Saturday’s New York Times anti-Trump roundup included an ironic compliment to the Trump campaign, which has freed journalists to label (Republican) politicians as liars and racists. Times editorial board member Brent Staples perversely celebrated “The Election That Obliterated Euphemisms.” The text box: “Donald Trump made it impossible to avoid the word ‘racist.’” Staples certainly didn’t.
Yesterday, New York Times editorial board member Brent Staples tweeted what was and apparently still is his best argument for why the Republican-controlled Senate should roll over and approve whoever President Obama wishes to nominate to fill the Supreme Court vacancy caused by Justice Antonin Scalia's death on Saturday: "In a nation built on slavery, white men propose denying the first black president his constitutional right to name Supreme Court nominee."
In other words, Obama should get whatever he wants because of slavery. Staples has since deleted the tweet, which is odd, because in subsequent tweets, he hasn't backed away from his position.
The New York Times is displaying an astounding lack of curiosity about a significant charge of racism relayed by its own editorial page editor. Brent Staples was quoting a Missourian article by University of Missouri journalism professor Cynthia Frisby when something she wrote just leaped off the page. It was a charge of racist slurs being hurled at her by fellow School of Journalism faculty members. So what is the response from the Times? Nothing. Even though it would be easy to investigate, they have not checked into her charges. Here is the shocking claim by Professor Frisby as relayed by the incredibly incurious Staples:
New York Times editorial board member Brent Staples, who reviewed Randall Kennedy’s “Persistence of the Color Line” for the Sunday Book Review, discussed race, Obama, and “rabid conservatives” at the front of the section.
Staples said his view of President Obama is partly shaped by what they have in common: