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June 16th, 2009
09:10 AM ET

Racist Email: Historic Photo?

A legislative aide for Tennessee state senator Diane Black (R-Gallatin) recently sent on an e-mail with this picture. The aide, Sherri Goforth says, “I went on the wrong e-mail and I inadvertently hit the wrong button.” Her boss gave her a reprimand, but some in the Tennessee black causus say Goforth should be fired. Tell us what you think.

Filed under: Tony Harris
soundoff (144 Responses)
  1. Dave Simmonds

    I am from jamaica,and i think it is good that the gov wants to get involved in healthcare.

    June 16, 2009 at 9:27 am |
  2. dan in Tucson AZ

    When blacks can find the humor in this pic, then we will have overcome racism. As long as these things are brought to our attention, racism will exist in our country. Get over it. Sticks and stones, remember?

    June 16, 2009 at 9:31 am |
  3. Ray Saint

    I guess we are losing our sense of humor in the USA. I think each of us has God given intellect to gauge and be stimulated or not! What a boring world this would be if we all laughed at growing grass. For me it looks like the lights are out in the WH for #44! Perhaps the cartoon could be ammended to feautre #43 as a monkey? Oops that has been done already! We are adults and I think we can handle this one. Don't like it, don't watch it! The explanation given by the original sender is hers! No need to get into her mind and second guess here.

    June 16, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  4. Carl Clark

    When given a couple of opportunities to explain the photo's implication she chose to admit to sending it to the wrong address. For me that response goes to intent of actual motive, personal choice of linking herself with a degrading photo with denegrading implications. Not an admirable trait in an elected official.

    June 16, 2009 at 10:30 am |
  5. Jenni Leeds in TN

    Dear dan in Tucson AZ,

    #1 No one, regardless of race, should find humor in this "picture."

    #2 The image was created and distributed *because* racism exists in our country – not because it was brought to our attention.

    You not a very smart man, Dan, but don't get mad at me for saying that. Sticks and stones, remember? 🙂

    As for what I think, I am appalled that one of our legislative staffers thought this was chuckle-worthy, and then had the gall to say she was sorry - for sending it to the wrong people. What the hell?!

    If that is how she views the President, I don't want her on our state payroll. I can only hope that she is fired.

    June 16, 2009 at 10:48 am |
  6. Steve Souza

    Come on America, Lighten Up! Get off your high horse and live and let live. There is nothing wrong with this type of free speech. We allow bankers, insurance agencies, and just about every sleazy big corporation to trick people into endless schemes with all kinds of false advertising, and you religious zealots out there have nothing better to do except complain about this??

    June 16, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  7. Tiffany

    The fact that she's only sorry for sending it to "the wrong group" and not sorry for sending the picture itself says it all, and for the people who see nothing wrong with this, glad to know the dog whistles are still working.

    If you don't think she should be fired for sending the picture, how about firing her for misuse of state computers? Doesn't she have an actual JOB to do?

    June 16, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  8. Amanda

    I think she needed to apologize much stronger than that. Same thing w/ Rusty DePass. He said he was just using Michelle Obama's words. Where is Palin condemning this "joke." Republicans are not doing a good job of showing America that they aren't just a bunch of racist white people.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  9. sheila in miami

    This 'comic' was a bit more over the top than I can deal with. I do hope we can one day make jokes about skin color as jokes and nothing more, but this is not that time, not in public.

    I have a few friends who get the funny, one on one, or in known groups, but publicly it is still and should be taboo.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  10. Ahmad

    Its not just a joke but one that reflects not only the senders ignorance but also her poor judgment. She should be fired. This coming from an aide to a legislator? Shameful. She should be made an example of.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:11 am |
  11. Larry

    Isn't this racial discrimination by a state employee?

    She should be fired!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  12. Michael Lewis

    No, the aid should not be fired for the picture. She should be fired for not doing her job.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  13. Mama Boats

    It is time that people like this realize that this is not acceptable in this country. She should be fired. Period. She represents her state and should show respect for her President – WHETHER she likes him or not. These continued racial comments and pictures should be stopped.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  14. Carson

    The aid that sent this picture to others should be either suspended or fired for this outrageous picture.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  15. Dawn-Atlanta

    Yes she should be fired for sending such racially offensive email through company system.
    It never ceases to amaze me how ignorant some people can be no matter how "smart" they are.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:12 am |
  16. Luke Jarrett

    One of the most difficult things to fix is "Stupidity". The aide's employer should have done better job interviewing this person.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  17. Julie Analini

    Fire the person who sent the email picture. There is no room for prejudice/discrimination in our country, and it should not be tollerated. Finally we have a President who is actually doing something for the people, lets not resort to immaturity and stupidity as well as crewlty!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  18. Brian Robinson

    The person shouldnt be fired for what they feel is right, however when hired as a public offical people should no if they are racist or not. Lets be honest racism is all around us, I would rather one be bold rather than undercover.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  19. jim

    TOTALLY rascist artwork by this staffer who works for the public. She should be fired with apology!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  20. Rita-Massachusetts

    That is one of the most ridiculous excuses I have heard. If she has nothing better to do than send out these types of e-mails, obviously her job is not necessary. She should go.....

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  21. Edward Moon

    I find it funny that everyone is so sensitive about racism... If we wouldn't freak out about every little thing, I mean this is not an ugly joke. In fact it is funny, and it doesn't hurt anyone. Loosen up and live your life a little. I feel so sorry for anyone who is this uptight. Is it alright to laugh at anything anymore?

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  22. ryan from wv

    This just goes to show that even in politics some would rather focus on irrelevant issues, such as race, rather than taking on real issues.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  23. Elizabeth Gahan

    She should be fired immediately.............there is no excuse for this kind of racism.........I received the same e-mail from racist people I know and I deleted it..........I think it's a disgrace, I have noticed all the people who are passing this around are Republicans..........

    June 16, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  24. Ifeoma

    I think people really need to understand the fact that with great power comes great have to understand the office/job you are in and act accordingly..I am not saying I find this "joke" funny but if it is circulated among friends that is a different story but from a work email to the wrong people...Bad Combination...people really need to take their work ethics class seriously!!!!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  25. Cheryl

    The person who sent this email should be fired on the spot. This is not what government employees should be doing at work. If senators allow this to go on in their offices I would really have to question their ability to serve ALL the people they represent.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  26. Andreams

    At least she wasn't hypocritical – no apology for sending it, just for sending it to the wrong people. I'm a white southern woman and used to be proud of it but people like this make me ashamed. Never in my lifetime have I seen racism so exposed as since our President was elected.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  27. Lynn

    I think this was not dealt with correctly.

