The Corner

Let Me Say This About That*

I have had a trickle of e-mails attempting to chastise me for “making fun of

the way black people speak” by having the Rev. Al Sharpton say “I’s” for

“I’m.” Same thing last week, when I had him saying “ax” for “ask.”

To all these humorless nitwits I say: “Nuts!” What do you mean, “the way

black people speak”? Bill Cosby doesn’t speak like that. Jesse Jackson

doesn’t speak like that. Condoleeza Rice doesn’t speak like that. I’ll bet

Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois didn’t speak like

that. Among other black people who did not / do not speak like that: The

Rev. Martin Luther King, Ralph Abernathy, Colin Powell, Harry Belafonte,

Arthur Ashe, Lena Horne, Clarence Thomas, Paul Robeson,…

I know you cretins can’t read too fast, so I’ll type this out real slow.

Ready? Here goes: I WASN’T MAKING FUN OF THE WAY BLACK PEOPLE SPEAK, I WAS

MAKING FUN OF THE WAY AL SHARPTON SPEAKS.

It is, of course, difficult, if not impossible, for patronizing liberal

nail-biters of your stripe to conceive that black people differ from each

other in any way at all, and to be filled with baffled outrage when they do.

None the less, I can inform you with certainty that black people have lots

of different ways of speaking. Al Sharpton chooses to speak like Stepin

Fetchit’s dumber brother. That’s his right. My right is to poke fun at him

for it.

Mocking the speech mannerisms of presidential candidates is a fine old

American tradition. I bet Rick Brookhiser can adduce examples all the way

back to the Founding Fathers. I shall continue to do this, with Sharpton

and any other candidates whose diction strikes me as mockable. And all you

patronizing PC-niks can go boil your silly heads. Got that?

*For those too young to remember, this was a characteristic JFK-ism when he

was responding to questions.

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