We all know that people use code words to describe a feeling and/or action. It’s done within families, communities, and yes, even politics. Many politicians like to use certain words to refer to people, communities, and behaviors.
At the CPAC conference held at the National Harbor, MD, Rep, Paul Ryan hinted to the fact that there is a ‘real culture problem ‘in our inner cities. Let’s face it for a moment – that was a code word
In his book, Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class, author Ian Haney Lopez speaks of manipulation of racism in the service arena. Lopez says his book focuses on ‘elected officials’ ability to tap into bias without being explicit about it, all to gain the support for regressive policies which ironically, hurt working-class white people as much as people of color.”
What’s so interesting about this is that these politicians know what words to use to convey their message without ever really being called on it. However, the good news here is that you’re about to be educated or should I say informed about what to look out for.
Here’s the list:
- ‘Inner City’ –Ryan later regretted using the phrase ‘inner city culture.’ What’s the code behind Ryan’s statement? According to Lopez – ‘you can’t publicly say black people don’t like to work, but you can say there’s an inner-city culture in which generations of people don’t value work.’
- ‘States’ Rights’ – During Barry Goldwater’s campaign in 1964, this term was used to show the ‘resistance of federal mandates to integrate schools and society.’
- ‘Forced Busing’ – This was supposed to be racially neutral. Even though kids were bused to schools for a while, it was only really mentioned when race became an issue.
- ‘Cut Taxes’ – An example of this was former President Ronald Reagan who said ‘cut taxes, what he was communicating to the middle class was so your taxes won’t be wasted on minorities.‘
- ‘Law and Order’ – Lopez describes this as a way to ‘draw on an image of minorities as criminals that was used by both Reagan and Clinton.’
- ‘Welfare and Food Stamps’ – A way of transferring wealth to minorities.
- ‘Shariah Law’ – This was spoken of a lot during the Bush Administration. Lopez says ‘the point is these brown Muslim people are infiltrating our country, so be afraid, and vote for politicians who will support the right wing.’
- ‘Illegal Alien’ – Lopez describes this as ‘racial rhetoric about Latinos that is now being couched in this seemingly racially neutral language, and harnessed to support fear of people to support conservative policies.’
Without a doubt, Lopez has given us great points. We must never overlook what politicians are saying. Listen carefully and you will uncover hidden agendas.
Source: The Root
Dr. Sinclair Grey III is a speaker, activist, published author of (5) books, life coach, and liberator of persons from all intellectual, social and cultural walks of life. He is a committed advocate for change. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter @drsinclairgrey. Visit his website: www.sinclairgrey.org