From the smell of the nascent General Election campaign, the Rove-inspired Repugs are trotting out the old reliables -- fear, personal attack, and deflection by deception. I suspect that this "Audacity of Desperation" (to coin a phrase) may become another irregular series here.
On of the latest is a riff by the evil queen of deflection by deception, Michelle Malkin. She all but labels the National Council of La Raza a bunch of racists. The NCLR is the largest, and arguably, one of the most respected Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organizations in the country.
In today's column, Malkin spews out "15 Lies About the NCLR". (Well, maybe it has a slightly different title, but my screen is already turning a brownish-yellow from going to that page and I don't want to turn back again.) Before turning to her bag of burning dogshit, she "explains" to us why the organization is borderline racist:
Only in America could critics of a group called "The Race" be labeled racists. Such is the triumph of left-wing identity chauvinists, whose aggressive activists and supine abettors have succeeded in redefining all opposition as "hate."
Both Barack Obama and John McCain will speak this week in San Diego at the annual conference of the National Council of La Raza, the Latino organization whose name is Spanish for, yes, "The Race."
Uh, no. Either Ms. Malkin is a lying moron, or believes her readers are gullible morons. (Either way, there be morons aplenty over there.) Anyway, as Ms. Malkin surely knows, the organization's name was drawn from the 1926 essay by Mexican philosopher José Vasconcelos called "La Raza Cosmica" ("The Cosmic Peoples"). In that essay, Vasconcelos proposed that the world was conglomerating into what he called a "fifth race" -- representing the commingled product of generations of inter-racial unions. He envisioned a resulting new world order, which he called Universópolis, from which a "new era of humanity" would emerge. Vasconcelos particularly referred to the Latino peoples of the Americas as being, not a single race, "but a conglomerate of races and types". Latinos, went his theory, carried the blood of most of the worlds peoples in their veins and were therefore particularly well-suited to participate in his imagined transcendence of the "old" order dominated by notions of race and nationality.
From this essay, and the concept of a peoples -- a humanity -- transcending tired notions of race by embodying the best of all of the mixed cultures which formed them over generations -- "La Raza" came to symbolize not a monolithic, separate race, but (as the NCLR site puts it) "the mixture inherent in the Hispanic people. This is an inclusive concept, meaning that Hispanics share with all other peoples of the world a common heritage and destiny."
But the facts are just too inconvenient to the desperate status that wingnuts like Malkin see when they look to November. So, instead of dealing with substantive issues, out of audacious desperation, they rely on the twisting of meaning to create something sounding racist out of a slogan drawn from a nearly 100-year old pamphlet trumpeting the coming displacement of racial purity with a humanity and order which moves beyond race itself.