Former CNN Anchor Denounces Buttigieg’s Reference To The “American Heartland” As Racist

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On the campaign trail, Mayor Pete Buttigieg (like Nancy Klobucher and other presidential candidates) has emphasized his ties to the “American Heartland.” The Midwest has long been viewed as an area known for moderate and common sense politics. However, a recent reference by Buttigieg to his roots in the “American Heartland” has led former CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien to denounce his words as a racist “dog whistle.”

O’Brien tweeted “It is a dog whistle . . . And maybe Mayor Pete isn’t aware of that. There is nothing more virtuous about a vision honed in the Heartland. Again—he should sit with his staffers of color and have them explain this to him.”

He is not the only one who may need such an explanation. I am from the Midwest and we have many neighbors of color. Yet, we all take pride in Midwestern values and common sense. Some of us would be happy to sit down with staff to explain that point of regional meaning and pride.

57 thoughts on “Former CNN Anchor Denounces Buttigieg’s Reference To The “American Heartland” As Racist”

  1. Note the trend in the Democrat Party:

    Identity politics – judging people not on the content of their character, but their skin color, gender, etc.
    Seeking and destroying small businesses that do not agree with Democrat policies – dragging a Christian baker into court for years, the latest because he refused to custom bake a blue cake that was pink on the inside because he doesn’t think a biological male can change his gender.
    Claiming patriotism or nationalism is xenophobic or racist. Ghandi and Nelson Mandela were a nationalist. Loving your country, and wanting the best for it and its people is a good thing. Hitler wasn’t evil because he was patriotic. He was evil because he used it as an excuse for mass murder and world domination.
    Calling people and words that are not racist, racist, for political gain. “Heartland” refers to the center, or “heart” of the country, and our farming and ranching land. It is elitist and classist to claim that the rural folk who feed America are inherently evil.
    Mocking accents of Southern and rural people, as if a single brain cell can be determined by an accent. Classist and elitist.
    Cultural appropriation – inventions, fashion, and ideas have spread throughout humankind since before the invention of fire and wearing animal skins. It is not cultural appropriation that fashion has African prints, mandarin collars, Irish lace, beading, etc.
    In general, the DNC punishes dissent, and seeks to make government more powerful at the expense of the individual.
    Dissent not allowed. Anyone who disagrees with them, especially Trump voters, will invariably be insulted and labeled horrible names, rather than calmly discussing the pros and cons of any position. There is no meeting of the minds. Critics must be alienated and punished.
    Antifa – violent extremists who feel entitled to beat up people they disagree with, even chasing down an elderly man because he had Southern plates.
    Urging violence over political disagreements – make a crowd and make sure they know they are not welcome anywhere, anymore
    Giving up friendships or family bonds with conservatives because you’ve been brainwashed to think they’re evil
    Calling a Democrat Rally a women’s march, when conservative women were not welcome

    Stop feeling nostalgic about the Democrat Party you used to know. It’s fallen on its face towards the hard Left. If moderate Democrats exit en masse and refuse to support this, it will change. The hate will continue if you keep voting for it.

  2. Sure Mayor Pete Buttigieg is a racist.

    But it’s not his fault.

    Global Warming is responsible.

    Because reasons.

  3. I have to wonder if one were to open a telnet client and point it to the CHARGEN port of the Democratic National Committee’s webserver, it would return the following:

    $ telnet chargen
    Trying …
    Connected to
    Escape character is ‘^]’.
    telnet> quit
    Connection closed.

    1. Well sure, Darren, Republicans get sick of that. But then they’re always concocting some voter suppression scheme. Or cuts in public assistance that disproportionately effects minorities. Or draconian abortion restrictions that will hobble the poorest women. Or sabotage to Obamacare. Or efforts to undermine gun restrictions in cities where gun violence is most felt by minorities. Just goes to any new site and you’ll see the latest scheme.

      Today’s scheme is an announcement that Medicaid will be turned into a block grant program. That could have far-,reaching effects on families that rely on Medicaid.

      1. “yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…yeah,but…

        1. Darren, if those are only ‘Yeah Buts’, tell me how many Black Republicans serve in congress.

          And tell me why, when Republicans gather for conventions, the only Blacks are those on stage.

