Eric Holder's Boring-Ass Speech On Race

I'm sure the diarrhea merchants are having a field day with that "nation of cowards" line. I understand the desire amongst white folks to not be typecast as the scheming, sniveling villain. It's simplistic, and dehumanizing. It reduces individuals into an indistinguishable, robotic mass.

That said, you could only be offended by that line if you think "the nation" only includes white people. For the record, given the behavior of a lot of "black leaders"--and black people--pre-Iowa,  cowardly ain't exactly wrong. Anyway, I really have no idea what Holder meant, beyond what he literally said. I found his speech unremarkable and vague. But I can only take that line as it was--a statement about the entire nation.

Presented by

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Stop-Motion Tour of New York City

A filmmaker animated hundreds of still photographs to create this Big Apple flip book

Video

The Absurd Psychology of Restaurant Menus

Would people eat healthier if celery was called "cool celery?"

Video

This Japanese Inn Has Been Open For 1,300 Years

It's one of the oldest family businesses in the world.

Video

What Happens Inside a Dying Mind?

Science cannot fully explain near-death experiences.

More in Entertainment

From This Author

Just In