Leggo my ego!

By ADAM REILLY  |  July 30, 2008

We’ve heard that; we’ve heard the pejorative “arrogant” before. When I say “we” I mean those of us who are “others” in America; people of color. Minorities. Women. We hear the word all the time from a select section of privileged white guys. . . . “Those people . . . How dare they think they can work jobs like ours or live in neighborhoods like ours or send their children to school with ours? Those people are just so damn arrogant.”

To be clear, I’m certain that neither Klein nor Vennochi had any desire to trigger this association. In the case of McCain and Rove and Krauthammer, I’m not so sure. But in this particular case, intention doesn’t matter all that much. If the press keeps pursuing this particular argument with its recent uncritical zeal, the outcome of November’s election could be decided, in large part, by a nasty bit of media-sponsored, subliminal racism.

So, should Obama’s (alleged) arrogance be off-limits? Of course not. Before covering it, though, the media would do well to think the issue through a bit more carefully — and to be sure the egotism in question exists in his mind, not just ours.

To read the “Don’t Quote Me” blog, go to thePhoenix.com/medialog. Adam Reilly can be reached atareilly@phx.com.

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