Apparently it’s open season on the Polish. Last week, as Marion Barry was “apologizing” for his recent remarks on Asian business owners (“We got to do something about these Asians coming in and opening up businesses and dirty shops”), these words accidentally came out of his mouth:
Barry apologized for adding racial tensions in the nation’s capital, noting that there’s nothing new about race-based divides in America.
“The Irish caught hell, the Jews caught hell, the Polacks caught hell,” Barry said, according to WTOP radio.
It turned out “the Polacks” didn’t like that for some odd reason, so Barry then had to apologize for his apology.
Not to be outdone, Barry “Barack” Obama has decided to get in on that action. Can you turn a slur against the Polish into an international incident, Marion? Didn’t think so.
Poles and Polish-Americans expressed outrage today at President Obama’s reference earlier to “a Polish death camp” — as opposed to a Nazi death camp in German-occupied Poland.
“The White House will apologize for this outrageous error,” Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski tweeted. Sikorski said that Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk “will make a statement in the morning. It’s a pity that this important ceremony was upstaged by ignorance and incompetence.”
The president had been trying to honor a famous Pole, awarding a Presidential Medal of Freedom to Jan Karski, a resistance fighter who sneaked behind enemy lines to bear witness to the atrocities being committed against Jews. President Obama referred to him being smuggled “into the Warsaw ghetto and a Polish death camp to see for himself.”
Why do some people get so uptight about being mistaken for the Nazis, just because they happened to get invaded by the Nazis? Sheesh. Well, the important thing is that this isn’t Obama’s fault, for whatever reason the White House is magnanimous enough to give us — it’s not that he doesn’t know history, of course, because he knows everything — and now everybody will shut up about it or else it’s not fair.
Come on, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusks, it’s not like that dummy George W. Bush said it…