Matt Lewis

Cain’s accusers: Does it matter if they’re black or white?

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Matt K. Lewis
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      Matt K. Lewis

      Matt K. Lewis is a senior contributor to The Daily Caller, and a contributing editor for The Week. He is a respected commentator on politics and cultural issues, and has been cited by major publications such as The Washington Post and The New York Times. Matt is from Myersville, MD and currently resides in Alexandria, VA. Follow Matt K. Lewis on Twitter <a>@mattklewis</a>.

Now that Herman Cain’s accusers appear to be free to talk — here’s a question to chew on: Does it matter if they’re black or white or… ?

I hope we can all agree that it shouldn’t matter.

But would it?

Throughout this process, some have sought to compare Cain’s ordeal to the ‘high-tech lynching’ endured by Clarence Thomas. Thomas, of course, was accused by a black woman, and this makes me wonder if the comparison has led people to subconsciously conclude that Cain’s accuser(s) were also black? (As far as I know, we don’t know the race of the anonymous accusers.)

Many observers, of course, have argued that if the accusers do finally go public — and if they then seem credible and sympathetic — it could be a game changer. Along those lines, one can also imagine that it is at least plausible that some primary voters might react differently if a white woman comes forward to accuse Cain, as opposed to a black woman.

I’d like to believe this won’t matter — that Cain and his accusers would be judged solely on the merits of their case.

This may well tell us a bit about how far we’ve come as a society…or not.