    She did not apologize for emailing, she just apologized for being caught. As a employee of a state office, she should be terminated. A reprimand and a wink is insufficient.

    This sends a very bad message. It would not be tolerated in the private sector.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  28. Hubert Humbert

    I think the poster of this image should be in at least as much trouble as David Letterman is for his joke.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  29. Rosana

    Yes, that aide should be terminated- not for racism, for violating work policy on using electronic work tools for non-work-related activity!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:14 am |
  30. Barry

    This shouldn't even be a question as to the Legislative Aid's status. They should have been immediately fired. If the TN Legislator doesn't get ride of this person, he should be FIRED! A slap on the wrist just won't do. Off K Street

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  31. Erin in Kansas City

    I don't think it's about America 'losing' its sense of humor. It's more about making the work place hostile. In the courts regarding harassment, the law always recognizes effect than the intent of the person accused. The work place is not the place for this type of material, especially when it's being sent using company resources.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  32. Ryan

    Clearly that email/picture was in poor taste, however, why are we so quick to fire people? Why are Americans so sensative now a days?

    I just watched and CNN just reported that cancer has a higher death rate in blacks vs. whites. So I guess Cancer is racist and needs to be fired as well?

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  33. Michele Bernier

    If we use political correctness as a measure, and considering how many people have been "punished" by losing their positions for incorrect remarks, this person should be tarred and feathered and run out of town

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  34. Don

    I expect our elected officials and their staff to be on their best behavior at all times. The employee who handled the racist illustration should be terminated immediately.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  35. nan pearl

    Should be FIRED

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  36. Gil

    The fact that she prepared and/or had and forwarded this photo in this manner says something about this person's racial tendencies. If we don't act quickly and strongly on this type of behavior sends a message of tolerance for racist behaviors. If she's kept on staff, it sends that message about the staff as well.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  37. W.Hillman

    Sack her period .... using a Business / govt email for spam

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  38. Charles

    Too many other things to worry about, bad joke, just let it go (Hint Ms. Palin ).

    June 16, 2009 at 11:15 am |
  39. Deb Durham

    I'm appalled at the ignorance and lack of respect. This isn't funny. It's just stupid and juvenile. Obviously she's not "getting it" for being upset that it went to the wrong group instead of realizing that it was in poor taste to begin with. Her lack of understanding in that regard doesn't surprise me at all.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:16 am |
  40. Al Blair

    If Letterman will not be fired for offending teenage girls and mothers with a bad joke, then why should this aid be fired for just a joke against the President?

    June 16, 2009 at 11:16 am |
  41. Wm

    The E-mail, inappropriate. Should she have engaged in personal E-mails that can potentially offend at work? According to most organizations that value ethics, no. Should she be fired? No. She wasn't looking at porn or some other obviously inappropriate web content. It was an E-mail sent to her and she forwarded it to the wrong people. Now, her coworkers will know a little more about her opinions and style of humor than perhaps she will appreciate. But hey, when you play at work, don't be shocked if you're caught. Did she by chance add a caption condemning or praising the picture?

    June 16, 2009 at 11:16 am |
  42. Jamila

    She should be fired, no questions asked. He's our commander in chief. Their should be a little more respect for the president in the white house. If the comment was about George Bush and the employee was black, we wouldn't even hear about it. They would probably already be fired. Equality for all people.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:16 am |
  43. BH in LA

    The next time we wonder how racism comes to still exist in a government supposedly dedicated to its elimination, I suggest we consider that Senator Black (and yes, the name does seem ironic)...that Senator Black didn't see fit to fire her aide on the spot.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  44. Kevin Smith

    I think that if someone sent out a picture joking around about the white presidents nothing would come of it, it would not even make the news. I bet that even Obama got a laugh at this picture, people just need to relax, making a big deal of this picture just causes racism.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  45. Nancy in California

    She should be fired. There shouldn't even be a question about that. What the H–fL are we thinking if we let things like this slide? How much time did she spend putting this crap together when she should have been working? How do tax payers in Tenesseee feel about how their tax dollars are being spent? When I worked for government and in the private sector, I would have been fired for using the company's property for personal use. She thinks this is funny, but there is no humor in racism. Period.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  46. lisa K

    Just reinforces the general public's(and my) view of the white south and white southerners being racist and stupid. She sent this to "the WRONG" people? Wow! Think she should get fired not just for being a card carrying racist but, for being incredibly stupid as well. I'd think her boss might at least care about the latter.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  47. Diana

    That is wrong and completely immature, but I guess that's what freedom of speach is...
    Why not put all those white presidents as white boxes with eye balls?
    It's the same conception.
    People need to grow up, this president is just tanner then all the other presidents.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  48. Suzanne Hagen

    The aid should be fired without question. There is no humor in and no excuse for that poster. And of course it is meant to be racist. Whatever else could be inferred from it? The aid needs to go!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  49. Kim Kilbourn

    I guess it's one thing for a memeber of the public to send something to someone that is clearly racist, however disgusting it might be. But this is a person who works in a government setting as a legislative aide. This is a no brainer as far as I'm concerned. She should be fired immediately. Period. (I am a 59 year old white guy by the way).

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  50. Vince Bochicchio

    It is a disgrace and she MUST be fired

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  51. Alan

    This is easy. Review the policies for sending/receiving emails. If the employee acted in contradiction with the policy, then appropriate action should be taken. Personally, I find it offensive and tasteless. If all the other prez'z pictures were some sort of caricature, then it would be a different story. But because Obama was singled out, it is without question racist.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  52. matt

    How is this racism? Is it derogatory for someone to point out that an individual with a darker complexion can sometimes not appear in pictures if the lighting is not adequate?

