Why isn't this bigger news?

August 30, 2012

The most horrifying moment of this year’s Republican National convention didn’t happen onstage and did not involve any big names.

It was, instead, an off the cuff moment, in the margins, just moments before Ann Romney gave her big speech Tuesday. It involved two attendees — names unknown, delegate status unknown — and a CNN camerawoman since identified as Patricia Carrol.

It’s been more 48 hours since the incident and, so far, it appears to have been successfully buried by the RNC with CNN’s cooperation.

What happened?

According to Politics365.com and various other news outlets, sometime Tuesday, two convention attendees approached Carroll, who is an African-American, threw a handful of nuts at her, and said, “This is how we feed the animals.”

To the RNC’s credit, they immediately kicked out the two offenders. Did they offer an apology to the Carroll? I don’t know.

To CNN’s discredit, they have refused to follow up on the story. In fact, they didn’t even initially report the story: It was David Schuster of Current TV who tweeted about the incident.

Here's a report on CNN’s official statement on the matter on Tuesday: “CNN can confirm there was an incident directed at an employee inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum earlier this afternoon. CNN worked with convention officials to address this matter and will have no further comment." (Carroll told the Maynard Insitute she was hoping the story would go away.)

And that’s it.

Why in heaven’s name would CNN fail to continue its coverage of this very shameful racial episode?

Race is an integral part of this election — both good, in the surprisingly diverse convention line-up, and bad, as in the blatantly false race-baiting welfare ads currently running from the Romney/Ryan campaign.

Race is also an integral part of life in America, and on this planet. It absolutely matters what your race is, for good or bad, whether you’re obvious or not, whether you proudly wear it on your forehead or hang your head in shame, whether you willfully use it to your advantage or just sit back and let the advantages work for you, whether you actively fight against its disadvantages or surrender to them.

Two people went to the GOP convention this week and felt safe enough in those confines, and in that crowd, to approach a black woman and treat her like an animal.

That’s what happened.

Seriously, why isn’t that bigger news?