The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008

Archives

Washington Life

A 'Raccoon Update' from the White House

By Michael D. Shear
The raccoons are still at large!

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said today that there have been no masked critters caught on the White House lawn today.

The raccoon issue exploded onto the political radar on Thursday with an exclusive Washington Post report that a single large raccoon and several medium-sized ones were roaming the grounds around the mansion and West Wing.

Here is the exchange with Gibbs at today's briefing:

QUESTION: It's Friday. Let's ask about the raccoons. Have you found the raccoons?

GIBBS: You know, I -- I should have Bill do this, because he's -- he's our chief deputy spokesperson for wildlife.

Apparently -- actually -- actually -- actually, right before we came out here, Bill got on a phone in my office and asked for -- literally asked for a raccoon update. We...

There are a few that roam in my backyard, so I don't -- I don't have any particular tips.

GIBBS: And no -- no raccoons that I know of have been caught or disbursed into other places in Washington.

Posted at 3:53 PM ET on Feb 6, 2009  | Category:  Washington Life
Share This: Technorati talk bubble Technorati | Tag in Del.icio.us | Digg This
Previous: Biden Thanks House Democrats for Tough Votes on Stimulus Bill | Next: Stem Cell Advocates Encouraged by Obama Statement


Add 44 to Your Site
Be the first to know when there's a new installment of The Trail. This widget is easy to add to your Web site, and it will update every time there's a new entry on The Trail.
Get This Widget >>


Comments

Please email us to report offensive comments.



Have to admit the South is pretty creative to come up with so many different words to demean a person. "Coon" has nothing to do with raccoons however, except being the last four letters of their name. "Coon" used in reference to a Black person is "a derivative of the term baracoons (a cage), where they used to place Africans, who were waiting to be sent to America to be slaves."
This is according to the online urban dictionary. - for those of use not raised with a course in Southern linguistics. Looking up the term "coon" on Google largely bypasses the masked mammal and focuses instead on two legged humans. Are people so oversensitized that one can no longer refer to a "coon skin hat" of Daniel Boone, or hunting with "Coon Hounds?" Seems one should read the full story before passing judgement on a story about a coon problem at the Whitehouse!
To judge anyone and everyone who used the term "coon" a racist is just as narrow-minded as those who came up with and use the term in an offensive manner. I am sure that masked mammal takes just as much offense when confusion results and people associate their name with a type of person they consider obnoxious.

Posted by: Wohlachee | February 9, 2009 6:18 PM

To those of you in this string who suspect racist undercurrents/motives ...
Knock it off!
The story really is about racoons spotted on White House grounds.

Posted by: johnmalone | February 9, 2009 11:15 AM

LOL! :-D

"Over the Hedge", could not have had a better News story at this point!

Any Squirrels mixed in?

Posted by: SAINT---The | February 7, 2009 3:43 PM

This whole racoon thing is disgusting...PLEASE CHECK the racially loaded word coon...and then think about it before printing anymore of this sort of talk...how awful, how low and how shameful....

Posted by: fadelff | February 7, 2009 2:34 PM

Geez, I've watched Gibbs a few times and he seems overwhelmed with crafting statements on the fly that conformed to Obama policy. I initially cut him some slack since it has got to be a tough job. But come on, surely he should be able to speak coherently about raccoons.

Posted by: mirebay | February 7, 2009 11:24 AM

Who let the raccoons out? Who? Who? Who?
Why, it's Michael D. Shear, that sly dog.
I can't wait to see the innuendos six months down the road. This is nothing.

Posted by: seemstome | February 7, 2009 10:23 AM

I believe this article has a hidden agenda and Mr. Michael D. Shear understands. In the future, I would encourage historical reviews of racial terms used to describe Blacks. The term “coon,” (short for raccoon) is definitely offensive because of such use. As an Army veteran, I am hurt by this article and mainly because African American has contributed so much to society and interesting how we are repeatedly belittled.

Posted by: equalrightsspeaks | February 7, 2009 9:10 AM

This just seemed a silly story to me. I would say I can't believe the ugly and stupid comments here but then I've seen stupid, racist comments here in the past. The issue with WAPO comments is, that without a moderator, comments are allowed here that would be removed from other sites.

Posted by: AndrearKline | February 7, 2009 8:06 AM

Maybe they're just lost. They are probably looking for the IRS so they can pay their taxes.

Posted by: supasecretary | February 7, 2009 7:39 AM

Maybe they are just trying to pay their taxes. LOL No, they are Cheney's predicted evil terrorists making another attempt on us infidels. Or maybe they's just some of our disquised CIA operatives (who shall be nameless) returning with a classified update on Bin Laden's current location. Hah! Too many jokes come to mind to write here! LOL

Posted by: supasecretary | February 7, 2009 6:46 AM

Hey you media numsculls, READ THIS. Goodness gracious. I thought the media elite were more educated than this....

http://www.ferris.edu/JIMCROW/coon/

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=coon

http://parlorsongs.com/insearch/coonsongs/coonsongs.php


Those who forget history are prone to repeat it.

Posted by: changingfaces | February 7, 2009 5:20 AM

It is appalling to see the kind of taseless reactions this article has produced and clearly they should be removed.

Posted by: elizabeth6 | February 7, 2009 2:53 AM

When the masked raiders are finally caught, White House interrogators should give those varmints a good grilling.