    It's similar to someone pretending they are blinded by their irish friend out in the sunlight because of how white they are. People need to lighten up and get over it.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  53. priacilla

    This aide should be fired! For those who don't beleive so must be racist themselves, but these days it appeasrs to be a popular thing to be. This email is an insult to all black people.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  54. Jesse Hamric

    I think that this is typical "political correctness" having a spasm over a simple joke. Big freaking deal he isn't even that dark so it's not funny anyway. I think it was a simple joke, a lame joke at that, but still just a joke.

    JennI Leeds, you make me sick.

    #1 – Who are you to say who finds humor in a picture? We are all different races and backgrounds, there is nothing wrong with light humor picking fun at races. If someone sent a joke about white people not being able to dance then people would laugh and think nothing of it. So then why is this such a big deal?

    #2 – If you view racism as any joke aimed at a specific group of people then your view is flawed. Nearly 99% of all jokes are aimed at a certain type of people. So are all comedians also racist against fat people, midgets, mexicans, white people, ect? If you are saying that a joke should never be aimed at a certain type of people, you might as well say no American should ever make a joke.

    You say Dan isn't smart but you yourself look like another uptight liberal, that would likely attend a tea party with Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton and gossip about the mean white people, while condeming a simple joke.

    Then you go as far as to say she was wrong for apologizing? What do you expect? She saw something funny and wanted to show some friends. She apologized because people like you gave her no choice, and actually suggested she loose her job and the means to feed her family over something so menial.

    And as far as how she views the President, that image had NOTHING to do with her view of the President. He is black, that is a fact, not a view. You know nothing about how she personally feels about him.

    Get off your high horse, have a beer, and lighten up.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  55. Wayne K. Portlock

    The Aid should be fired. There should be no questions asked. This is inappropriate behavior for any person working in a public, state or government related office. The larger crime is that this is related to the man that the country elected.

    It is a slap in the face to the majority of people in the country who elected our now President.

    Fire this person(s) involved, no explanation, no apology. Usher him or her out the door, now.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:18 am |
  56. Trinity

    At some point we have to stop being numb to nonesense like this and become outraged. It's not funny and whomever thinks it is funny is as ignorant as the person who set the email in the first place. When people were dumping on Bush for one reason or another, Bush lovers were appalled, now this mess surfaces time and time again about President Obama and you call it humor. Are you serious?!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:19 am |
  57. Jay

    Really, give it a rest. With all of the problems in the country and the world, CNN has to focus on a picture that will cause arguements? 10% of the U.S. population is African-Am - yet we are constantly being subjected to this type of trivia that is clearly designed to cause division within our own country. PLEASE - knock it OFF.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:19 am |
  58. Shari

    I am appalled that this woman was not fired. It is obvious that she is racist. How are we ever going to get past racism? We won't if if this kind of thing keeps happening. I wish I knew who it was so I could do something about it.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:20 am |
  59. Jennifer

    People need to grow up. That picture is uncalled for and I cannot believe that a person's aid had the audacity to even send this email out. It shows you the kind of people that run our states. Quite frankly I am tired of the jokes and the ignorance that runs through out our country and even in the highest ranking positions of the United States. GROW UP!!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:21 am |
  60. Ron Ortines

    Very distasteful humor. This is even disrespectful to President Obama. When will we start focusing on real issues instead of color? Humor like this is a waste of time but knowing that this type of humor exist gives even more reason to fight racism. Why even bother with humor like this. Don't comics understand that they risk their career? It's not even worth it. This is just a form of passive racism that comics expect attention. Great, you're now well-known. I'll see you in the unemployment line!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:21 am |

    Is the glass 1/2 empty of 1/2 full? It's all about perception! I perceive this picture of OBAMA in darkness as...YES, the light does shine through the darkness! As a matter of fact, the light from within a soul can liberate and break the mental shackles many folks wear! Live free, Live under the Sonlight: )

    – John "QGODFEAR" Chapple

    June 16, 2009 at 11:21 am |
  62. Jacob

    The one problem i have with this is that it is racist and it is pretty funny everyone knows it the fact that it was a white person who did it and its a black president its racist we all know this stuff is going on still to this day get over it guys your not kids any more the thing that im upset about is that she got caught how dumb do you have to be and since she got caught she should be fired for it because she is on the gov. payroll she should have other important things to do besides come up with tacky BUT funny pictures now what the gov. is going to alow orgies in congress hall or what this is why our country is where it is today grow up and stop passing notes and do your work

    June 16, 2009 at 11:22 am |
  63. m Thomson

    I find it highly offensive. It is acts such as this that encourage racism and heinous crimes such as that in the Holocaust museum last week. races. I would fire this insensitive and ignorant employee.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:24 am |
  64. George

    It is nothing short of an evil passion that makes nonwhites and self-hating whites want this woman's scalp.

    Fools, you are laying the foundation for civil war.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:25 am |
  65. Andrea

    That is totally reprehensibile and disrespectful. This is the President of the United States. I do not see the joke in this but the message she is sending is very direct and clear. But then again I can see her ignorance. Must be representative of the people around her to foster such a "joke" “I went on the wrong e-mail and I inadvertently hit the wrong button.” I beleive every person know who is on their email list. And for her to get a tap on the hand is ridiculous. Can you imagine if the tables were turned and Black person were to perpetrate a joke of such, it would be a a different scenario.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:26 am |
  66. Sandy

    State Senator Black is a public servant and as a public servant she has a responsibility to encourage and support a movement of respect for the President and for all races. Regardless of whether this degrading depiction should have been viewed privately or mistakenly viewed publicly, it is a disgrace and it condones racism in a seat you were elected to, by all races.

    Shame, shame Sen. Black for not following up this reprimand with a letter of resignation.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:26 am |
  67. D.

    A person in the position of leadership should not be sending out racist e-mails. This is a person that is paid by some of these "black people's" taxes. She should be fired on the spot as if it were sexual harassment.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:26 am |
  68. Carol Wiese

    In my opinion a person who would construct or even forward such an indictment of ignorance hasn't any place in any form of government whatsoever. The TN state senator who made the judgement to reprimand instead of fire the aide has now shown a severe lack of judgement as well. I'm embarassed that my gender could produce such stupidity and lack of respect.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:27 am |
  69. Tony Larue


    I am Tony from Toronto, canada.

    It will never stop. If you think this racist cancer would stop after the US elected a black President,think again,thiunk again.

    Some people both men and women even some panelist on CNN refer to the former President as President Bush but refer to the present president as Obama. There is no respect for the black man.

