Look, after the awkward exchange between Charlamagne tha God and Presidential contender Joe Biden Friday — and the weird defenses from lefty Twitter of what was ultimately just a painful, boneheaded gaffe by a guy who arguably simply believes Democrats are entitled to African-American votes — it would be easy to paint Biden with the racist brush and delight in the schadenfreude.
But honestly, especially after Biden’s apology, it all seems a little sad and I, personally, take no joy in kicking an old elitist (I don’t think he’s a dark-hearted racist) for being what he’s always been: a bit spoiled and cocksure even when the circumstances don’t allow for that. And anyone that thinks Biden and CTG were connecting on some fundamental level, and that Biden has some insight that automatically gives him the black vote, is more confused than Biden himself.
He doesn’t, and that exchange proved it.
Biden’s gaffe does speak to something important in our political culture, however, that I think is worth pointing out. And that is that things are shifting dramatically in the modern world and the old constituencies are no longer in play. African-Americans are no longer Democrats by default, and Biden’s assertion that they are shows how out of touch he — and his party — are with the shifting tides of national politics.
What will be interesting to watch is what Biden does with this new information that was apparently unknown to him before his interview Friday morning.
And, for the record, I don’t think comparing Biden with Trump on their respective records on the black community is in any way meaningful here. Because I actually think Biden loses that fight in some regards, and Trump in others (although Trump has the better claim of success if we’re being honest, for a lot of different reasons).
Nor do I think Biden’s agitated response — he’s actually a pretty touchy guy despite the “Old Uncle Joe” narrative carefully crafted around him — can be compared to anything Trump does because Biden is born of the old elitist school and Trump strikes me as more of a guy who will get down in the mud with you. They fight and communicate in very different ways and elitism is generally not a popular tactic when trying to win the hearts and minds of a community of people who still feel the sting of oppression.
So, I’m inclined to give Biden a break here to an extent and acknowledge how out of touch and foolish he is without declaring him a hater. I know he wouldn’t afford the same circumspection to a political enemy of his. But I’m operating under the assumption that there’s still a high ground to take.
I talk about all that on the show today. And I review and interesting series called, “Trial By Media” (trailer below) currently showing on Netflix. There’s also a little in there about this, which still just blows me away.