Wednesday, July 18, 2007

On Rudy Giuliani

Date Posted: July 09, 2007
If you're going to be judged by the company you keep, then Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani should inspect his inner circle a little more closely.
Giuliani, who is the only major presidential candidate whose campaign is being run entirely by whites as revealed in "Which Presidential Campaign Is Worst for Diversity?" in DiversityInc's June 2007 issue, is being slammed by the Democratic National Committee for his selection of Arthur Ravenel Jr., a former U.S. congressman who is the new co-chair of his campaign in South Carolina. According to the DNC, Ravenel has a long history of making insensitive, racist comments toward blacks, comments that Ravenel has dismissed as mere "slips."
Among Ravenel's various "slips" are:
Referring to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) as the "National Association for Retarded People" at a flag rally in 2000
As a member of Congress, he said a white committee chairman was "operating on black time"
Speaking in 1993 to the Council of Conservative Citizens (CofCC), the country's largest white nationalist organization—which, according to The Post and Courier, opposes "all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called affirmative action"
Missteps apparently occur frequently in the Ravenel family. Ravenel was only appointed co-chair after his son, South Carolina state treasurer and former state campaign chairman Thomas Ravenel, was suspended and later indicted on a federal cocaine charge. Giuliani appointed the elder Ravenel as co-chair six days after the indictment.
"This is a wonderful family that's contributed a great deal to South Carolina," Giuliani said after the younger Ravenel was indicted. "I think everyone knows that in families, no matter how big they are, tragedies happen, bad things happen. The most important thing is [if they] can they rally around and turn something bad into something good," Giuliani told MyrtleBeach Online.
Giuliani has yet to respond to the DNC's concern about Arthur Ravenel's comments, which include describing black lawmakers as "venomous" in an interview with The New York Times and proclaiming his support for secessionists delivered on the House floor on June 25, 1991.
"Giuliani doesn't understand that as president you need to represent all Americans and bring the country together," DNC spokesperson Karen Finney said in a statement.
The appointment of Ravenel gives more credence to those who accuse Giuliani of running a racially divisive office during his two terms as mayor of New York from 1994 to 2001. A recent article in the Washington Post, "Giuliani's Ties to Black New York Troubled," was painstakingly thorough in describing Giuliani's "toxic," often contentious, sometimes vindictive relationship with both black leadership in New York and black citizenry during frequent police shootings during his administration. According to the Post, when Giuliani won a second term in 1997 with more than 55 percent of the vote, he received just 20 percent of the black vote.

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