Must One “Intend” To Be Racist to Say Something That Is Racist?
Short answer: no — but the statement does have to be the product of racist thought. You should not get called a racist for a completely innocent comment that you did not intend to be racist and that has no roots in racist thought.
Here's my question - How can one NOT intend to be racist and still have racist thoughts? Moreover, how can someone make an "innocent" racist comment? Racism can't be quantified as "innocent" by any standard. Even racists know it's not.
But it's this part that makes even less sense:
making a racist comment does not mean you are a racist
But back to the "intent" portion of this experiment in word salad gymnastics. No one that Patterico would ever defend would claim that their "intent" was to be racist, it just doesn't happen like that. People like Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly, and Beck aren't going to say that they had "intent" while making racially charged statements. But does that lessen what they have said? According to this guy it completely clears them of all charges of racism.
So I guess these are the new ground rules for conservative speech - you can make a racist statement that you don't feel is racist, but is widely recognized as one, and as long as you claim your "intent" was justified then you can't be called a racist.
I think I've got a headache now.