Sunday, October 2, 2011

Rick Perry's "Niggerhead" Headache

October 2, 2011 - Associated Press reports today that two Republican contenders for the GOP presidential nomination are having a spat over the racist name of a hunting camp in Texas. Herman Cain is criticizing Texas Governor Rick Perry for a the name of the park, and many of politically correct mainstream media (but not all) are reluctant to even print the full name. Chicago News Bench is neither mainstream nor politically correct, so we'll tell you that the name of the campgrounds in question is "Niggerhead." Where is "Niggerhead?" The camp grounds are near Paint Creek, Texas, Perry's childhood hometown. Also known as "North Camp Pasture," the land is owned by the Hendricks Home for Children, a non-profit charity group in Abilene, TX. according to the Miami Herald. However, the media got it wrong: It's not "Hendricks..." but "Hendrick Home for Children." Abilene is about 10 miles from Paint Creek, TX (map).
I can't say I blame Herman Cain for being upset about this. It's not as though Perry was never aware of the offensive name: The Washington Post reported this morning that Perry’s family leased the Texas land in 1983, at which time it already had the name "Niggerhead" painted on a boulder next to one of the campground's entrances.
Perry says he painted over the offensive word way back then. So, is Herman Cain unfairly rushing to judgment about this? By his own admission, Cain does not know when "Niggerhead" was painted over, as you'll hear in this video. What the left-leaning Washington Post conveniently left out of their story today is the fact that the campgrounds was renamed "North Camp Pasture" about five years ago. The Telegraph UK reports this: "When the Texas Governor's family began using the ranch in his home state there was already a sign bearing the offensive word at the entrance.... The Washington Post spoke to seven people who remembered seeing the sign standing at the gate at various times in the 1980s and 1990s. One former ranch worker told the newspaper it was still there in 2008." The Telegraph goes on to report that "Mr Perry denied that was the case, issuing a detailed response in which he said the sign was painted over as soon as he he began using the ranch." So, there are conflicting stories. Perry says that the rock with "Niggerhead" on it was painted over way back in 1983. But there are, according to the Washington Post, several people who claim to remember seeing "Niggerhead" on that rock years after Perry says he painted it over. Perry says that they renamed the area "North Camp Pasture," but it's not clear when that renaming happened. In fact, even Herman Cain is not sure when the rock was painted over. The Miami Herald quotes Cain as saying, “Yes, it was painted over, but how long ago was it painted over? So I'm still saying that it is a sign of insensitivity.” Well hold on a minute. If Gov. Perry really did allow "Niggerhead" to continue to be emblazoned for years across that big rock by the entrance to his favorite hunting ground, then he deserves harsh criticism. However, if it was already painted on the rock when he started using the grounds, and if he quickly painted it over as he claims, then Herman Cain deserves a harsh slap for being overly eager to play the race card. At this time, the facts are unclear. One thing is for certain, no matter what the truth is: Herman Cain just ratcheted up the Perry Pile On activity by several notches.
Note: There are a number of places around the world with "Niggerhead" or "Nigger Head" as part of their name. See "A World Full of Places Called Niggerhead."