Essence Magazine, the beautiful women’s magazine formerly owned by black folks, has treated us to another interview with what can only be termed as an “acceptable” corporate role model for black women, Condoleezza Rice, Secretary of State and part-time Bush spokesmodel.
The Bush/corporate spokesmodel shared some startling insights. A favorite quotation is the following regarding the Administration response to Hurricane Katrina:
“I resented the notion that the President of the United States, this President of the United States, would somehow decide to let people suffer because they were black…I found that to be the most corrosive and outrageous claim that anybody could have made, and it was wholly and totally irresponsible.”
She professed no feelings of accountability, Rice said, “The government did its best. People aren’t perfect, and this response was not perfect. You know, I do foreign policy, I don’t run Homeland Security. I don’t run FEMA. I do foreign policy.” She elaborated, “I did what I could to coordinate the international response.”
I find it remarkably tone deaf of the classically trained Miss Condi to confess astonishment that black folks believe that the Katrina response was slower because the thousands of people that were literally at risk of drowning didn’t look like Barbara Bush.
You could hardly blame black folk for believing this. I mean, didn’t the President’s mother say, ” Almost everyone I’ve talked to says, ‘We’re gonna move to Houston.’ What I’m hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas… Everybody is so overwhelmed by the hospitality, and so many of the people in the arenas here, you know, were underprivileged anyway. This is working very well for them.”
While Condi was busy “coordinating” the international response in the upscale shoe departments of Manhattan, the President’s mother was assuring the American people that it was a step up for Hurricane Katrina survivors to be sleeping on the floor in the Houston Astrodome dazed, confused, homeless, and unemployed. She had the audacity to fear that these “underprivileged” people would be living so close to her in Houston.
The firestorm generated by these particular comments from Mrs. Bush elicited no reponse from the corporate spokesmodel that I can recall.
This is the real Condi. She is an unrepentant apologist for the racist neglect of Katrina. Perhaps black women can stop admiring her because there really is nothing admirable about selling black folks out.