Controversy over Richard Cohen’s Comments on the De Blasio Family

Paul Farhi, Washington Times, November 12, 2013

Richard Cohen has a knack for making venom-spewing enemies out of people who should be his allies.

Like on Tuesday, when The Washington Post columnist wrote about New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s chances in the 2016 Iowa Republican caucuses and took a detour to consider Bill de Blasio, New York City’s newly elected mayor, and his multiracial family:

“People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York—a white man married to a black woman and with two biracial children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, used to be a lesbian?) This family represents the cultural changes that have enveloped parts—but not all—of America. To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.”

The baying for Cohen’s head on the Internet quickly ensued—primarily from liberals who might otherwise consider Cohen, who has been a left-of-center presence on the newspaper’s op-ed page for a generation, one of their own.

The Huffington Post slapped a big photo of Cohen, 72, on its media page and roared, “Dear Washington Post: Please Fire This Man.”

Esquire.com columnist Charles Pierce fumed, “If Newspaper Stupid had a top 40, Richard Cohen would be the Beatles in 1965.”

There was more critical coverage, from, among others, the Atlantic, Salon, Gawker, Slate, MSNBC.com and even The Post’s Wonkblog, which helpfully pointed out that 87 percent of Americans in a Gallup survey this year approved of interracial marriage. {snip}

Cohen begs to differ. Strongly.

“I don’t understand it,” said the columnist, who lives in New York City. “What I was doing was expressing not my own views but those of extreme right-wing Republican tea party people. I don’t have a problem with interracial marriage or same-sex marriage. In fact, I exult in them. It’s a slander” to suggest otherwise. “This is just below the belt. It’s a purposeful misreading of what I wrote.”

He added, “I think it’s reprehensible to say that because you disagree with something that you should fire me. That’s what totalitarians do.”

Cohen’s boss, Post editorial-page editor Fred Hiatt, defends his man in this latest flap this way: “Anyone reading Richard’s entire column will see he is just saying that some Americans still have a hard time dealing with interracial marriage.” But Hiatt takes some of the heat himself, saying, “I erred in not editing that one sentence more carefully to make sure it could not be misinterpreted.”

This isn’t the first time the liberal blogosphere has been upset about Cohen. His columns on a host of political, racial and cultural subjects have irregularly driven his critics to apoplexy as well as accusations of sexism and racism. Cohen, for example, got a vehemently negative reaction this summer when he touched on George Zimmerman’s shooting of Trayvon Martin by writing: “I don’t like what George Zimmerman did, and I hate that Trayvon Martin is dead. But I also can understand why Zimmerman was suspicious and why he thought Martin was wearing a uniform we all recognize.”

{snip}

Cohen says he inspires strong passions because he’s willing to veer from liberal orthodoxy on racial or cultural topics. “People feel strongly about these things, and they feel the need to punish you if you don’t agree,” he said. {snip}

Cohen said he still enjoys writing his weekly column and intends to keep at it as long as the paper will have him. Or “until Gawker sends over a hit man,” he said.

{snip}

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  • RHG

    Got to love when leftwing kooks eat their own, and it’s funny that he is now just discovering that it’s the leftwingers that are the totalitarians when their venom is directed at him…LOL

    • So CAL Snowman

      The leftwing kooks are so brain dead and unintelligent that they could not even figure out that Cohen was insulting right wingers!

      • RHG

        Yep, they are so quick to take offense and show their “outrage” that they open their big mouths and spew before they even figure out what they are spewing about. It now only needs to sound “offensive” before they go off.

      • DerekaGrandon

        Actually, I don’t think “…they are so brain dead…” I’m sure the cultural Marxists were very well aware “…that Cohen was insulting right wingers.” But they lashed out at him with fury because he told some pretty transparent truths that would also appeal to folks with not so conventional views. Truths that were more powerful than his bashing of conservatives.

        I’m also sure the liberal smart set is not happy at all at this statement either: ‘This family represents the cultural changes that have enveloped parts—but not all—of America.’

        They hate someone like Cohen wising up folks in our nation that ‘…a white man married to a black woman (to boot a lesbian) and with two biracial children…’ is still seen in a very negative way by a great majority of Americans, no matter their ideological stand.

