When Breitbart.Com broke the story of Barack Obama’s endorsement of the activism of Professor Derrick Bell, the President’s loyal defenders pulled out the Purell. Another of the administration’s formative influences needed the stench of antisemitism, racism, militancy, and Marxism sanitized.
Mediate’s Tommy Christopher decided to get his hands dirty:
The conservative Breitbart.com family of Big sites have lately devoted themselves to smearing the late Professor Derrick Bell as a “radical” who committed the unspeakable outrage of hugging our future president, releasing the “incriminating” footage of then-Harvard Law Review President Barack Obama introducing Prof. Bell at a pro-diversity protest.
Were the President’s new media critics putting forth “dishonest, context-free readings”? Were we transforming a kindly, “pro-diversity” scholar into a radical hatemonger just out of a blind rage for the President? Christopher lectured from his perch:
There are lots of reasons to be upset about things that Prof. Bell said. His chosen subject matter was controversial, and his theory was, necessarily, also controversial. That’s what a theory is. However, if you can’t even be honest about what he actually said, you give up your place in the conversation.
In analyzing Bell’s 1998 book, Afrolantica Legacies, I sought to neutralize the cherry picking charge with thoroughness and extended excerpts photographed directly from the book’s pages. Twenty-one blog posts explaining every essay in the book have been edited into a 9000-word guide featuring more than 30 images excerpting key passages. Throughout, I demonstrate how Bell’s ideas connect with current events and Obama administration policies.
And what I found is much stranger and more shocking than what’s been reported so far. So yes, let’s be honest about “what he actually said.” Let’s be honest about Bell’s promulgation of antisemitic conspiracy theories and let’s be honest about what it might have to do with Obama’s embrace of the Islamist, antisemitic conspiracy theorist Prime Minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who the President described as a “friend and colleague.We find ourselves in frequent agreement upon a wide range of issues.”
But does Mediate even know who Erdogan is? Does Christopher? Mediate has only mentioned him three times.