    One of these days the black man will finally wake up and at that time we all should pray for a divine intervention.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  70. Mitch Brown

    You know, it seem to me that any body can say anything they would like to say which is find, but intent seems to hurt someone and then immediately wants to plea the first amendment. I personally don't think that our fore-fathers intent for you to go around and hurt people and then say "oh, that's my constitutional right, bull. People interpret the Bible to suit their evil deeds, just as much as they interpret the Constitution to suit their perverted needs. Don't use the Constitution nor the Bible to justify your evil and aspect it to be glorified for your actions. Fire her, she should know better, people have feelings.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  71. Patricia G.

    The aide Sherri Goforth should have been fired as soon as her email was viewed. It isn't funny. It's insulting and reveals the aide's personal opinions, prejudices and lack of respect. She probably thought it was funny or insulting. Instead, she revealed her ignorance and ignorant prejudices. She and her ideas do not belong in the government of the best country in the world. She must be fired and can return to the home where she came from and learned her disgusting prejudices. God Bless the Obama family and the USA. WHY WASN'T SHERRI GOFORTH FIRED IMMEDIATELY?? She needs to go back.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  72. Patrick

    Recently there was some negative interaction in Montana about American Indians and the racist tones that exist. When I saw this picture of the presidents and the representation of President Obama with a set of white eyes in a black background this is what I see a lot with American Indians and the degree of insensitivity that exist. Enough I say. Folks who do things like this ought to be reprimanded and asked to leave their post immediately. One cannot legislate change but can help to eliminate negative interaction when and where it happens.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  73. mountain man steve

    get a life peeps this is a classic bit of comedy... we all do things in our privet lives the really do not reflect who we are

    betcha Mr. Obama got a laugh @ this it is great

    all i can say is shame on you who are so quick to condem

    take your shoes off and walk in the grass, smell the flowers and find a rainbow

    June 16, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  74. Grace

    I think this is a very gross act by this aide. And it is sad she is lying through her teeth saying she hit the wrong buttons many times in a row; viewing the e-mail,hitting the 'forward button' and hitting the 'send button' , all without being aware of what she was doing?..That is so untrue!..Such flippant excuses should not be accepted..She should be let off so she understands truly the gravity of her action. Maybe that would help dissuade others from being disrespectful to other human beings.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  75. richard

    Tony, they need to fire the racist who allowed the original racist to keep their job. Those responsible should be terminated immediately and anyone else who thinks this is funny. They might as well just called him the "N" word!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:33 am |
  76. Bruno Davidson

    Having people find this kind of humor funny only prove that racism is as strong as it was in the past. What a shame. Some presidents and most recently G.W. Bush were called and portrayed as many things because of their decisions, not their race. If you have never been subject to racism or any other kind of discrimination you will never understand. NEVER!!!

    June 16, 2009 at 11:36 am |
  77. Carolyn

    She should be fired! When one condones wrong doing, it means that he or she agrees with the wrong doing. I made phone calls during President Obama's campaign and I heard plenty of racist remarks.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:37 am |
  78. Ruben

    ...What about all the racist email traveling through cyber-space that goes undetected because the sender did not "hit the wrong key..?"

    June 16, 2009 at 11:38 am |
  79. Sarah Al-Zubi

    Racism has played a large part in this country, for way too long. The aide should be fired. The aides e-mail will tarnish the seat of Senator Black, she is sitting back and not doing anything about it. Just goes to show how quietly the bigots are, sitting in their senate seats making decisions about this country. This is shameful and disrespectful and shows you what this Senator is really about.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:38 am |
  80. George & Barbara

    We are disappointed and insulted that anyone would insult our "MY" president like thiis. Just imagine the insult to his children. I hope it is not brought to their attention. The writer should be SEVERELY reprimanded if not fired.

    Senior caucasion parents & grandparents

    June 16, 2009 at 11:42 am |
  81. SKIP

    It's not racist, unless the intent to be so was there. The googly eyes reminded me of 2 things: Geico & The Alice in Wonderland Chesire Cat; which makes you wonder exactly where down the rabbit hole this president is taking us???

    June 16, 2009 at 11:44 am |
  82. Jay

    Fired?? Are you nuts? This was a joke. Some find it funny, some don't. There is so much of this crap on the internet in all directions regarding all races and nationalities - does everyone get fired?

    My Polish friend told me the funniest Polish jokes - now everyone one is walking on egg shells. Dumb, dumb, dumb. Let's get past second grade name calling and move on to creating a better place for all to live. This whole discussion can be blamed on CNN who decided to make this an issue...they could have talked about the fact that the government has spent our great great grandchildren's money, but NO, it has to be this racist issue AGAIN.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:45 am |
  83. Patricia G.

    an after thought....about the aide AND her Senator
    Stupid is as stupid does.
    I'm sure that both of them are prejudiced and annoyed by the extraordinary successful story about Barack Obama's life, impressive education, and success story.
    That the aide was not fired immediately reflects the feelings of the Senator from TN. Good.
    That Barack Obama and Michell have achieved so much in their young lives reflects their intelligence, drive and assistance by their families. I am an American who is proud of the first family.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:45 am |
  84. Elizabeth Jones

    Dear Tony,
    Yes, Sherri Goforth of Tennessee should absolutely be fired. On June 12, a gorilla escaped from the Riverbanks Zoo in Columbia, SC. Minutes after the escape was reported, Rusty Depass, former SC Election Commission Chairman and former Chairman of the Richland County (SC) Republican Party posted this statement on Facebook: "I'm sure it's just one of Michelle's ancestors-probably harmless." When Barack Obama was elected President, I braced myself for the racist jokes and comments that would follow. However, the length of time that this venom has lasted, and the shameful nature of it all, has surpassed my expectations. It is time for all Americans to display the grace and intelligence which our President does on a daily basis. I am a white 58-year-old high school teacher.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:46 am |
  85. Lee, New York

    If this were somehow an inadvertently made mistake by an otherwise well intended aide. It would be a different story. However. The aide did this intentionally to debase the President of the USA, all past Prseidents of the USA and the American people in general. With the recent Holocaust Meseum killing this aide exhibits a prejudicial position which needs to be stopped.

