Michael Williams Mistaken For A Waiter

This is just…..just……sigh….

Katherine Haenschen at the Burnt Orange Report writes:

You know your political party has a race problem when activists are frequently mistaking a rising star in a major state for… a waiter.That’s what happened to Michael Williams at CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference. Williams is a Railroad Commissioner appointed by George W. Bush, the first African American to hold a statewide executive office in Texas, and an erstwhile Texas Senate candidate. During an interview at CPAC, Williams said other [overwhelmingly white] attendees mistook him for being the help. Repeatedly.

Read the rest here.

It probably stinks to be mistaken for a waiter, repeatedly, knowing full well that it’s because your fellow conservatives assume that a man of color in that environment should be fetching a pitcher of iced tea to top you off rather than contributing to serious policymaking.  And yet he is not able to complain about it even a little bit – you don’t want to bite the hand that feeds you.  The bow tie is a cute explanation, and while I don’t buy that he believes it even for a minute, it’s better than having them turn on him which is the alternative.

I will never understand how some minorities, women, and homosexuals can identify with the GOP.  Even if they agree with some of the fiscal policy issues on the conservative platform, fundamentally, conservatism actively seeks to strip these groups of their rights and reduce their quality of life.  I often want to shake them and ask, “They don’t support you – how can you support them?”

If my very identity is belittled, disrespected, and legislatively attacked over and over, any other issues become trivial.  Apparently some people don’t see it that way and of course they are free to do so, but it makes me wonder what sort of value they place on self.  Perhaps not as much as they should.



  1. Aimee said,

    February 22, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    I have had the same questions for years. I cannot fathom supporting a political party that doesn’t put my rights forth as a priority.

    • February 22, 2011 at 3:55 pm

      Thanks Aimee – Being here in this big fat red state, I have a lot of contact with conservatives and I think abut this a lot. I have a gay acquaintance who is a HUGE Palin fan….at first I assumed it was a joke, but it wasn’t. I’m still reeling from that one.

  2. Jeff said,

    February 24, 2011 at 5:20 am

    I figure it’s two things:

    1. Stockholm Syndrome

    2. A neurological bias toward fundamentalism/authoritarianism. As I keep saying on Ron’s blog and elsewhere, there is a small but growing body of evidence indicating this.

    In any case, there’s no reasoning most of them out of it.

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