My fellow Americans, who are "your people"? I ask because U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who is black, used the phrase "my people" in congressional testimony this week. It was an unmistakably color-coded and exclusionary reference intended to deflect criticism of the Obama Justice Department's selective enforcement policies. It backfired.
In pandering to skin-deep identity politics and exacerbating race-consciousness, Holder has given the rest of us a golden opportunity to stand up, identify "our people" and show the liberal poseurs what post-racialism really looks like.
Herman Cain is my people. He's my brother-in-arms. I've never met him. But we are family. We are kin because we are unhyphenated Americans who are comfortable in the black, brown and yellow skin we are in. We are growing in numbers — on college campuses, in elected office, on the Internet, on public airwaves, everywhere. And that drives liberals mouth-frothing crazy.
Cain is the successful Georgia businessman who has wowed audiences across the country with his passion for free markets, free minds and the American Dream. The former president of Godfather's Pizza and forceful tea party speaker happens to be black. So he must pay the price that all minority conservatives in public life must pay. As I noted last week, a cowardly liberal writer recently derided Cain as a "monkey in the window," a "garbage pail kid" and a "minstrel" who performs for his "masters."
Race traitors. Whores. Sellouts. House Niggas. Self-haters. I've heard it for nearly 20 years in public life. Every outspoken minority conservative has. Sticks and stones may break our bones, but these spiteful epithets can't enslave us.
Val Prieto is my people. A fierce, freedom-loving American blogger of Cuban descent, he rejects race-card games and refuses to be lumped in with Hispanic ethnic grievance-mongers. In response to pro-illegal immigration marchers who infamously desecrated the American flag, Prieto wrote:
"I have never and will never, despite having many issues with the government of the United States throughout the years, burn a flag of the United States of America. I am Cuban by birth, American by the grace of God. And a darned proud, dignified, thankful and respectful American. ... I refuse to be lumped together as a class or a race simply because we speak a similar language. ... I ain't Mexican, I ain't Latino and I ain't Hispanic. I am an American of Cuban descent. And damned proud of it."
Katrina Pierson is my people. She's a feisty young Texas mom and Dallas tea party activist who supports limited government principles and rejects left-wing identity politics. She confronted the NAACP last year with a rousing manifesto of political independence and rebutted the left-wing group's attacks on the tea party as racist:
"The reality is that we colored people no longer require the assistance from other Negros for advancement," Pierson said. "These groups run to the rescue of distressed brown people only when the media deems it newsworthy. Meanwhile, there are inner city black children who continue to grow up fatherless while sharing a neighborhood with stray bullets, drugs and a plethora of liquor stores on every corner. ... I don't believe that the true meaning of this nation's creed was to move black people from one form of slavery to another."
The NAACP, she observed, is made up of "Democrats who bow to a Democrat master today as they once did over 200 years ago. Once this is realized by the forgotten society, race in this country will be as irrelevant as those who thrive off of it." Amen, sister.
Allen West, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and freshman congressman from Florida who happens to be black, is my people. Unafraid to skewer progressive sacred cows, he speaks boldly against global jihad and its Fifth Column enablers screaming "Islam-o-phobe!" West has also nailed the Congressional Black Caucus as "a monolithic voice that promotes these liberal social welfare policies and programs that are failing in the black community, that are preaching victimization and dependency; that's not the way that we should go."
According to U.S. News and World Report's Kenneth Walsh, President Obama told guests at a private White House dinner that he believed the tea party movement had a "subterranean agenda" of racism against him. But Lt. Col. West summed up the movement's transcendent, post-racial agenda forthrightly:
"The tea party is a constitutional, conservative grassroots movement — and that's it. The tea party stands for three things: They want to see effective, efficient constitutional government, they stand for national security, and they stand for free market, free enterprise solutions. That's it."
It's government of, by and for the people — all the people. Not just the ones still shackled by reflexive Democratic Party loyalty. We are beholden not to our skin pigment or ethnic tribes, but to American ideals, tradition, history and faith in the individual.
Three, two, one ... RAAAAACIST!
Michelle Malkin is the author of "Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies" (Regnery 2010). Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.