Panel: Criticism of Obama Selfie is Racist and Sexist

"A confluence of racist and sexist stereotypes as if Michelle is an angry black woman, as if President Obama is an oversexed black man."

On Wednesday's Thomas Roberts program on MSNBC, the host and his panel discussed the coverage of President Obama's "selfie" with the British and Danish Prime-Ministers, and the speculation that the First Lady was glaring at the merry trio, calling it racist and sexist.

The segment began with Roberts showing the front covers of the New York tabloids, the conservative New York Post and the liberal New York Daily News. Thomas however blamed the negative reaction on conservatives. 

Irin Carmon reporter for MSNBC, blasted the coverage:

This is a big tempest in a teapot and a confluence of racist and sexist stereotypes, as if Michelle is an angry black woman, as if President Obama is an oversexed black man -- and, by the way, as if the Danish Prime Minister is an object of flirtation as opposed to a world leader in her own rite.

Roberts asked guest, Professor James Peterson of Lehigh Valley University if the charges of racism were taking things too far. Peterson answered:

It's not taking it too far once you situate it within the context within which the right-wing has attacked the First Lady since even before she was the First Lady. I mean Irin is right here that they’ve tried to couch her in this stereotypical racist and sexist narrative of the angry black woman. 

Perhaps the fairest reaction to the "selfie" comes from Roberto Schmidt, the AFP News Service photographer who took the picture of the "selfie" pose, he said:

I confess, too, that it makes me a little sad we are so obsessed with day-to-day trivialities, instead of things of true importance.

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