In the last day or two, several people have questioned whether or not the infamous “Oreo Incident” occurred. To recap, it was reported that at several campaign events, people have thrown Oreos at Maryland’s Lt. Governor, George Steele, who is running for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate. (Earlier, I said he was running FOR Lt. Governor, not AS Lt. Governor — my apologies for the misstatement.) The reasoning behind this seems that he is what some people call an “Oreo” — “black on the outside, white on the inside.”
Now, let’s get one thing out of the way. If Mr. Steele (who has been the target of some of the dirtiest political tricks so far, including staffers of Senator Charles Schumer’s stealing his credit report in a fishing expedition) exaggerated or fabricated these incidents, he ought to withdraw from the race immediately. There’s no place for that in politics.
But let’s look at how people reacted to that story. I was outraged and appalled, but not overly surprised. But a lot of Democrats — including those holding public office — defended the tactic. In fact, Maryland State Senator Lisa Gladden, a black Democrat from Baltimore, openly stated that “Party trumps race, especially on the national level.” Others have called him an “Uncle Tom,” and one liberal blogger even posted a picture of Steele altered into a blackfaced minstrel, with the caption “I’s Simple Sambo and I’s running for the Big House.” (Gilliard has since removed the picture, but nothing — NOTHING ever truly disappears from the Internet (Just ask Markos “Daily Kos” Moulitsas about his gone-but-never-forgotten “Screw them” posting) — countless bloggers saved copies of it, and posted it on their own — see one example here.)
I think it’s incredibly enlightening that when the incident was first reported, there was very little skepticism from any side doubting it. And it confirms what I said earlier — the Democratic party seems to view blacks and other minorities as their “property,” and woe to any who stray too far from the plantation.