          1. Uh, because Blacks as a group suck up to Democrats because of free stuff. When 77.3% of your kids are illegitimate, then you are going to stay barefoot, broke, and pregnant and a Democrat. That is what the Democratic Party leadership intended with the Great Society programs. To screw up blacks and make them dependent.
            The No. 1 problem among blacks is the effects stemming from a very weak family structure. Children from fatherless homes are likelier to drop out of high school, die by suicide, have behavioral disorders, join gangs, commit crimes and end up in prison. They are also likelier to live in poverty-stricken households. But is the weak black family a legacy of slavery? In 1960, just 22 percent of black children were raised in single-parent families. Fifty years later, more than 70 percent of black children were raised in single-parent families. Here’s my question: Was the increase in single-parent black families after 1960 a legacy of slavery, or might it be a legacy of the welfare state ushered in by the War on Poverty?

            Walter Williams

            Squeeky Fromm
            Girl Reporter

          2. And tell me why, when Republicans gather for conventions, the only Blacks are those on stage.

            That’s racist! How do you know the only Blacks are those onstage?And maybe many of those you identify as non-Black identify as Black. Shameful!

  4. Calling out someone as a racist has become meaningless because it has become simply noise. Real racism does not need calling out because it stands out loud and clear.

    1. Does anyone even know what racism is any more??? Because I might be one, but I can’t get any of the Dems here to define for me what they think it is. So who knows??? I think merely saying bad things about Blacks, though true, counts for them but who knows???

      Squeeky Fromm
      Girl Reporter

      1. Does anyone even know what racism is any more??? Because I might be one,
        maybe it is like pornography – you know it when you see it.

          1. jinn – I honestly could not tell you if something was porn or not.
            OK, that is one vote for nothing is porn.

            Anybody else want to vote?

            1. jinn – with full-frontal nudity (both sexes) and actual sex acts in “regular” movies, what is your definition of porn?

        1. Oh that’s easy, Jinn, “racism” is the automatic retort when you stump a liberal with a logical argument that devastates his position.

          As in, 2 + 2 = ?

          You’re racist!

  5. Calling out others as racist has become meaningless because it is done so frequently. It has become simply noise. No one pays attention because real racism stands out loud and clear on its own and needs no one to call it out.

    1. It’s an intellectually lazy charge that is intended to divide people susceptible to manipulation. I suspect it’s working with a particular subset of Americans, but by and large, I doubt it has any real meaning to a very percentage of the population.

    1. What you’ve shown is only that the metaphor is imperfect. It does have good meaning: “Dog-whistle politics is political messaging employing coded language that appears to mean one thing to the general population but has an additional, different, or more specific resonance for a targeted subgroup.” (Wikipedia) So, you’re a dog if the whistle resonates with you, if you’re the intended target of the message. Non-dogs can observe that a coded message is being sent, and understand its meaning.

  6. Mayor Pete Buttigieg (like Nancy Klobucher and other presidential candidates) has emphasized his ties to the “American Heartland.” The Midwest has long been viewed as an area known for moderate and common sense politics.

    There is no indication that Booty-gig is anything but what he appears to be: the issue of the faculty bubble in which his father was ensconced for 40-odd years and in which his mother still lives. His entire life up to age 32 was spent in these subcultures or in milieu made up of haut bourgeois quite familiar with these subcultures. Competing for a municipal office and spending some time at a Naval Intelligence outpost were branching out for him. It’s absolutely amazing that local politicians in South Bend did not put him in his place and that local voters were willing to accept him. He offers not one viewpoint which would be outre in a faculty rathskellar. The town is going to be more obtrusive to the gown in South Bend than it is in Ithaca or Amherst or Seattle’s U-district, but the distinctions between them are modest.

    1. The preceding Democrat mayor of South Bend Stephen Leucke was excellent and competent mayor. He laid the foundations for much of what Pete has taken credit for himself. Specifically, changes to the zoning code and other urban renewal projects drawing on the wisdom of the “new urbanism” which is worth a look if anybody is interested in the subject of land use and development.

      Of course the hidden hand behind 90% of the good ideas was the architecture department at the University of Notre Dame which is actually one of the best around. Oh and their deep pockets.

      Prior to that the mayor was Joe Kernan who was also a competent civil servant.

      How does the local Democrat party pick its winners is an excellent question. Of course there is a primary held, but let’s turn to the fellow who managed the local party for years and years there and ask. Say, where is he now? Not giving many interviews these days, why?

