The most surprising reaction to President Obama’s State of the Union Speech came from MSNBC’s Chris Matthews who said, “I forgot that he was black tonight for an hour.” In other breaking news, President Lincoln has freed the slaves.
Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:
Matthews said, “I was trying to think about who he was tonight, and it’s interesting, he is post racial by all appearances. You know, I forgot he was black tonight for an hour. You know, he’s gone a long way to become a leader of this country and passed so much history in a year or two. I mean, it’s something we don’t even think about. I said wait a minute he is an African-America guy in front of a bunch of white people, and there he is the President of the United States.”
Of course this is not Chris’s first flirtation with Obama’s race.
Here is Matthews not surprised that Obama is good at basketball and asking if the future president can appeal to white people:
Once is a mistake, but three times is a trend. Talk about faint praise, Obama made Matthews forget that he was black. You know, because being a black president is such a problem. Chris Matthews needs to realize that most people got past the novelty of Obama’s election a year ago.
I don’t why he is still hung up on the president’s race. The fact that he sees every move Obama makes through race colored glasses has gotten very tiresome. The State of the Union speech had nothing to do with race, but yet somehow this was one of Chris Matthews’ leading points.
Chris, the Civil War is over. The slaves have been freed. Racial problems still exist in America, but progress will continue to be slow if people like you insist on seeing everything through the prism of race. Real progress will come when people see Barack Obama not as a black president, but simply as a president.
Update: Matthews went to Rachel Maddow’s show and clarified his remarks: