I meant to write about this last week, but I never got around to it. Republican front runner (in some polls), Herman Cain found himself in a scandal when it came to light on Politico that he had signed a settlement agreement with two former employees who had accused him of sexual harassment. This brought to mind the Clarence Thomas - Anita Hill hearings from 20 years ago, in which President Bush (the elder) saw his Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas come under fire for sexually harassing employee Anita Hill. It became a battle of he said / she said and people's opinions rested on who they found more credible (I found Anita Hill more credible).
Cain's response to the scandal has been rather pathetic. He kept changing his story and made a ridiculous claim that he did not sign a settlement, but was merely told of an agreement. Its hard to buy his claim of being ignorant, because he was head of the National Restaurant Association and the settlement amounts were $45,000 to one lady and $35,000 to another lady. This was a year's severance for each and happened in the 1990s. What kind of CEO would allow such large checks to be written to employees without his knowledge? If he truly is that detached from his job, he's not fit to be CEO of America. Granted, the budget of the U.S. is complex and no president knows the full accounting of every cent. However, Cain's denial brings to mind Reagan's infamous denial that he knew anything about weapons being sold to Iran with the money diverted to the Contra rebels in Nicaragua. And we've seen the disastrous results when a president allows his Vice President to make decisions and carry them out. Do we need a president like that?
Cain's wife was supposed to make media appearances but cancelled when this news story broke. It makes you wonder why she doesn't want to go out and defend her husband. It appears that perhaps she had gone through this before and she probably did not want to relive that (I bet Cain had the conversation with his wife when the initial allegations were made and the settlements agreed upon). The women had to sign a non-disclosure agreement as part of the deal, which sucks. Cain defenders get to live in the illusion that their perfect candidate is being falsely accused in order to bring him down. Ironically, I bet many of Cain's supporters were fans of Paula Jones, Gennifer Flowers, and Monica Lewinsky during the Clinton presidency. When the stain is on their candidate, deny, deny, deny! Its all a liberal media conspiracy to bring him down.
And yet, who did Cain blame for leaking the info? None other than fellow Republican Rick Perry! I believe that this came out in the news because the Republican establishment does not want Cain to be the nominee. There is no way they will allow a black man to lead their party's nomination. It leaves the racists in the party no choice. The ultimate nightmare for a racist white Republican (please not that I'm not saying that all Republicans are racist, just that there are racist voters in the Republican party) is having to choose between two black men for president.
To show how absurd the Republicans are, both Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter weighed in on the scandal. Naturally, they use this to defend Cain and lambast the "liberal media." The ultimate irony was uttered by Ann Coulter, who proved how racist she is by her comment, "Our blacks are better than their blacks!" She had said in a rant that it was easy to be a black Democrat, because the majority of African Americans are Democratic voters. She said that it was more difficult to be a black Republican because they risked the wrath and being ostracized by their people. This is patently absurd. Its easy to be a black Republican because the Republican Party is so desperate to show that they aren't racist that they put African American Republicans in prominent positions (Clarence Thomas, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Michael Steele, J.C. Watts, Alan Keyes, Herman Cain).
The worst part of Coulter's comment, though, is the use of "our", "their", and "blacks." If she doesn't realize that her statement was racist, then she truly is ignorant. The use of ours and theirs is a sign of ownership, which shows how she thinks. Her mind is still a relic of the slavery days. She thinks parties "own" African Americans. As to the use of the word "blacks", it is no longer an acceptable word to use. We've dropped the use of "yellows" (for Asians), "browns" (for Hispanics), and "reds" (for Native Americans) long ago, yet some still cling to the terms "blacks" and "whites." The acceptable terms for people is identifying by geographic origin of one's race rather than skin colour. Maybe she'll understand that someday, or maybe not. Her use of the word and what she said only brings to mind what Donald Trump had said earlier this year: "I'm good friends with the blacks." I just love hearing racist people use racist language while claiming that they aren't racist. Don't they realize that their words convict them?
As for Cain, I believe that his popularity is shallow. He's only in the race so that teabaggers can delude themselves into thinking that they aren't racist because they support him for president. Yet, when the voting time begins and they slide the curtain on their booth, I bet most of them will end up voting for a white man. Cain is a fool. Just like Alan Keyes before him. Not to mention Michael Steele (who was a disaster as the head of the Republican National Committee). His supporters might think that liberals are being "racist" for not liking him or for having a double standard, but they don't get it. Cain's views represent the narrow-minded, xenophobic views of his party (building an electric fence to kill Mexicans coming into the country? Scaring voters with the spectre of Sharia Law in America? Proposing a ban on hiring Muslims in his administration?). In addition, he has never held political office. He ran for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate seat in Georgia in 2004 and came in third, behind two white candidates (no surprise in Georgia). When he was CEO of Godfather's Pizza, he put the third rate pizza chain on solid financial footing by eliminating stores and reducing employees (which makes him a job eliminator rather than a job creator). There are many reasons why Cain should not be president. His skin colour has nothing to do with it. He, Michele Bachmann, and Rick Perry seem to be in a race towards the bottom. Who can make the nuttiest, most nonsensical statement and policy position possible?
The best quote I've seen about Cain calls to mind the Biblical story of Cain killing his brother Abel. In the Bible story, Cain was the rebel child and Abel was the angelic one. As people have written online: "Clearly, Cain is not Able." I wholeheartedly agree!