John McCain or Tiger Woods?

The occasion of Tiger Woods’ white-knuckled victory at the U.S. Open (he’s now a ridiculous 11-1 in playoff rounds) provides a tidy opportunity to revisit this bit of weirdness:

“You can have your Tiger Woods; we’ve got Senator McCain.”

Olberman and TPM, among others, found something racialist about the impossibly awkward introduction shown above, which comes to us courtesy of David Bellavia, co-founder of Vets for Freedom.

Certainly that’s possible, but I’m generally a “benefit of the doubt” sort of guy. At they very least, it was a dumb thing to say, particularly when McCain’s opponent in the general is a black man. Laying aside racialist inferences, it’s nice to know that John McCain and Tiger Woods, two entities as unrelated as oatmeal and carburetors, constitute some sort of Boolean, either-or dilemma. Stanford-educated uber-golfer or seasoned war hero/statesman? You can’t have both, America.

Then again, maybe I need to be more cynical. Perhaps the talking point really was, “McCain yes! Assimilated, non-threatening black guys no!”

In any event, some unsolicited advice for Mr. Bellavia: you might want to enlist another pair of eyes the next time you take up speech writing.

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