Let’s just ban the word “denounce,” okay?

Seriously. I don’t want to hear that word in any context ever again. Andrew Sullivan, taking a break from shamelessly shilling for Obama to focus on going after Obama in the most trivial way possible, provides a pretty good example of why.

I reiterate that I think Obama has to make clear again that he vehemently opposes the use of race to divide and separate and inflame ancient grievances; that he wants to get beyond the racial politics of the Vietnam era; that he is dedicated to overcoming race and offering hope – not obsessing about race in order to foment anger and bitterness.

The word “denounce” wasn’t in there, but it might as well have been. And as Matt points out, this is all stuff Obama has already done. In fact, it’s central to his campaign. But even if it wasn’t, what would Obama saying, “I oppose the use of race to separate and inflame ancient grievances” accomplish? Anyone can say that, and it doesn’t make it true. If you believe Obama’s sincere about it, you believe that because you’ve observed how he actually campaigns, not what some bullshit campaign meta-commentary he’s given.

The same goes for all of the candidates. I don’t want to hear anyone denounce anything everyone knows is bad. I don’t give a shit whether or not Obama endorses using race as a wedge issue. Do his actions strongly imply he doesn’t? Yes? Cool! By the same token, I equally don’t give a shit whether or not McCain endorses pointless bloodshed. Do his actions suggest this would be a byproduct of his policies? Yes? Then listening to McCain say, “I hate war” over and over again isn’t going to make me feel a whole lot better about his candidacy. But wasting all of this time talking about McCain’s personal feelings on the issue does do one thing – it wastes everyone’s time.


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