See http://notionscapital.wordpress.com/2009/02/05/masked-raiders-infiltrate-white-house/

Posted by: MikeLicht | February 7, 2009 2:35 AM

Posted by: nodebris | February 6, 2009 10:31 PM
Wow, who knew crackers were such fans of the Washington Post? A previously unexplored market, perhaps.

-------------------
JakeD invited all his friends

Posted by: kashabear | February 6, 2009 11:40 PM

I live in New York and heard about this story this morning on the Tom Joyner Morning Show (TJMS),(I listen online). As an African-American, I am in shock that Mr. Michael Shear had the audacity to write this story within 2 weeks into Barak's presidency. I would NOT have had an issue with this story if it was written during the time that another president, an Anglo Saxon, was in office. It is clear that Mr. Shear's story is filled with blatant racial undertones! A senior level individual from the Washington Post should apologize for allowing such a story to be printed. I expect journalism that is objective and 'newsworthy' - not riddled with racial epithets!

Posted by: VEGAN | February 6, 2009 11:36 PM

Trained Raccoons with listening devices working for the Republicans is more like it.

Posted by: blakesouthwood | February 6, 2009 11:13 PM

These things are a delicacy in Arkansas, it's good to see this family survived the Clinton years and life is returning to normal on the White House grounds.

Posted by: slim2 | February 6, 2009 10:58 PM

Wow, who knew crackers were such fans of the Washington Post? A previously unexplored market, perhaps.

Posted by: nodebris | February 6, 2009 10:31 PM

Some of the ignorant comments listed above clearly depict how much further we are away from the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.. Obama's victory was definitely a starting point. Watch this man exceed the expectations of his critics 3 years from now.

Posted by: mbriscoe4 | February 6, 2009 9:16 PM

Maybe the Secret Service spotted them and they spotted little Malia and Sashawan and thought "coons".

Posted by: NadeemZacharia | February 6, 2009 6:32 PM

Look in the Oval Office - they will find a big and extremely ugly one.

Posted by: hclark1 | February 6, 2009 6:32 PM

______________

Martial:

The article itself is in no way racist; the above two comments might be interpreted as such. What do the authors of these comments mean?

Posted by: Martial | February 6, 2009 8:20 PM

Raccoons love peanuts. The White House should leave out a box of peanuts and will get not only them, but squirrels and birds for the girls.

Posted by: jhough1 | February 6, 2009 8:19 PM

If this is racist, then the story of Jimmy Carter and the rabbit was an assertion that President Carter had a heroin addiction.

Posted by: Martial | February 6, 2009 8:02 PM

The little beasts are very smart. In a city where I lived, officials moved a family of five fifty miles away from their inappropriate domicile. The beasts returned a week later with friends.

Posted by: Martial | February 6, 2009 7:54 PM

You mean "Rosebud" and "Radiance"?

Posted by: JakeD | February 6, 2009 6:56 PM

Maybe the Secret Service spotted them and they spotted little Malia and Sashawan and thought "coons".

Posted by: NadeemZacharia | February 6, 2009 6:32 PM

Look in the Oval Office - they will find a big and extremely ugly one.

Posted by: hclark1 | February 6, 2009 6:32 PM

Who cares about the 'coons?!

WHITE HOUSE IN THE BEAM PATH OF EMF...
...GIVING POTUS HEADACHES AND MOOD CHANGES?

(to fix corrupted link for related story:)

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/domestic-torture-radiation-weaponry-americas-horrific-shame

Posted by: JakeD | February 6, 2009 6:23 PM

I am so bitter and angry that people are trying to make this seem like something that is cute. Anyone who reads firedoglake and is secure in their gender identity -- like me -- is able to see this is an Rovian ploy to bring racial discourse into President Obama's glowing public persona.

Raccoons, White House, Barack Obama ...get it??


Posted by: twin_peaks_nikki | February 6, 2009 4:28 PM


Have you considered medication. Your off the grid. The only thing RACIST here is you dumb azz.

Posted by: askgees | February 6, 2009 5:48 PM

I think it's cute that some people are bitter and angry about this.

Posted by: ComfortablyDumb | February 6, 2009 5:39 PM

The raccoons are too late. There aren't any crackers at the White House now.

Posted by: spidey103 | February 6, 2009 5:17 PM

I am so bitter and angry that people are trying to make this seem like something that is cute. Anyone who reads firedoglake and is secure in their gender identity -- like me -- is able to see this is an Rovian ploy to bring racial discourse into President Obama's glowing public persona.

Raccoons, White House, Barack Obama ...get it??

Posted by: twin_peaks_nikki | February 6, 2009 4:28 PM

edbyronadams, so how's your mother, I mean your sister, no maybe I do mean your mother?

Posted by: csdiego | February 6, 2009 4:14 PM

I think they're going to board Marine One when it heads to Camp David this weekend.

Posted by: justhere | February 6, 2009 4:10 PM

It's a good thing that those domestic terrorists George Simpleton Bush and Dick-Head Cheney are not in charge. They would probably water-board the racoons to find out what they know.

Posted by: xconservative | February 6, 2009 4:10 PM

Considering the common shortened name for racoons, this is a story I would avoid for this White House.

Posted by: edbyronadams | February 6, 2009 4:09 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 

© 2009 The Washington Post Company