Sunday, December 15, 2002

I don't have much to say about the whole Trent Lott fiasco, except to note that since it was not an "off-the-cuff" remark -- a la Al Gore's unfortunate wording that got morphed into the urban legend that he invented the Internet -- but rather an actual, written comment in Lott's text for that day, I can't fathom what on earth he was thinking. Even if he is a raging racist (and I suspect he's at least a non-raging racist), surely a politician of his experience would be able to craft his rhetoric better than this. I caught a replay of the moment the other day, and I was so flabbergasted that he could actually, knowingly write and say those words without realizing how they would be interpreted, I could only think of that scene in Reality Bites where the Winona Ryder character finally has had enough with the nasty female anchor on the news show she writes for that she slips some...unfortunate words into the prompter feed, causing the anchor to say something live, on-the-air, like "I wet myself". Of course, that's not the case here, although Lott might well wish it was.

We all say stupid things, things we wish we could take back. But we rarely plan on saying stupid things. We rarely put them into the body of our prepared text. This is precisely the kind of laughably absurd story that keeps me a political junkie (although I try not to write about that here).

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