During last night’s GOP debate as soon as Rick Perry called Herman Cain “brother,” I knew the MSM would jump on the race-baiting bandwagon and attempt to twist an obvious term of affection into something sinister. Some of it is just cultural ignorance on the MSM’s part. The use of “brother” is used primarily in that part of the country the MSM finds icky … the South.
So, just what did Perry mean when he called Cain “brother,” a term he didn’t use with anyone else on stage (in fact, Perry called Romney “sir” three times, even as Perry was being attacked and on the attack. His disdain was apparent with each “sir.”).
Was Perry channeling scholar Cornel West or even the late wrestler Randy Savage, both known for referring to everyone as brother? Or was Perry attempting a do-over of sorts on matters of race? (Remember that it was Cain and Cain alone who spoke out against the hunting camp incident, though the later backpedaled.) …
Gwen Ifill tweeted this: “Why is @GovernorPerry calling @THEHermanCain brother? Are they related? #scandal”
And speaking on MSNBC today, political analyst and strategist Karen Finney remarked that she was slightly bothered by Perry’s use of the term “brother” to refer to Cain. She later e-mailed me the phrase simply “hit my ear the wrong way.”
From the unlikeliest of sources, however, this bubbling, ridiculous, and predictable narrative might’ve just been stopped in its tracks:
Andrea Mitchell’s attempt to imply Rick Perry was being racially insensitive, for calling fellow GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain “brother,” during Tuesday’s Republican debate, was so lame even her NBC colleague Chuck Todd wasn’t buying it. Mitchell, on Wednesday’s edition of MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports, dredged up the N-Head controversy on Perry as she scolded: “If I were Rick Perry and had that sign or the, the stone that used to be on that, that property I’m not sure I would’ve gone with the ‘brother’ stuff, over and over again.”
Todd then tried to reign in his NBC colleague as he admonished: “Just very quickly on the ‘brother’ thing. That’s a Southern cultural thing,” and reminded her that their “late friend Mr. [Tim] Russert” was also fond of using that term in a friendly way, “He loved to refer to all of us as brother.” Even the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza came to Perry’s defense as he agreed with Todd and offered: “It sounded to me more like Hulk Hogan saying, ‘brother.'”
Memo to Andrea Mitchell: “Boy” would be wrong. “Brother” is just another word for “friend” among we bitter clinging inbreeders.