        Cohen keeps on pulling worms from the can:

        ‘To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.’

        And, come to think of it to “not so cultural conservatives” either!

        It takes only one guy to say what millions think and the cultural left despises it being aired out.

  • A lot of people do this often.

    They’ll project their own opinion about something by denouncing other people for having or supposedly having the same position.

    I noticed this earlier this year, after Rachel “Nuclear Prize in Physics” Jeantel testified. A number of black writers, commentators and talking heads were all beside themselves, fuming that all these racist right wing whites were making fun of her. When in reality there wasn’t really any of that. Okay, in our little slice of the internet, we were making fun of her, but they weren’t thinking of us when they said that. Then I figured it out: They were denouncing everyone else (e.g. O’Reilly, Hannity, etc.) for making fun of her (when they never did) because THEY were making fun of her, or they were the ones who thought she was a blooming moron (gee, where would they get a crazy notion like that?), and they were bouncing their own opinions off of people who didn’t have them because that was their way of getting those opinions out there into circulation. Or, it was a manifestation of their own subconscious.

    That’s what I think is going on here. Cohen wanted to make fun of the DeBlasio oil drilling freak show, and he started out bouncing his own opinions off of his political adversaries in the generic, denouncing them for having those opinions (if they really did). But where he went “wrong” (in the eyes of the left) is that it is just too obvious here that these are also his own opinions.

    • Romulus

      That is classic projectionism. Excellent that you gleaned that from the article.
      Being that Jews are generally considered a protected elite/minority victims, they usually get a free pass to say whatever they want without fear of reprisal.

    • puffdaddy

      They were cringing with embarrassment that she was an honest portrayal of her demographic so to save face at this embarrassment they invented the fact that the Other was making fun of her.

    • kris

      Exactly. I see this a lot in today’s sitcoms, the insufferable Seth Macfarlane cartoons, every caricature of the Southern US/Christian/white guy etc racist genre “comedy”. They add in the racist jokes- see, it’s “fine” as long as a “racist” character is telling the (terrible) jokes. Gee, who writes for these sitcoms anyway? and who lets it get past the editors?White Jewish media moguls, that’s who.

  • NeanderthalDNA

    He added, “I think it’s reprehensible to say that because you disagree with something that you should fire me. That’s what totalitarians do.”

    Sounds like a Larry David episode. But yes, democratic totalitarians are totalitarians.

    • ms_anthro

      Per Orwell: “Liberal: a power worshipper without power.”

  • tacheles

    “Paul Farhi, Washington Times, November 12, 2013”
    Upon closer inspection it turns out to be the Washington Post

  • Pro_Whitey

    87% of Americans favor miscegenation. If true, that’s bad news, a sign that the left has been really good at alternatively bullying and shunning those who dare disagree and fawning over those who come around. I hope more stories get out about how much more dangerous the lives of white women become when they give it up to black men, and how much more dangerous it becomes for the white grandparents, and the inherent waste of the white ancestors’ efforts and seed. As you can tell, I’m against miscegenation.

    • Puggg

      87% of people say they do. Whether they actually do, that’s anyone’s guess.

      If a pollster confronts or calls a person to ask them if they approve of IR relationships, the temptation is always there for people who don’t to say they do.

      • Jesse James

        I bet not even 87% of black women favor miscegenation. They keep ending up without a chair when the music stops.

    • So CAL Snowman

      I highly doubt 87% of Americans favor miscegenation. Maybe 87% of non White males favor sexual relations with White females. You have to remember that according to the main stream media, the MAJORITY of americans favor amnesty for illegal alien invaders.

      • Sick of it

        Obviously most Americans are against amnesty, but most folks don’t seem bothered by interracial marriage. Even where I’ve lived, they’re only bothered by whites marrying blacks (and that does not include everyone in the area).

        • M.

          Yeah, it just isn’t as taboo as it used to be. But trends can change.

    • Non Humans

      It’s 87% of Americans in a gallup survey. Meaning those Americans that were surveyed, and no telling what part/s of the country.
      .
      I have serious doubts about 87%.

