The implication of Romney’s advisor and his answer forgets 400 years of America’s African history, whose shared heritage built the country’s wealth and helped fight the wars and healed diseases, including dysentery, a major killer in the civil war. Africans came before the Mayflower.
It ignores the subtle way words and vocabulary, with their unspoken meanings, are used to create division while denying its purpose, to prevent and disqualify individuals and groups from wealth, privilege, opportunity, and power–or to create a backlash against their advance. It ignores the long special vocabulary racism created in the course of its history and the way it creates new words and means to signal its exclusion and presumed inequality.
It forgets that many of us are neither “sensitive” nor stupid and certainly not willing to overlook a view historically discredited or the attack on a President whose grandfather from Kansas fought in WW2 for the liberty of England and freedom for all. Those who are sensitive are quick to deny the obvious and blame others for the indefensible.