      As to Pete’s dad he was a don of the English department, and an expert on Gramsci. Who for those who dont know, was an Italian communist and an important figure in “postmodernism”

      South Bend is populated with many employees and graduates of the university and nominally many are Catholics. Nominally is the key word. Just as it is so with the university.

      Before Notre Dame, the public schools were the top employer; before that it was Bendix which made aircraft brakes; long before that, Studebaker autos. This is a typical Rust belt legacy situation. Now, it’s the university, which grows its massive endowment at a pace which makes the Vatican blush with envy. And i mean that quite literally.

      The African American community in South Bend are sharp critics of Pete and he’s obviously trying to rectify his dismal reputation with them through pandering.

      Why it just so happens AP did a thorough review of why…. a solid piece of investigative journalism

      Back to the Democrats out here in flyover. I maintain that there are many good people in the ranks and that includes one or more persons in Pete’s own staff. As you have often suggested, the problem of all this jive like calling folks racists, is a deep cultural issue.

      We are raised in culture and it grips our imagination. It pervades our language and existence. Not many people qualified and competing for the usual assortment of administrative jobs in either public or private spheres, are able to break out of it. Suffice to say that there is a spoils system operating in every town and city and megapolis in America and the big money calls the shots. Not only are Democrats not immune to this, they are very much immersed in it, even as they mouth the usual platitudes which are supposed to enthuse the workers. It’s very very hard for people to break out of this and they do it at their own financial peril.

      And funny how we see the biggest line of folks waiting for anything in recent years there in South Bend outside of football games in South Bend was for who?

      That’s right. POTUS Donald J Trump!

  7. The woman’s an obnoxious jerk. However, Booty-gig deserves this in spades. Both of them are part of a cultural nexus which provides plenary indulgences for obnoxious jerks and it’s a reasonable wager he’s never provided any serious or explicit resistance to such people. Pass the popcorn and we can watch the Revolution devour its own.

  8. “It is a dog whistle. And maybe Mayor Pete isn’t aware of that.”

    What a moron. It can’t be a “dog whistle” unless it’s intentional.

  9. Soledad should watch the movie Blazing Saddles. “Where da white women at?”

  10. My dad had a “soul”. He knew how to spull too. He was from the Midwest. But he was really from Alsace two generation back. People with the name O’Brien are from Scotland or Ireland. Where did you go to high school is a question which matters in America and more precisely in you geographic area of town. Buttigieg’s family got to Ellis Island and there they changed their name from Buttpoop.

  11. I wonder why any sane, self-respecting white person would ever vote for another Democrat. I also wonder why any insane, self-hating white person just doesn’t move to Nigeria, Kenya, or Haiti to be surrounded by those wonderful people-of-color.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. Squeaky, what we always see from you are efforts to caliberate how close you can come to writing something racist without really quite going there. If that’s your form of amusement, one imagines the most vacuous of chicks.

      Exactly what are you reporting as a ‘girl reporter’?

      1. Huh??? What’s racist about what I said??? I think if someone is full of admiration for “people of color”, whatever the F that means, then why don’t they go live with them??? If they can’t afford the cost of moving to Africa, then just move to their local inner city black neighborhood! There, they can experience the wonderful joy of living in a matriarchal society, among people of color! Housing is cheap there, particularly if it is a fixer-upper. There is all sorts of ethno-cultural stuff going on. They can send their kids to the local Trayvon Martin Junior High School, or the Michael Brown Memorial High School. I think that should be the obvious option for such people. Viable and doable.

        Why would you say mean things to me when I am only trying to help liberal white people be happy???

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

  12. Yet, we all take pride in Midwestern values and common sense


    I am a person of color and I too have ties to the Midwest. We cook with Cheddar Cheese in our omelette while wearing MAGA Cheesehead hats!

    Where exactly is the geographic boundary to your “values and common sense” in the Midwest? Is there a fault line or teutonic plate that divides a drop of spit when a Midwesterner expels it? Do the Amish of Ohio share the same views of the Catholics in Saint Louis? Do the Poles in Aurora (that is in Illinois, Peter Shill) consider the pennies that were thrown at them by locals as a “common sense” ethos? Would the Protestants in the Dakotas and Iowa take kindly to the Jesuitical thinking found at decidedly Midwestern Loyola, Creighton, Marquette, St Louis U, Rockhurst U, John Carroll U, et al?

