Tuesday, December 10, 2002

Trent Lott, Who me, a Racist?

There seems to be quite a media storm brewing, finally, over comments made by our country's Republican Majority Leader, Trent Lott at a party honoring, if you can, Strom Thurmond on the hundredth anniversary of the day of his birth (thanks for the phraseology anand).

At a party celebrating retiring Sen. Thurmond's 100th birthday, attended by hundreds of Thurmond's family members and friends from South Carolina, Senate colleagues and members of the Supreme Court, Lott said that when Thurmond ran for president on a states' rights, anti-integration ticket in 1948, Mississippi voted for him.

"We're proud of it," Lott said to applause. "And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems over all these years, either."

Now, I am not too sure what he meant by that, but it seems like he feels integration is bad? Initially, as stated in the Washington Post, Lott's office played down the significance of the senator's remarks. Spokesman Ron Bonjean issued a two-sentence statement: "Senator Lott's remarks were intended to pay tribute to a remarkable man who led a remarkable life. To read anything more into these comments is wrong."

But, it seems Lott has offerred a more sincere apology. Accoring to ABCnews Lott today said, "A poor choice of words conveyed to some the impression that I embraced the discarded policies of the past," Lott said in a statement issued Monday night. "Nothing could be further from the truth, and I apologize to anyone who was offended by my statement."

Lott's statement came "out of personal concern for the misunderstanding," his spokesman, Ron Bonjean, said. I think it had more to do with the potential political fallout then any concern. I think an apology is easier than facing censure.

Also, here is nice editorial from the Washington Post on the state on this and Mary Landrieu's election.


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