    June 16, 2009 at 11:55 am |
  86. Sunshine

    What ignorance. For that aid to send such an email, to anyone, speaks to her state of mind when it comes to racism. It's both unexcusable and unexceptable for that aid to send such blatant KKK messages over government computers and she should be fired. And for her boss to condone such activity such as that racist picture portraying the President of the United States, she too should be terminated. Racism needs to be dealt with as its found, especially when done by government employees.
    You know its time to quell racism in the boardrooms.

    June 16, 2009 at 12:05 pm |
  87. Patricia G.

    To Jesse Hamrick...your verbal attack on Jenni Leeds reveals a lot about YOU. Dan in "Tucson", AZ, Steve Sousa, mountain man and you should all get together for the beer and light up another doobie around the campfire.

    June 16, 2009 at 12:08 pm |
  88. Sandy

    I would like to interview for this position since "no tolerance" for this despictable behavior should ever be tolerated by an "elected" official or anyone for that matter.

    I assure you, Sen. Black, I will not be so ignorant and irresponsible as your current aide who circulated this incomprehensible depiction of race. I am currently unemployed and have many years of public/media relations with hands on life and work experiences. I don"t participate or condone such ignorance...ever. I think you might need me.

    June 16, 2009 at 12:10 pm |
  89. Renee - Virginia, USA

    Ryan said "This just goes to show that even in politics some would rather focus on irrelevant issues, such as race, rather than taking on real issues."

    Race IS a real issue in our country. I live in a mixed-race household, I would know.

    It's true that this picture itself isn't a "big deal", but it is an example of someone that was (I assume) qualified enough to be paid to work in a Senate office making poor-taste jokes about the color of our President's skin from her office email. Completely unnecessary and rude.

    She was using her office resources (likely taxpayer-paid) to send out an email with the purpose of pointing out Obama's race for a laugh – yes, she should be fired and that job should be given to someone that appreciates its power and uses it for good.

    June 16, 2009 at 12:44 pm |
  90. Jerry

    AHAHAHAHAhahahaha~~~ That's just TOOOO funny!!!! AHAHAHAHAhahahaha

    June 16, 2009 at 12:52 pm |
  91. regina

    every now and then racist lifts their ugly heads from under the rocks, throw pebbles in hope that it will make a ripple effect, and hide their hands and blame someone else.. those old racist feelings seem to never die.

    June 16, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  92. Ivy T

    I myself believe the picture is funny, not to be taken seriously. I think if you're offended by this you need to lighten up. BUT, it was a bad choice to send the email out of the office. If there is any wrong-doing it was not realizing that BECAUSE it was from a Senate office people would be offended. If it had been from, let's say, Chris Rock's email, or Kathy Griffin, we'd be sharing a collective chuckle.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:00 pm |
  93. TonyB

    Are you people kidding me. I'm tired of people.... ok.... I'm tired of certain people doing and saying racist things and then using the excuse that we should be past it now. "OMG, I can't believe you are mad at me making racist jokes about you... I mean our President is black so it's all OK now."

    June 16, 2009 at 1:01 pm |
  94. Heidi

    That is ridicules of someone of her so called standers, she is nothing but a BIT*H ( Diane Black ). She does not represent the white people that is not at all funny. She should be fired right away.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  95. andy (los angeles)

    this is NOT news! CNN is stoking racism and hatred by airing this story. some random state legislative aide sends a stupid email that can be construed as racist and CNN makes a STORY out of it? can't you see the bigger picture, CNN? can't you see that NOBODY would even know about this pointless little episode if you didn't air it? that there would be LESS racism and hatred in this country if you didn't call attention to every little sensationalistic anecdote? CNN, you are GUILTY of promoting racism, whether you like it or not.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:06 pm |
  96. Robert H Sarasota, Florida

    In the context of comedy, it's mildly humorus. In the context of Government – it's intolerable. This staffer is an idiot and was rightly reprimanded – she should feel lucky she wasn't fired. Perhaps a suspension for a week without pay could even be warranted. What's more is there should be an investigation into who sent it to her and if it was another staffer that person should be reprimanded as well.

    We have protected speech in the US and as such these people may send things like this all night long to their friends AFTER work and NOT from Gov't equipment. But I don't get the "racist" vibe from this picture – it's just silly. Truth is our President is Black and in the dark it could be argued that Black folks have a camoflage advantage over whites. Now, had it been a picture of a monkey then I would be disgusted by it and would definitly see it as racist.

    The bottom line is this does not belong in the Gov't workplace – or any workplace for that matter. But what more people should be outraged at is the report that Doctors, when presented with two identical patient files – one with a picture of a white man and one with a pic of a black man – the Doctors have been shown to provide a higher level of car to the white patient – now THAT is racism and THAT is outrageous.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  97. Kevin Leo

    dan in Tuscon, AZ said "When blacks can find the humor in this pic, then we will have overcome racism. As long as these things are brought to our attention, racism will exist in our country. Get over it. Sticks and stones, remember?"

    The problem dan is that we do remember sticks and stones, the ones used to beat our ancestors, family, and friends for no other reason than the fact that our skin color was darker than yours. We remember how we were considered to be less than human and subject to lynching and traded arounded like property. We remember these things not becuase they bring us joy but because of the ignorance of others who constantly remind us that no matter how far we have come, there are those who would to go back to those days.

    When racist photos, comments, and e-mails are circulated around like this, especially from the offices of elected officials, it just stokes those flames of ignorance. A number of cariactures have been done on George Bush's time as president, none that I am aware of attacked his race or painted him as non-human. Far too frequently, we have seen this very thing done of Obama.

    We would love to "get over it" and find the humor in these things but some memories are too painful and not every joke is funny.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  98. Mikki Speller

    By only reprimanding Sherri Gorforth for that disgusting email, Senator Diane Black is condoning this behavior and it obviously isn't a big deal to her. Not only should Gorforth be fired, but Sen. Black should consider resigning. Her attitude is just as bad as Gorforth's.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  99. wishful thinking

    Yeah...this is becoming a consistent "bowel movement of the mouths & minds" of the never-dying racists. South Carolina–no better...senator says escape gorilla is ancestor of Michelle Obama. As much as I wish that racism would disappear forever, I don't think it ever will. For those who think it doesn't exsist, just checkout ANY blog that has anything to do with the President or the First Lady. If you want to see who & what fuels them even more, just watch Hannity & Limbaugh. We need not worry so much about terrorists from other countries...we have some of the worsts right here, born & raised in the U.S. (& they watch FOX NEWS, HANNITY, & listen to LIMBAUGH.) How in the world can someone publicly say that they hope our President fails & they be looked upon as a "stand-up" guy by some & a U.S. citizen??? If our President fails, then we ALL fail! I think that if that character, along with some of his lovers (i.e. Hannity, Coulter, etc.) is voted into a political office anywhere, this country will see slavery all over again (Ron Christie will be fine, though...he'll be inside.)

