The local newspaper that shocked the nation by using the headline “The N—er in the White House” has put the full article online, so readers can see the title in context. The article was written by James Lincoln Collier for WestView News, and is supportive of President Barack Obama, despite what its title may suggest to those who haven’t read it.
He posits in the article quite plainly that “far right voters hate Obama because he is black. The simple truth is that there is still in America an irreducible measure of racism. A large minority have for some six years been quietly angry that they must have in the White House a member of an inferior class of people. Until recently. however, they have felt constrained to keep their mouths shut. But America’s increasing tolerance of far right opinion has made racism more acceptable, so long as it can be disguised, however thinly, as politics.”
Collier called in to CNN on Monday to defend his title, even after the public outrage. “”That was the whole point, is that a great many people in the United States continue to think of President Obama as the n–er,” Collier told Don Lemon. “And I wanted to make that point that there’s a substantial amount of racism still existing in the United States, and that’s how I expressed it in order to get that point across as strongly as I could.”
He went on to say that he expected “some response” for calling out people who mask their racism by pretending to focus on political matters, but didn’t expect the level of response he has seen, as evidenced by him even appearing on a national platform like CNN.
Collier said the reaction helped him realize how emotional the issue still is in the country, but insisted that he wouldn’t change a thing about the piece he submitted. Now, readers have an opportunity to delve beyond the headline to see the full story that precipitated it.