The MSM is at a loss to understand why Michelle Obama got tagged as an “angry black woman,” and is bending over backwards to disabuse working class men and woman – in particular – of this notion. Case in point, this fawning profile in The New York Times, which was unintentionally revealing in ways that support the lingering concerns some voters have about her takeaway message from 20 years of listening to Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s sermons.  

Here’s Michelle Obama in action as VP of Community Affairs at the University of Chicago Medical Center in 2001:  

Hospital brass had gathered to break ground for a children’s building when African-American protesters broke in with bullhorns, drowning out the proceedings with demands that the hospital award more contracts to minority firms. …

She revised the contracting system, sending so much business to firms owned by women and other minorities that the hospital won awards.

But were these firms the most experienced in hospital construction? Were their bids the most competitive? The Times doesn’t say, leading the reader to wonder whether factors such as these entered into the contract-awarding process at all.

A “Community Affairs” executive is typically part spokesperson for his or her employer and part ombudsman. Michelle Obama expanded her role and “altered the hospital’s research agenda,” according to The Times:

When the human papillomavirus vaccine, which can prevent cervical cancer, became available, researchers proposed approaching local school principals about enlisting black teenage girls as research subjects.

Mrs. Obama stopped that. The prospect of white doctors performing a trial with black teenage girls summoned the specter of the Tuskegee syphilis experiment of the mid-20th century, when white doctors let hundreds of black men go untreated to study the disease [emphasis, The Stiletto].

Anyone who knows the facts about the Tuskegee experiment understands that (a) the government did not infect black men with syphilis, as Rev. Wright so often charged; (b) the men under observation had gotten the STD the typical way and were in the tertiary-stage, thus were no longer contagious; (c) one of the reasons the men weren’t treated was that no proven remedies were then available; and (d) the experiment was carried out “with the full knowledge, endorsement and participation of African-American medical professionals, hospitals and research institutes,” according to University of Chicago professor Richard Schweder.

The Times elides Michelle Obama’s motivation for putting the kibosh on the vaccine trial by informing readers that the participants in the Tuskegee experiment were untreated, but not stating whether she believed they had been deliberately infected. Reading between the lines, one can surmise that Michelle Obama halted a medical trial aimed at slowing the spread of a potentially fatal STD amongst the black population – exactly what the Tuskegee experiment was aiming to accomplish – because she did not understand the facts as her colleague Schweder does, but as her now-ex-pastor Wright does.

But wait, there’s more:

“I hate diversity workshops,” she says. “Real change comes from having enough comfort to be really honest and say something very uncomfortable.” …

Mrs. Obama has already had to check her brutally honest approach to talking about race. Now she co-stars in a campaign that would as soon mute most discussion of race.

Michelle Obama can’t possibly hate diversity workshops more than white Americans who are continually on the receiving end of a “brutally honest” approach where only one side is allowed to be brutal and there isn’t all that much honesty about just what – if anything – whites today “owe” blacks for slavery and Jim Crow, injustices that occurred two or more generations before they were born or their ancestors even got here.

Note: The Stiletto writes about politics and other stuff at The Stiletto Blog, chosen an Official Honoree in the Political Blogs category by the judges of the 12th Annual Webby Awards (the Oscars of the online universe) along with CNN Political Ticker, Swampland (Time magazine) and The Caucus (The New York Times).

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