White public figures and "leaders," such as politicians, can speak in a folksy, regional manner, like those of Sarah Palin or George Bush, but non-white public figures cannot. Not if they want to get anywhere, that is--just imagine where Barack Obama would be if he regularly filled his speeches with some apparently "black" equivalent of Sarah Palin's "doggone its" and "you betchas."
In fact, white public speakers are also granted more leeway for going even further. They can habitually mangle the language, as George W. Bush does ("Make the pie higher!", "We need to put food on our families!" etc.), or they can habitually misspeak, as John McCain does, and it does little to keep them from achieving their lofty, dubious, power-grabbing stations in life.
Actually, John McCain just did it again, today:
"Clarity" indeed, Senator McCain!
McCain's slip-up here leaves me feeling pretty much like this (as does much of what leaves the mouth of his running mate, Sarah Palin):
The thing is, no matter how often or how badly McCain, Palin, Bush, or any other white public speaker regionalizes, mangles, or misspeaks their English, few if any listeners are going to attribute such deviations from standard English to their race. Which wouldn't be the case if they were non-white.
Nevertheless, McCain's verbal brain-fart today, combined with his crotchety, aimlessly stage-wandering performance in last night's debate, just might be stupendously bad enough that they'll function as the nails that seal the coffin on his candidacy.
In fact, the cast members of "Star Trek" have already weighed in to say so:
PS--They mean his candidacy is dead. Not the man himself. Gee whiz, I'm not that heartless!
H T: Plutonium Page @ Daily Kos