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Posted at 7:00 PM ET, 09/23/2010

Who's stoking racial fires?

By washingtonpost.com editors

By Wendy Jacobson,
Washington

Courtland Milloy [“It’s well before Halloween, but a caldron of hatred is brewing in D.C.,” Metro, Sept. 22] has a lot of nerve. The racist and ugly comments coming into The Post about Vincent C. Gray’s victory in the Sept. 14 primary election are hideous and indefensible. But given that Mr. Milloy spewed some pretty heavy bile of his own over the past month, his surprise about these comments is a bit hard to take.

On Sept. 16, he wrote, “people who need more time to gloat and wave their fists, take it.” He called Fenty supporters “myopic little twits.” He spent a couple of columns before that boiling the complexities of school reform down to a simple formula of white people stepping on the necks of black people. After fanning the flames, can he really be shocked by the fire?

If Mr. Milloy’s goal is to keep the “caldron of hatred” burning in the District, he’s on the right path. It would be much better for all of us, though, if he used his bully pulpit for the common good instead.



By washingtonpost.com editors  | September 23, 2010; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  D.C., D.C. politics, Fenty, Mayor Fenty, Vincent Gray, education, media, race, schools  
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Comments

Well said.

Posted by: jckdoors | September 24, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I would have bought in to Milloy's position if he had been even handed at looking at the comments, but it was clear that he only wanted to find certain comments. He turned a blind eye or maybe it is his own position to the very racist comments that many people had towards Koreans. I was sick to my stomach when I read so many that just urged white or asian voters to leave.

Posted by: Brooklander | September 24, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Milloy wallows in opprobrium. It's his chosen sty.

Posted by: confounded | September 24, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

No one has had an even handed review of the race. Fenty and Gray supporters are equally rabid and vicious.

My problem isn't Mr. Milloy's articles. He has always aired his opinions freely. I may not agree with all of his opinions, but they do have merit.

In this case he is talking about the people who have coldly and cruelly called people who voted for Gray idiots, unintelligent, and stupid. They then describe the children in DC public schools as idiots with parents too stupid to know better.

These people seem to equate poverty with a child’s intelligence and their potential. When the person said Michelle Rhee would now be free to go to one of the more prestigious boarding schools and teach children who have an IQ of 100 was basically saying that all the children in DC public schools didn’t have an IQ higher than 99. He told everyone they were stupid.

That kind of bilious rhetoric fans a bonfire that threatens to get out of control. Maybe those people who wrote those comments are white, maybe they aren’t. It doesn’t matter because those comments showed bigoted thinking about poor Black children who live in this city. Those people lack compassion and empathy. That’s a frightening thing.

I’ve met people like that. They will do anything to tear down a child and make sure they never have any measure of success. That is called emotional abuse.

Mr. Milloy does have his views, and those views are shared by a large majority of the city. The residents are angry at the way Fenty has led our city. They are angry that his arrogance and indifference has put us in this economic mess. That’s the real story and that is the simple truth. District residents are tired of being told they aren’t worthy to have anything, and are too stupid to know it. That’s what the anger is about.

Posted by: nailahjordan | September 25, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Milloy has always been consistent in his views regarding race and those who have read him over the years are not surprised at his blatant bias. As far as the citizens of DC, they continue to elect leaders such as Marion Barry. Nothing more need be said.

Posted by: dmt3 | September 26, 2010 7:15 AM | Report abuse

Milloy is not alone at the Post in stoking the flames to get people to click on his pieces. Craig, Turque and others have been equally self-serving by simply throwing out sensational writings just to get people to read. The writers of the Post are often guilty of this these days because with the online version, hits and comments to their writings are unfortunately metrics their bosses can use. Motives aside, Milloy was equally racist and inflammatory in his writings, and ironically felt insulted by racist comments by some people. Of course he paints a broad stroke by insinuating that Fenty or white voters generally shared the racist views. Of course he purposely left out the fact that there were thousands of non-racist comments or that there were plenty of racist comments by Gray or black voters. Milloy had no interest in sharing a objective observation-his goal was to get more comments and hits.

Posted by: minhle1 | September 26, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

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