If writer Michael Tracey didn’t know Black people weren’t a monolith, he indeed learned today. Tracey, who is white, tried to be clever on Twitter by claiming that Walker speaks like “countless Black people” in the south in defense of Herschel Walker.
There is a brand of contrarian commentary claiming that the Georgia Republican Senate candidate is attacked for how he speaks, which is similar to “countless Blacks” in the South. Claiming that Black Southerners speak a certain way or have a narrowly defined type of speech is racist. Not to mention referring to southern Black people as simply “countless Blacks” erases the variety in experience across the region.
Tracey’s remark is an insult to the “countless” Black people around the region. People don’t even talk the same within the same state. Beyond the insult to people and how they speak, the issue with Walker isn’t his tone or cadence. It’s what he says.
Tracey should read more about Black people and speak less about the Black experience. He can start with Imani Perry’s awarding book “South to America: A Journey Below the Mason-Dixon to Understand the Soul of a Nation.”
Walker’s speech pattern isn’t the problem. It’s the content that raises eyebrows.
Tracey’s attempt to stick it to Walker objectors backfires as clumsy and racist. He can’t muster a defense of Walker and the ridiculous ish he says. As Georgia strategist Nse Ufot explained in an op-ed, the issues with Walker have little to do with his speech pattern.
Walker’s ignorance of policy issues and reliance on tired conservative buzzwords and talking points indicate that he believes Black voters will fall for anything. But Black folks in Georgia are smarter than that. We know what our communities need to thrive. We know how to address the deep inequalities that still exist as a direct result of chattel slavery. We need leaders who listen and apply what they have learned to advocacy and policy decisions.
As a would-be senator, Walker should at least be able to articulate a vision clearly and consistently. Not babble on about werewolves and vampires during a speech ahead of the Senate runoff.
Or complain about China stealing all the good air from America in objections to adopting environmental regulations. As reported by NewsOne, Walker went on a tirade against efforts to replenish trees in the nation’s forests.
People are well within their rights to criticize Walker for claiming that gas-guzzling cars released good emissions.
But instead of articulating apparent issues with spending and providing alternatives, Walker rambled about how the country doesn’t need more trees. I’m sure communities ravaged by wildfires beg to differ.
Michael Tracey is symbolic of white dude bro commentators
Tracey’s Twitter rambling is indicative of certain white commentators and writers who speak on other people’s experiences with authority but make a racist mockery instead.
Meanwhile, Warnock is sticking to the issues. Yes, he has that civil rights preacher cadence, but it is more about what he says than how he says it. And that’s the rub with Tracey’s ridiculous made-for-Twitter commentary. Warnock is getting his ground game going and trying to connect with voters ahead of the state’s Dec. 6 runoff election.
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