by Chris Haire
The Washington Times' Joseph Curl wants us to believe that President Barack Obama is a racist and an anti-Semite.
That's the only conclusion I can make after reading Curl's strange piece on the late Adam Yauch. It's clearly the most overreaching, ad hominem-addled attack I've seen by a journalist in some time.
The Washington Times scribe writes:
This column is about politics. Today, it’s not. Still, there’s Watergate, Paul Revere, Edward R. Murrow, fighting for your right, so, kinda still.
Adam Nathaniel Yauch died Friday. If you’re age 16-66 — maybe 106 — you know him as MCA, one-third of the Beastie Boys. He was 47. Way too young. But gone.
Now, half-white Barack Obama (exactly my age) didn’t say a word, even though he was talking to college kids that day, but make no mistake, MCA was no Jay-Z or Kanye West. This guy was the real deal, groundbreaker, up from his bootstraps, Brooklyn boy made good. Funny the “coolest president ever” doesn’t say a word about the passing of MCA. Weird and kinda sad, actually.
“Yauch was born an only child in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Frances, a social worker, and Noel Yauch, a painter and architect,” Wikipedia says. “His father was Catholic and his mother was Jewish.” Kinda like Barack, all over the place, half this, half that, and a tough life ahead from the outset. But nothing from the first half-white, half-black president (MSM has made him black — he’s not; he’s half-and-half. No, Trayvon Martin wouldn’t have looked like his son.)
The president took time from his busy schedule to comment on the passing of black musicians. When Whitney Houston, a longtime crack addict, died this year, the White House put out a statement. “I know that [Mr. Obama‘s] thoughts and prayers are with her family, especially her daughter,” press secretary Jay Carney said. “It’s a tragedy to lose somebody so talented at such a young age.”
And when accused pedophile and drug addict Michael Jackson died in 2009, the White House weighed in with the president’s thoughts. “He said to me that obviously, Michael Jackson was a spectacular performer, a music icon,” spokesman Robert Gibbs said. “And his condolences went out to the Jackson family and to fans that mourned his loss.”
Mr. Obama is said to have 2,000 songs on his iPod, but he’s never mentioned the Beastie Boys. Too bad. He could learn so much from them. Still can.
Actually, I think Curl could learn a thing or two from Yauch and his fellow Beastie Boys. Unlike our pal Joey, the Beasties did not believe in segregating white culture and black culture. They believed the two were one and the same. And because of their efforts and the efforts of many others — like Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin — hip hop became the dominant musical artform of the past 20 years.
They saw what others perceived to be racial barriers and they broke through them. And in doing so, they crafted one pop-culture classic after another — from the frat-boy rap of Licensed to Ill to the acid-head funk of Paul's Boutique to the genre-destroying Check Your Head. And personally, my life has been a helluva lot better because of it. I imagine that this applies to many of you as well.
Surprisingly, Curl has his defenders. And in the case of the JerseyNut, a race-baiter who's willing to one-up the Washington Times' columnist:
No doubt Obama, seething with racial and ethnic rage, sees the Beasties as usurpers of what should be an exclusively "black" form of music, despite the fact that not only didn't they ride in on the backs of other established acts, they actually blew the doors wide open for both their predecessors and their musical children
But our president is a simple man, of little intellectual nuance. He sees "rap", "white", and "Jews" all together in a sentence, and immediately thinks "colonial imperialism"!
For a second there, I thought I was reading bit of satire, but then I released that sadly I wasn't.
Which is why I think that Curl and his fans would be wise to listen to the Beastie Boys themselves and take their words to heart. One line off of Paul's Boutique's "Dropping Names" immediately comes to mind: "If your world was all black or if your world was all white, you wouldn't get much color out of life now right."
No, you wouldn't. But if it was up to folks like Joseph Curl, who view the world in strictly black-and-white terms, then there never would've been a band like the Beastie Boys, we never would've seen a Michael Jordan on the basketball court, and we'd still be eating at separate lunch counters.