    June 16, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  100. Frank

    I love the selective outrage from the left. As soon as you on the left show outrage when a conservative person is attacked I will show outrage when a liberal is attacked. Until then too bad.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:18 pm |
  101. Langston

    I think that person should be fired because African Americans were literally killed just for their color. People like that woman is why that 88 year old man killed the innocent guard at the Museum in Washington. Will this country wait on her to bubble over with rage by murdering people before anything is done !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I think it should be treason to disrespect the President that way.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  102. Jeff

    Yes the picture is racist. But, racist, sexist, off color jokes and pictures have been around alot longer than we have or will be. If you dont like it say so and dont look. This president is the least respected I have ever seen by the black community. So lets not go pointing fingers and firing people for passing along something they find as funny. But, instead voice you're dislike of poor taste and lack of respect for a world leader. If you want to talk about lack of respect for a president look at the girl that got by with butt bumping the president, or the man that pointed at him while he was standing in line at an ice cream store and come here fingered him. That and other things I've seen in the news done in public, not in a private e-mail that some one was snooping in, is what I call very disrespectful and in poor taste. Those things were public but you don't see any one blogging those rude guestures.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  103. Larry

    For the first time in my lifetime we have a President who cares more about this country than his own political aspirations, and this is the way he's treated?

    Some people's hatred and stupidity is immeasurable.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  104. donald martin

    Should I say I am not surprise she is republican and in Tennesse? For those two reasons alone I would say she meant to send the e-mail and she is racist and she should be fired, as well as the person who decided to keep her on their team. it sucks!!!

    June 16, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  105. Cheri

    There is no "humor" in that picture! None at all. I'm apalled that anyone thinks it's appropriate in private but on the job...? It's not only offensive it's stupid!! And in a Senate office it should be an immediately firable offense. All this bigot has done is solidified the image of a racist South and Republican hate. Anone who finds this "funny" should have the courage to step and admit their racism instead of hiding it behind "humor".

    June 16, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  106. Imani

    The aide for Tennessee state senator Diane Black should have been fired on the spot - regardless of his work performance. The sheer fact that the U.S. Federal Workforce statistics indicate that only 18% or fewer African Americans are federal employees, who work in demeaning and lower grade positions than White American federal employees with nearly 70%, gives the perception that racism against African Americans is alive and well. African Americans will never get over racism in this country when they are constantly confronted with racist behavior.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:40 pm |
  107. Andi

    To all of those who seem to think this is funny and if we don't think so we don't have a sense of humor:

    Could one of you please post an explanation to the joke and what is the 'funny' part, because I don't get it. Looks to me the joke is they don't want a black guy in the picture? Sorry, I guess I'm too stupid to be a bigot.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:41 pm |
  108. Andi

    Al Blair: David Letterman is a COMEDIAN. He gets paid to make jokes, and sometimes jokes offend people. This woman is an AIDE TO THE CHAIR OF THE REPUBLICAN CAUCUS IN TENNESSEE. If you don't see the difference, you will never agree with anyone on anything. Letterman isn't looking for votes, this woman's boss is. Go figure.

    June 16, 2009 at 1:45 pm |
  109. sseed13

    The person that sent the hate e-mail from the Tenn. office should be fired immediately. Is hate e-mail or hate mail legal? Since the fossil record shows mankind's development came from Africa, The true Eve is African. So racism toward people of African descent means they hate the entire Human family.


    June 16, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  110. Paula

    Wow, someone thinks this picture is funny? Offensive yes, funny no!

    June 16, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  111. hani

    as long as democrates and the president don't allow the tort reform to pass and stop the trial lawyers who are the fundraiser machines for the democratic party to stop from making billions of dollars from frivolous law suits all these health care discussion is pointless and hypocrtical.
    it is amazing how the president blinds his eyes on it as it is not an issue during his meeting with the AMA on monday.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:18 pm |
  112. hani

    The president is lying to the nation and he cares more about his relection then cares about patiients.
    he is destroying the best health care system in the world by turning it into another dysfuctional, unaccountable, bureaucrtic VA health care system, look at VA care and you will know what it will be under the goverment care, it is a no good care system

    June 16, 2009 at 2:22 pm |
  113. Lloyd Wilson

    This is absolutely apauling. If this had happened at any other place besides int he government, for example, in private corporaitons, the person who did this would be fired and their boss would and should be demoted or fired as well. I don't care if this person worked there for fifty years and has a spotless record. This goes beyond the President and speaks directly to the fact those involved in this have NO PLACE in a goverment position that I am paying for with my taxes. As for the President, yes, it absolutely offensive, horrible and intolerable. It takes a special kind of igorance, stupidity and declasee to do something like this. Just goes to show we have a long way to go still in the country as we profess "freedom means freedom for all."
    Aabsolutley disgusting and I hope this %^$^& is fired without any benefits whatsoever. And ya know what, this person has most likely passed these feelings of hatred onto their children, if they have any. The clincher is this: "I sent it to the wrong person...." How in God's name does that make any freakin' difference. Hatred is Hatred is Hatred.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:31 pm |
  114. Jennifer Pruitt

    Racism is alive and well in Alabama, I recently divorced my husband of 6 years, when he informed that one night he came home, he works 2nd shift and caught my daughter and her African-American boyfriend, kissing. She's 19, going to college and works, responsible young lady, I am very proud of her, straight A's even! He told me that he almost went into our room, and get his deer rifle and kill us all. OMG! I asked him to leave, I packed belongings, and I filed for divorce the next day. It was always the money, and his drinking beer over other things, but this was too much. I recall now, things that he has said, that I didn't like, but this kind of talk is evil and hate. Killing someone because you don't like what they do/are. Why can't people just mind their own business, and get along.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:36 pm |
  115. Momo


    June 16, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  116. Jennifer Pruitt

    This offends me and she should be fired....