    Besides, everyone knows Trump is cheesehead and Hillary would rather toss the Rust Belt and the Flyover States into the ocean

    1. Estovir, what are you babbling about??

      ..the Poles in Aurora (that is in Illinois, Peter Shill) consider the pennies that were thrown at them by locals as a “common sense” ethos.

      Aurora is an outer suburb of Chicago. ‘People threw pennies at Poles’? ..When..??

      Like everything you write, this sounds completely nuts. Again your mental state is a serious question here.

  13. Good morning MrT, please watch the video of morning joe explaining Dershowitz position on presidential power . Even you will be shocked. Thank you Hc.

  14. If O’Brien wants to censor language describing the Midwest, she ought to urge people not to use the phrase “Rust Belt” to describe it. Normal people associate rust with corrosion, blight, run down vacant buildings, etc. I don’t think any normal person forms a positive impression of an area after hearing it described as a “Rust Belt”.

    No normal person ascribes a negative connotation to the word “Heartland”. It takes considerable effort – call it brainwashing or indoctrination – to create a negative impression about the “Heartland”.

    Only someone with a weak intellect who is easily suggestible can be persuaded by such a crackpot argument.

    She went to Harvard.

    1. she ought to urge people not to use the phrase “Rust Belt” to describe it.

      No she shouldn’t. Those of us who grew up there own it.

  15. I am so overloaded on watching impeachment trial coverage, I cannot remember who covered this, but they bleeped the word Heartland each time poor Mayor Pete said it. It was pretty funny. CNN has to help narrow the Democratic gene pool and Mayor Pete has not been selected to be at the top. The fix is in again.

    1. bleeped the word Heartland

      This is the first i learn that “Heartland” is a bad thing. Dahyum! Soledad and her ilk are the real problem…not the people of the Midwest, Flyover, Rust Belt or any State….well maybe California: it is located on a fault line for a reason


      Here is to America: from sea to shining sea

  16. Koch Bros Brought Out Worst In Wisconsin

    I have family ties to Wisconsin, a state that was long considered a model of clean government and bipartisan cooperation. Until recent history, even Wisconsin Republicans were proud of the state’s progressive heritage.

    But under Governor Scott Walker, Wisconsin took a right turn and became a Koch Brothers Twilight Zone. In fact the Koch Brothers literally bought their way into the state; most notably by purchasing the Fort Howard paper mill, one of Green Bay’s largest employers.

    It is widely known that Scott Walker was beholden to the Koch Brothers. When Walker ascended to the governorship, the Koch Brothers opened a lobbying office across the street from Wisconsin’s state capital; nothing could have been less subtle.

    Under Walker Wisconsin became a union-busting, anti-abortion laboratory for the very meanest conservatives. Walker even took steps to undermine Wisconsin’s famed University system. Voter suppression was then embraced against not just Blacks in Milwaukee, but against university students as well.

    In short Walker brought out the worst in Wisconsin; a mean spirit that may have always been there. Walker exploited that mean spirit and turned Wisconsinites against each other. I could only watch from a distance, appalled as Wisconsin became a northern version of Mississippi.

    Walker was finally voted out, thank god. But it will take years to undo the damage he did. Wisconsin will probably never get back to the progressive model it was before the Koch Brothers tore it apart.

    1. Koch Bros Brought Out Worst In Wisconsin

      Peter’s handlers e-mailed him some recycled talking points from about 10 years back. He doesn’t know the difference.

      1. Tabby. I was last in Wisconsin just 4 months ago. Have you ever been there?

        Just ‘where’ you are is never clear. I remember a reference to Buffalo once. But we know for sure you’ve never been to L.A.

  17. The spread between Soledad’s actual IQ and her perceived IQ is quite large.

    A legend in her own mind. To her credit, she is wrong with conviction.

    1. No need to defend the heartland. The sad part is that this tripe is taken seriously by too many people.

      I think Soledad has the complex common to many black people who did not grow up in the ghetto. She feels the need to bolster her black bona fides by seeing racists under every rock. As long as this sort of nonsense is tolerated it will only get worse.

  18. Soledad O’Brien is trying to stay relevant.
    I am from the “Heartland” and we are not racist.
    Maybe she needs to get out of her bubble more.

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