Jimmy Carter On Barack Obama And Race

Former President Jimmy Carter jumped into the debate about whether the opposition to President Obama is, in part, due to racism with a fervent “yes.” Naturally, the discussion is all about whether or not this is good politics. (Ben Smith says it’s terrible for the White House and Mickey Kaus asks, “Remember the Carter era of smug moralizing? Anyone want to go back to that?” It’s a good question! Do you remember the Carter era of smug moralizing?) And really, what was Carter thinking? Here’s my guess: Maybe he was thinking that some of the opposition to President Obama is due to racism. Maybe he felt that, as a former President and a lifelong resident of the South, he had an obligation to speak out against it rather than to let it remain an ugly truth which we refuse to acknowledge because we still have difficulty talking about race in this country. But what do I know? Maybe he just wanted to be on TV.