    June 16, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  117. stephanie jones

    She should be fired. There is zero tolerence for racism.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  118. elise

    I don't think the aide would have done this if she didn't work in a culture that promoted such racist behavior. I think that this is very telling of the GOP.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  119. David Lee

    Diane Black is protecting her friend. She doesn't think that such conduct should rise to the level of firing her friend. She is just as racist.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  120. Rev. Lou

    Tony, this picture of President Obama is a disgrace but remember this is Tennessee.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:48 pm |
  121. LYNN

    She should be is obvious she is not busy enough with real work.........our President regardless of party should be respected and this is not funny. I received this email from the same Republican friends who sent out horrible racist jokes and pictures during our election....get over it, he won..the same thing you told us when Pres Bush won (Oh he didn'
    t really , the Supreme Court gave him the election when Al Gore won the popular vote). We had to get over it, now lets give our new President a chance and save the jokes for the next election when hopefully we will still have a sense of humor.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  122. Eileen

    Senator Diane Black completely missed the point in that interview. Had she simply fired the aide, she'd be a hero. Instead, by making countless references to "HR" and "HR Guidelines" she looks like someone who either can't stand up for herself, or doesn't think that what the aide did is actually a problem. Seriously, what's the worst that "HR" could do to her – she's a Senator, for God's sake. By responding the way she has, she's effectively painted a target on her chest and will now have to answer not only for what her aide did – but for every other racist action that the Tennessee Republican Party has taken in the past year. I won't be surprised if it costs her her job, and I won't be saddened if it does.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  123. Dan and Florida

    What a phony, racist hypocrite this Rep. is!! She represents one of the most racist states in the U.S. as her supporters' responses about this outrageous email further document. What difference does it make whether or not an employee has a stellar work record?! If this "stellar" employee murdered a fellow employee on the job would her work record make the employee less dead? Yes, George Bush was made fun of as all presidents are, but I don't recall him being depicted in a white robe and matching hood. This employee's actions were inexcusible and reprehensible and Rep. Black's explanation of her "non-action" merely serves as an enabling mode to excuse racism.

    June 16, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  124. James

    It be different if she sent it from her "HOME" computer but she sent it from "A State Owned Computer"...should be fired on the spot. Does the state of TN condone hate mail???

    Apparently because she still has her JOB!!!! But its TN what do you expect...people there are slow and dumb.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  125. Dan and Florida


    This is a big reason WHY we have many problems!!

    June 16, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  126. Embarrassed to be a Republican right now

    Come on people, Letterman is a comedian paid by CBS, the staffer is a Gov worker paid by us, to send hateful and prejudice "KKK like jokes " about our President on our time, i don't think so.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  127. Jon H

    Clearly it is racist. Only a racist or a liar would say otherwise.

    The "Excuse" is if not the lamest is among the worst I have ever seen. I was an officer in a responsible , non-government office where a middle manager distributed a Mexican-lawncare-worker joke email. This person was responsible for employment and development of Mexican American employees and was summarily dismissed. What reasonable person would conclude she handled the affairs of the company in a responsible manner in light of forwarding racist material for a group she was directly involved with? None.

    In a day when almost no one will commit an overtly racist act. These sneaking racist lowlifes are still around. The Congressman assistant is one to act or say otherwise is to concur with their racist act.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  128. Sandy

    Diane Black took a cop-out directed by her "HR" Department. I have seen this many times in business and media relations and worked in this field many years. In order to get out of a messy media relations issue, HR tells the targeted person to "blame" them on why this "exemplary" employee is not fired and make excuses or redirect blame. However, there is no one in HR willing to go public and support this decision not to terminate, is there?

    Who is HR for Diane Black? It must be the legislative branch in some sense...and why are they making exception for "anyone" who tolerates intolerance knowingly or not. Diane Black is an elected official period. There is no excuse in defending this action or staff. Terminate.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  129. Rosita

    Your question is "what if this dictator is a real winer?"I am surprised to see u talking about it exactly when media gets baned. Don't u think u r following the Iranian government? The government which answers its educated young generation with tear gas and bullets.
    I have some words for Ken Ballen, u even can not pronounce this dictator's name correctly, the question is , if it was not rigged, what makes them so scared to get armed and attacked students ? I want you to answer me.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  130. Bill

    I am wondering, just how did the news media get hold of this? I think the person that brought this to the media's attention should be fired! Enough said.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  131. Shari, Florida

    First Rusty DePass–an old white southern republican male-racist-misogynist-xenophobe-homophobe–that's all of the ist's and phobe's I can think of right now. (Misanthrope?) Disgusting, but not surprising-I've been subjected to this kind of intolerant behavior all of my life, much to my distaste. Now here we go again–the floodgates are opening.

    I was born and have lived in the southeastern US my entire life; my parents and all of my relatives are from/live in the (New England) northeastern US, so I have been exposed to the social norms of both areas. Yes, there are racially tolerant and intolerant people in both places, just like there is ignorance and hatred in both places. But it still amazes me how often I encounter people in my home state & the rest of the SE US who think it's perfectly appropriate to openly share racially intolerant comments, jokes, behaviors, etc., with people that they know little more about than that there is a shared white skin color. I've been subjected to this behavior from my customers in a business environment; the idiot standing behind me in a grocery store checkout; someone I informally chatted with at a social gathering. It's shocking and shockingly stupid–it never occurs to these people that just because I have a caucasian appearance I'm in agreement with them. They don't even stop to think I may have a parent-sibling-spouse-partner-child of a different racial background at home. It's like some sort of open secret-a Gentlemen's Agreement, you might say (movie about anti-semitism from late 1940's) and it's disgusting that it is still so prevalent...and yes, it's ratcheted up since there became any chance that Barack Obama might become the President.

    Prejudice is a result of one of two things: ignorance or hatred. Ignorance can sometimes be cured–with education. Hatred has no cure that I know of....and I would imagine that in order to qualify for a job as the aide to a state senator, one would need to be well-educated. But even that is questionable, given the caliber of the "I went on the wrong email and I inadvertantly hit the wrong button" response. What? She STILL can't handle email? Heck, I wouldn't hire her. A very wise person I know has a saying for situations like this: "people (can be) educated beyond their intellect".

