Your Regular Reminder That Kathleen Parker Is Still As Bigoted As Ever

The Washington Post‘s Kathleen Parker thinks Democrats should dump Kamala Harris. That’s a fairly common pundit opinion, but most anti-Harris pundits don’t Go There. Parker decides to Go There:

The Democratic Party’s indulgence of identity politics has proved successful in building a diverse organization, but its strategy of courting (and pandering to) minority voters is the road to ruin….

The Kamala conundrum comes down to this: She was picked because she was Black and female, a combo tantamount to job security. Now that she has become a burden to the Democratic ticket, Biden can’t fire her. He can’t risk alienating his base. Full stop.

The “and female” part of “She was picked because she was Black and female” conceals Parker’s real point here, which is to attack the Democratic Party for “its strategy of courting (and pandering to) minority voters” (women aren’t a minority group). Harris was picked for her race, Parker says, and you can’t fire Those People, amirite?

But we shouldn’t be surprised at this. Remember what Parker wrote about Barack Obama in 2008:

“A full-blooded American.”

That’s how 24-year-old Josh Fry of West Virginia described his preference for John McCain over Barack Obama. His feelings aren’t racist, he explained. He would just be more comfortable with “someone who is a full-blooded American as president.”

… Full-bloodedness is an old coin that’s gaining currency in the new American realm. Meaning: Politics may no longer be so much about race and gender as about heritage, core values, and made-in-America. Just as we once and still have a cultural divide in this country, we now have a patriot divide.

Who “gets” America? And who doesn’t?

… It’s about blood equity, heritage and commitment to hard-won American values. And roots.

Some run deeper than others and therein lies the truth of Josh Fry’s political sense. In a country that is rapidly changing demographically — and where new neighbors may have arrived last year, not last century — there is a very real sense that once-upon-a-time America is getting lost in the dash to diversity.

(That last sentence especially infuriates me. Parker seems to accept immigrant group who arrived here “last century” — but a century ago, those immigrants were the new Americans … and Parker would have thought they weren’t “full-blooded Americans.” They include my ancestors, who came to this country from Italy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Parker would consider me a real American, but I don’t want her to feel that way about me when she obviously despises the current newcomers just the way so many Americans despised people like my grandparents and great-grandparents. And I’m not sure what this has to do with the native-born Barack Obama in any case.)

A couple of years later, in 2010, we found out that certain other Americans aren’t fully American to Parker:

Elena Kagan is miles away from mainstream America

The magnificent author and son of the Great Santini, Pat Conroy, began “The Prince of Tides” with these words: “My wound is geography. It is also my anchorage, my port of call.”

… What is Kagan’s geography? What is her anchorage, her port of call?

Coincidentally, she shares the same home town as the other two women on the court. Assuming Kagan is confirmed, all three women will hail from New York. Kagan grew up on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Sonia Sotomayor is from the Bronx and Ruth Bader Ginsburg is from Brooklyn.

If diversity on the court is our goal, we may be missing a region or two.

These facts ultimately may be more anecdotally interesting than significant in terms of how a justice might perform. Then again, spending one’s formative years walking past the infamously crime-riddled Murder Hotel en route to school, as Kagan did — and, say, walking past the First Baptist Church to ballet class — are not the same cultural marinade.

The latter hypothetical is proffered only for the sake of contrast and metaphor. It seems remote to unlikely that a woman whose life has involved Baptist churches and ballet slippers would find herself on a track to today’s Supreme Court….

These Catholics and Jews … they’re perfectly nice people, don’t get me wrong, but we’re overrun with them! (And I would remind Parker that the person most responsible for packing the Supreme Court with Catholics is the Republican Party’s judicial commissar, Leonard Leo. When he picked a woman for Donald Trump, it was Amy Coney Barrett, who’s everything Parker wants except Catholic instead of Baptist.)

This is the genteel, moonlight-and-magnolias version of the Great Replacement Theory. At times Parker tried to suppress this side of herself, but it’s always an inch below the surface, and it just rose up again.

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