Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Uncle Tomming

This is an unpublished letter to the editor Washington Times in response to a column by Gregory Kane bashing Jalen Rose for use of the epithet "Uncle Tom":
Re: “So that’s the definition of ‘Uncle Tom’”, March 28th.

Gregory Kane claims that “[Jalen] Rose, by his statement, shows there is no further evidence needed to prove that black Americans have overused, misused and abused the term ‘Uncle Tom.’ The term used to mean a black person who was exceedingly servile, obsequious and submissive to whites.” As his is wont, Kane overstates the case. Rose, in a voicemail following the documentary, made it clear that the statement was in the context of how he felt as a nineteen year old: “I know a lot of people are trying to circumvent a great documentary that was two hours of quality content and paraphrase a statement that I made and look at the headline but not read the story. That’s basically when I talked about my recruiting as a high school student as it related to Duke. I just wanted to make sure that I verify how I felt about that. I was clearly talking about a framework from 1991 to 1993, not about 2011.” Given Kane’s musings on racial matters, I believe that there is an autobiographical element to his noisy protest, for I suspect he has found himself more than once on the wrong end of the epithet. To paraphrase the Bard, Kane “doth protest too much.”

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Alexandria, VA, United States
'To see what is in front of one's nose requires a constant struggle." - George Orwell