      • DerekaGrandon

        Me too. Very serious doubts.

  • Lewis33

    I was so glad to see Cohen getting spat upon by his liberal peers for their failure to understand what he said. This fool has been haunting the pages of my hometown paper since I first started reading it over twenty years ago…

    • Xerxes22

      Richard Cohen wasnt too bad when he first started out. In fact he was pretty good but old age has turned him senile. He is now an Obama worshipper. Any criticism of Obama is racist and any criticism of Israel is anti-semetic. It’s time for him to retire.

  • Pelagian

    “and they feel the need to punish you if you don’t agree,”

    Welcome to our world, Dick. Were about as far away from the framers ideal of “free speech” and tolerance as it gets. .

  • Rhialto

    This is what the Liberal should have written (he might have gotten a Pulitzer):

    “Haters with Racist views have to repress an urge to gun violence, when considering the mayor-elect of New York—a loving white man married to a proud black woman and with two wonderful children. (Should I mention that Bill de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray, is an enemy of Homophiia?) This family represents the cultural changes that are the future of an America, an America we can all be proud of.”

  • DaveMed

    “To cultural conservatives, this doesn’t look like their country at all.”

    Lol. No offense, Mr. Cohen, but it’s been many, many moons since cultural conservatives gave up on New York looking like their country.

  • Lord_Steven_Regal

    “I think it’s reprehensible to say that because you disagree with something that you should fire me. That’s what totalitarians do.”

    ———-

    It looks like it’s starting to dawn on Mr. Cohen that Liberals are indeed totalitarians.

    • DiversityIsDeath

      Yeah, now Cohen is on his high horse pontificating about ethics and propriety only because the liberals attacked HIM. “Oy, the injustice being perpetrated against ME!” He had no problem with liberals until they turned on him. (It will be interesting to watch how this brohaha develops.)

  • Blue-eyed Devil

    Truth be told, it’s Jews like Cohen who are pushing the race-mixing agenda down our Gentile throats while making sure their Jewish American Princesses marry people with names like Silverstein, Goldberg, and Katz.

    • Xerxes22

      I remember a column that Richard Cohen wrote many years ago. It was about a bachelorette type TV show. In it he complained the all the applicants were White. He wanted to see Black males competing for a date with the White bachelorette.

    • Jefferson

      50 percent of married Jews in the U.S have a Gentile spouse. So Jews in the U.S are doing a horrible of maintaining Jewish purity.

      • Alexandra1973

        You know, I’m hardly an anti-Semite, but Jews should marry Jews, not Gentiles.

        • Romulus

          Agreed, especially since they espouse miscegenation as the pathway to assimilation. One would assume that if they are now indeed “white”, they would either be pagans or Christians and not Jews.

          So who exactly were the ones assimilated, us or them.

        • Jefferson

          I don’t have a problem with Jews mixing with Gentiles because the kids of such off springs always come out looking physically White.

          After all the objection to race mixing is that when Whites mix with People Of Color, the off spring from such unions rarely look physically White.

          But that is not the case with Gentiles mixing with Jews. Unless it’s an Ethiopian Jew for example.

      • Romulus

        Which is exactly how they became “white”. If it’s an incontrovertible fact that Jews and A-rabs share a common ancestry ( i.e. anthony weiner), then they have been breeding with our women since Egypt. It would also follow that that is how they’ve been able to convert so many to their ideologies.
        You would enjoy these two tomes. 1) The atlas of christianity 2) the atlas of judaism.

  • Johnny Squire

    The sharks on the left are trained to react to any blood in the water, even if it’s the blood of their own. It’s a joy to see them use the words of their allies as chum.

  • JohnEngelman

    Cohen says he inspires strong passions because he’s willing to veer from liberal orthodoxy on racial or cultural topics. “People feel strongly about these things, and they feel the need to punish you if you don’t agree,” he said.

    – Paul Farhi, Washington Times, November 12, 2013

    One should never be afraid to tell the truth.

    • dd121

      Only if you want to keep your job in this land of the free.