    The aide needs to go. As a person, she behaved abominably when she distributed that type of content. As an employee, she behaved inappropriately when she used her employer's technology for personal use. As a public servant, she should be held to a higher standard of behavior for the privilege of holding a position of such responsibility to her fellow citizens. That's three strikes–and you're out, sugar pie.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  132. lynessa

    oh come on people get a since of humor. Im half black and i have to say that was the funniest thing i've seen all day. There is hummor behind makeing fun of presidents, for instance, when bush was in office people made jokes about him and alchol, how dumb he sounded when speaking, also him on crack , as well there were even photos on the internet makeing fun of him. let me ask you this, is there really that big of diffrence? No one made a big deal about the humors attacks made to previous presidents. Now that we have a MIXED president (may i remind the american people) we have to make sure we as americans watch what we say or do because it may offened the government! SCREW THAT!!!! Get of this ladies case it was harmless its not like shes the first person to come up with something like or similuar to the photo, shes just the first person to expose it with in the government and if i might add make news.

    June 16, 2009 at 3:43 pm |
  133. No name

    Sick. Sick. Sick. My view is that this picture is very reflective of Mrs. Black , office. Her approach in " consulting" with her HR office in how to discipline her RACIST staff is even more disturbing. If this guy was my staff he will have his *** fired ,immediately.


    People behavior can be changed, but race can't. Bush was a crack head by choice. His stupidity most likely was not. but never than less ,the picture was not reflective of Obama's negative behavior, but instead of what black's office perceives as the president " negative race". so... I do not understand your point, nor I believe that you are half black. " Half blacks " would not make such a stupid comparison.

    June 16, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  134. dia

    how can you laugh at something that is ignorant and childish. he's the 44th president of the united states. accept it , i mean i had to go through eight years with a dummy. if you wanted humor you should've added strings to the 43th president. now that's funny

    June 16, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  135. Elizabeth Jones

    to CNN staff
    re: my previous blog

    Is it still awaiting moderation or has it been posted? I was already mad about Rusty Depass. This thing with the Tennessee Senate aide made me lose my usual calm demeanor! A few days after the Presidential election, I received an essay from a "friend" entitled "Black Tuesday." It was so hate-filled that it ruined my life for days. Thank-you for great reporting. Betsy Jones

    June 16, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  136. YNC

    What is it that we are not getting. If we are verbally forceful with Iran that little man will try and provoke action. We are in 2 count them 2 wars; our economy is crazy, once again crazy; what we need to do is strategically listen mobilize and be ready with limited resources; because that is all we got. Speak with our allies and be ready. Look American Seniors you talk to much, stay off CNN and really do something to unite the country so we can be ready for what every.

    June 16, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  137. lisa K

    I just tried to email Senator Diane Black – wanting to express my opinion that she should fire her administrative assistant Sheri Goforth , who sent the racist email tabout Our President to the "wrong" people. And, Lo and behold: hHer website is down. Wonder why? Maybe the "wrong" people have been sending HER emails. Shame on you Senator Black for not firing this woman immediately. The message you give is: What's the big deal? We're all racist here in Tennessee. Deal with it.

    June 16, 2009 at 6:06 pm |
  138. Sheila-Marie

    Why is it, that when Bush was in office, and people talked against him, we were "Unpatriotic", but these idiots can say whatever thay want about President Barack Obama, and apologize for it ? It still gets out in the media, so their thoughts are known...
    I wish someone would speak up for President Obama, and tell these racists butt munches to go straight to the 4th level of Hell...AKA the GOP.

    June 16, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  139. Sheila-Marie

    This world, and indeed these United States will never get over racism. It will follow us all until the day we die.
    For those who say "Get Over It" That's the problem: Whenever someone does something racist, we are told to Get Over It. I'm sick of getting over it. Something needs to be done to a government employee, who uses email to send racist notes, riddles, songs, pictures, etc. Fire them, and give someone who appreciates the job, that position.

    June 16, 2009 at 7:29 pm |
  140. David

    Its sad that are those out there that don't want a peaceful world....and Sarah...please just go and your bear rug.

    June 16, 2009 at 7:55 pm |
  141. slimclem

    Racism is systemic. It is in our institutions, media, arts and entertainment, legal system, finance, work place, humor etc. Racism is based on one group of people being superior to another. Stereotypes demonize the group of people who are not in power and justifies them being in that position, Clearly this photo plays out a racist attitude, Obama is reduced to darkness and big eyes, All the other presidents are shown as Presidential. President Obama is shown as a cartoon, a stereotypical image. There is absolutely nothing remotely funny about this and anyone who thinks it is funny or thinks that others should, reverse it with all the other Presidents looking likes spooks and then President Obamas real picture. Is that funny? I don't think so,

    June 17, 2009 at 12:03 am |
  142. Georgia

    I grew up in the 60's and saw first hand the struggle that black america endured. I am white! I rec'd this email this morning and promptly deleted it as I thought it was degrading. I did not vote for our current president but he is our president and deserves respect. and our prayers no matter what color we are. It's time to grow up we are not in the third grade anymore. He can make or break us I wouldn't want his job and just his tenacity and decency tells me he is a good man better than some white men I know. So grow up America and support "your" President.

    June 17, 2009 at 1:51 pm |
  143. Lawrence C Reed

    I spend some time watching and listing to the news, when you hear many of the comments from the G O P if one didn't know any better you would think that we have elected a new congress. those same G O P's who were there eight years with Mr. George Bush obviously didn't know nothing, now they know everything. You get fed up with people spending time and even years with their wives and lovers and get up one morning coming on national news aplogizeing the next day, you wender about the authenticity of these acts. thank you Mrs. Sandford for not standing there with him.

    July 4, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  144. Barbara Hilton

    Enough already, what Reed said is true. I am African American and know that what he said is what was and is thought of by many Whites and Blacks. Stop trying to make it into something it is not. He has apologized for something not seen as racists, only because you and others in the media want have something that seem negative toward the Democrats. Your time should be spent on exposing real racists remarks and actions instead of this nonsence.

    Tired of petty news.

    January 11, 2010 at 11:18 am |