Joe Biden notoriously characterized Barak Obama as "the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy."
Biden got away with it because Biden is a white liberal, and if you’re a white liberal bigot, you get a pass.
It’s not that Biden is consciously racist. What comes through is the subliminal racism. He has such low expectations for blacks that he’s impressed by someone like Obama, since Obama is an exception to his low expectations.
And this isn’t limited to Biden. This is typical of the white liberal establishment. It reacts the same way to Obama as Biden, although it’s not as indiscreet as Biden.
I don’t doubt that Obama is bright and articulate. He’s far more articulate than George Bush or John McCain, to take two examples. But he’s overrated.
Of the top of my head, I can think of three other black public speakers who strike me as being more intellectually nimble and verbally agile than Obama: John McWhorter, Tavis Smiley, and Marc Lamont Hill.
And that’s even before we compare him to a real heavyweight like Tom Sowell.
Or suppose we compare him to another Democrat politician: Bill Clinton. Honestly, who’s the more fluent speaker?
Obama’s good with a teleprompter, but he’s not good at ad libbing.
Obama is overrated because white liberals have such low expectations of blacks. And they clearly have a very limited exposure to “clean, bright, articulate” blacks, in Biden’s invidious comparison. They mainly associate with other white liberals.
For them, blacks are abstractions. They treat them like stray cats. Something to be taken in and fed and petted and nursed back to health by the liberal white veterinarian or pet-owner.