  • Spartacus

    “I don’t have a problem with interracial marriage or same-sex marriage. In fact, I exult in them.”

    ———————————————————————————————————————

    Of course you do. Your name is Cohen.

  • Sensitivity Training

    This is the old “outlaw reporting on censorship” trick.

    The libs don’t want prejudice seen even if it’s in the reporting of prejudice, because they know how many in the White community will respond favorably to “hurtful and harsh” statements that reflect what we really feel inside. “Virulent” means “rational,” and simply can’t be allowed any expression at all, even when under criticism.

  • LIBERTYSINCURSION

    Richard Cohen is a blatant, hate filled,, [email protected]#RACIST#@!,,, and needs to be fired immediately! < Says the entire flock of anti-white racist known as Liberals, to a fellow anti-white racist known as Richard Cohen ) – For some reason the term "Blow-Back" comes to mind. Enjoy your bed Mr. Cohen, after all, you made it! < Says LIBERTYSINCURSION with a smile ear to ear ) : )

  • [Guest]

    >>>“What I was doing was expressing not my own views but those of extreme right-wing Republican tea party people. I don’t have a problem with interracial marriage or same-sex marriage. In fact, I exult in them.”

    A person would have to be sick in head and heart to read that as anything other than an unwitting endorsement of so-called extreme right-wing Republican tea party people.

  • Bon, From the Land of Babble

    This is not the first time Richard Cohen left the Dem plantation and strayed over to the dark side.

    In his article Racism vs. Reality, Cohen wrote:

    July 15, 2013:

    Where is the politician who will own up to the painful complexity of the problem and acknowledge the widespread fear of crime committed by young black males? This does not mean that raw racism has disappeared, and some judgments are not the product of invidious stereotyping. It does mean, though, that the public knows young black males commit a disproportionate amount of crime. In New York City, blacks make up a quarter of the population, yet they represent 78 percent of all shooting suspects

    As stated above, it didn’t take long for Cohen’s colleagues to call him every name for hater, bigot and racist:

    Elsbeth Reeve (yeah, I know) wrote in The Atlantic:

    “Cohen appears to believe all black men are the same, and that they are violent.”

    And Tom Scocca, in Gawker:

    “Richard Cohen is an Unreconstructed Bigot!”

    I thought Cohen had committed career suicide at the time (I know, silly me!), while the WaPo said they were standing by him.

    Now this. And, would he still be employed if his last name were Smith or Jones??

    Bon

    • WR_the_realist

      You can state a truth, that blacks make up a quarter of New York City’s population but are 78% of all shooting suspects, and the left will immediately accuse you of telling a lie, that all blacks are violent.

      That’s how the left works. The left is contemptible.

      • Carney3

        The thing is, Cohen sugarcoated reality. If he had pointed out that black males are only an eighth of the city population, or that black males between 15 and 35 are some smaller portion still, say one-sixteenth, the statistic would have been even more damning. Nobody’s afraid of elderly blacks, babies, or females.

        • WR_the_realist

          Not bothering to state the obvious is not the same thing as sugar coating reality. It is also true that young white men commit far more violent crime than white women or older white men. There’s no need to spell this out when the discussion is black vs. white crime rates.

    • Romulus

      Just an observation,but have you noticed how his kid looks like a Muppet.

  • Nice Guy

    The author is correct; it’s not his fault people don’t know how to read anymore.

    It IS his fault, however, for being liberal trash. 🙂

  • blight14

    I could have been the ‘model’ for his article as I find the picture/union to be utterly disgusting.

  • GeneticsareDestiny

    I had never heard of Richard Cohen before today, but he sounds like exactly the type of person who deserves this. If anyone deserves to fall victim to the liberal career-destroying machine, it’s other liberals.

  • puffdaddy

    So he is deciding what all people in a group he doesn’t like thinks, and presenting it as if it is a fact? He should be fired for that.

  • Carney3

    This is demented. The hysterical racism-hunters have such a hair trigger they turn on one of their own who says something indisputably Politically Correct.

  • DiversityIsDeath

    Ha, ha, ha, I love it. Poor, misunderstood, put upon, diversity-loving Mr. Cohen just can’t understand it.