Howie Carr Calls Elizabeth Warren “Granny”; Adds Racist Tropes in Mix

Oh, Howie Carr. You’re so clever. When you first likened Massachusetts Senatorial candidate Elizabeth Warren to “Granny Clampett of the Beverly Hillbillies,” we swooned. (Actually, we blogged.)

You were so pleased with your witty new moniker, you continued to use identical language in subsequent columns. Yay.

Name It. Change It. has already explained why this nickname is sexist, so I will focus primarily on the most recent example of granny-ism. Carr published a column in Sunday’s Boston Herald, “Indian lore will play OK in Elizabeth Warren’s ‘tribe.’” In his column, Carr blasts Warren for her alleged Native American “minority status” in the 1990’s, which could theoretically have aided in her hiring.

That Warren may have benefited from her Native American heritage incenses Carr because of his incredible sensitivities to the intersecting politics of race, gender, and class, and…just kidding.

And so we have Granny Warren, the carpetbagging Democrat candidate for the U.S. Senate doubling down after being unable to produce a scintilla of evidence to back up her claims to a piece of the racial-preference racket.

Evidence? She don’t need no stinkin’ evidence. She’s got her family “lore.” She’s “proud” to be an Indian. It’s the kind of fact-free, how-dare-you defense only a Beautiful Person could get away with.

So now she’s a “Beautiful Person” and a Granny. Keep focusing that sharp political analysis on looks, Carr. It’s totally endearing! The notion that Carr writes in the best interests of marginalized people (who Warren clearly exploits for professional opportunity) disappears with phrases like “you can’t get much lower than being accused of being a fake Indian” and “they’ll be praying the story goes to the Happy Hunting Ground.” Maybe it’s how he rhetorically pits “fake Indians” and “real Indians” against each other or how he refers to a Senatorial candidate as “Pocahontas Warren,” but I get the impression that the exploitation of a disadvantaged and oppressed group is not too concerning to Carr.

Poor Granny. When she got into this fight, she thought it was going to be a coronation. Instead, it’s turning into the Battle of the Little Bighorn. And so far anyway, she’s Gen. George Armstrong Custer.

Carr’s utter readiness to exploit regressive ethnic stereotypes contradicts the notion that he is writing from some desire to “defend” the honor of the Native American people. The inspiration for this article may have come from Elizabeth Warren, but the racist and sexist language was all Carr’s.


Published by support on 04/30/2012

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