The Anti-Defamation League demanded an apology. But where are the screaming editorials or the outrage from the pundit class? You see, Democrats like black attack dogs such as Rangel. They help to keep the black electorate angry and hostile toward Republicans, the better to ensure their 90 percent monolithic black Democratic vote.
This explains the Democrats' silence. But what about Republicans? Where is their demand for an apology from Charlie Rangel? This explains one of the reasons why Republicans fail to attract the black vote. Republicans remain unwilling to challenge irresponsible accusations of racism -- especially from so-called black leaders -- which allows the Democrats to continue to define the Republican Party as a party of bigots.
When Rangel, back in 1994, said of the incoming Republican Congress, "They don't say [racial epithet for Latinos] or [racial epithet for blacks] anymore. They say, 'Let's cut taxes'," Republicans said little.
When Al Sharpton sought the Democratic Party presidential nomination, having reached national prominence by falsely accusing a former district attorney of rape, Republicans said nothing. When Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., former chair of the Black Congressional Caucus, called former President George Herbert Walker Bush a "racist," Republicans said little.
Rangel's remarks should have engendered the same kind of outcry brought about by Durbin's insidious remarks. Yes, Rangel made the comments on a radio show, as opposed to the Senate floor. But Al Jazeera and extremist websites would still have carried Durbin's remarks had the senator made them while standing in line at Starbucks. And Durbin serves as the second-ranking Democrat in the Senate. But Rangel is the ranking member on the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. He is serving his 17th term in the Senate.
The Democratic Party "earns" its 90 percent black vote by refusing to look at blacks as individuals, as opposed to members of an aggrieved group. Republicans make the same mistake by refusing to respond to "black leaders'" often silly accusations of racism.
When Republicans say nothing in the face of irresponsible charges by "black leaders," many other blacks quietly say to themselves, "They didn't fight back. Maybe they've got something to hide."
Rep. Rangel, your turn to apologize.