’re scared. So,….don’t ANSWER THE FUCKING DOOR. Lock it and call the police.

  39. 39
    shelly says:

    (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?)

    There hasn’t been a lot of comment on this particular snide gem. What was the point of that? I guess to show more angst among the ‘conventional’ people.

  40. 40
    handsmile says:

    @MomSense:

    Avant-gardists such as myself think of gay marriage advocacy as mere child’s play.

    Clad in berets and chain-smoking Gitanes, we are busy trying to force Stan Brakhage, Elliott Carter, William Gass, David Hammons, Yvonne Rainer, and Richard Foreman on everyone.

    As the above-named are either dead or elders, our efforts to “mainstream” them would seem to be unfulfiled. No matter. Avant-Gardism cannot fail! Absinthe for all, mes amis!

  41. 41
    Petorado says:

    Turnabout is fair play …

    People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the columnist — a Jewish man writing for a WASP newspaper. (Should I mention that Cohen had an affair with a married woman?) This columnist represents the cultural changes that have enveloped parts — but not all — of America. To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.

  42. 42
    David Koch says:

    @shelly: Does Dick Cohen gag when he sees a black lesbian like Condi Rice in the White House?

  43. 43

    @shelly: Speaking as someone whose wife used to be opposite married, I can tell you that more than a few conventional thinkers are as bothered by the notion of human sexuality being complex as they are by a mixed race family. Being both myself, I’ve noticed that those two prejudices that are about s-e-x seem to ride together frequently.

    I’d suspect it’s less discussed in this forum because it’s unclear how to respond to that bit of gay-baiting without indulging its central premise, that how Mrs deB identified herself in 1978 is a BFD.

  44. 44
    katie5 says:

    @Violet: You’ve pegged it exactly. Her first response is “It’s not right.” Her second response is “Think of the children.” Can’t point out success stories, either. She’ll just rinse and repeat. And very difficult to get her to reflect. I need to find a values argument of some kind. Sigh.

  45. 45
    maya says:

    @shelly: That “used to be a lesbian” comment might have been a hat tip to Michele and Marcus Bachmann and all their wonderful work in curing gays of their gayness.

    However, since Michele is retiring it could be Dicky’s way of throwing his prestigious support to the newest fisherman in those same lucrative waters, Marco Rubio, and Marco’s good friend, Mat Staver. with his “Conversion Therapy” grift.

  46. 46
    handsmile says:

    @shelly:, @PhoenixRising:

    I’d like to think (and in fact do) that Cohen’s “snide gem” will get the attention it deserves, after the initial outcry ebbs over his “conventional” views on interracial marriage.

    fwiw, the following paragraphs were part of comments I submitted this afternoon on “The Democratic Cruz” and “Lying to the Races”threads here:

    “Moreover, the completely extraneous remark in his column about Chirlane McCray’s sexuality would suggest that it’s not just the blahs (and the white men who marry them) who cause the delicate Mr. Cohen to gag.”

    “My comment there in part was to suggest that Cohen was inadvertently exposing his own sexual queasiness/intolerance by tossing out that extraneous comment on deBlasio’s wife once identifying as a lesbian.”

    I hope to be able to read shortly that Cohen finds as “hurtful” being called a sexual bigot as he apparently does to the charge of being a racist.

  47. 47
    Suffern ACE says:

    @mere mortal: I’m never going to understand that criticism. Yeah, it may be odd to see a family in a politician’s ad in NYC, but it’s fairly standard in lots of places. 3 of the last 4 mayors had rather “unconventional” family lives. It could be 4 of the 4, since I don’t remember much about Dinkins. Koch was single, never married (tut tut), it became fairly obvious during his first term (and blatantly obvious in the second) that Guiliani and wife detested each other and were unhappily together. Bloomberg was divorced and living with a girl friend. Not that it matters for the job, but it was kind of nice to have a candidate who seemed to like his spouse and kids for a change.

  48. 48
    g says:

    You know what’s hateful? Being a teenaged kid and finding out that a national newspaper says you, your mom, and your sibling trigger the nation’s “gag reflex.” What creep Cohen is.

  49. 49
    Violet says:

    @katie5: You’re not dealing with someone who is being rational, so a values argument isn’t going to work. If you want to get to her, you need to help her address what her fear is and go from there. Any kind of rational argument–fairness, values, equality, etc.–is going to go exactly nowhere.

    She’s scared of something–change, the world passing her by, “her era” being gone, getting old–who knows. But she’s scared of that or those things. Helping her address those fears will help her deal with whatever her stumbling block is where interracial marriage is concerned.

  50. 50
    Yatsuno says:

    @handsmile: “You people and your labels!”

    /Captain Jack Harkness

  51. 51
    Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader says:

    @katie5: Poison her.

  52. 52
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @lamh36: And he has yet to be charged with anything. Looks like another Trayvon Martin situation unfortunately.

  53. 53
    Jebediah, RBG says:

    @g:
    Not that looks should matter, but the “gag” thing is even more extra silly cuz those kids are both gorgeous.

  54. 54

    @kindness: This is what ticks me off. If I try to talk about this with my tea party relatives I get, “Well, Richard Cohen is a liberal in a liberal newspaper.”

  55. 55
    MomSense says:

    Je prefere a fumer les gauloises mais jamais pendant que je bois la fee verte.

  56. 56
    mclaren says:

    @MomSense:

    Je préfère les chiens manteau avec de la crème glacée à la vanille mercredi.

  57. 57
    J.Ty says:

    @mclaren: I wish every Language capitalized all their Nouns like German. Makes Languages you only half-know a lot easier to read…

  58. 58
    Another Holocene Human says:

    Whoa, Elon, you are a very forgiving man–it took you until today to be done with Richard “Dicky” Cohen?

  59. 59
    Another Holocene Human says:

    @J.Ty: Ha, you wouldn’t say that if you’d seen machine translated German texts (news stories and the like) where they attempt to translate proper names into English….

  60. 60
    Another Holocene Human says:

    @scav: Okay, that was brilliant.

  61. 61
    Another Holocene Human says:

    @handsmile: How is Eugene Robinson not a liberal? OTH, EJ Dionne may be some sort of creeping red menace because he wants to tax the rich (hide the children) but he’s no progressive, siding with the Catholic Church on women’s access to reproductive care and mansplaining to everyone why they should too.

    Just. Shut. Up. Dionne.

  62. 62
    AxelFoley says:

    @kindness:

    And Richard is the assigned WaPo liberal don’t forget.

    I know, right? Ain’t that some shit?

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