September 17th, 2009
08:40 AM ET
5 years ago

Carter again cites racism as factor in Obama's treatment

ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) - Former President Jimmy Carter reiterated Wednesday that he believes racism is an issue for President Obama in trying to lead the country.

"When a radical fringe element of demonstrators and others begin to attack the president of the United States as an animal or as a reincarnation of Adolf Hitler or when they wave signs in the air that said we should have buried Obama with Kennedy, those kinds of things are beyond the bounds," the Democrat who served from 1977-1981 told students at Emory University.

"I think people who are guilty of that kind of personal attack against Obama have been influenced to a major degree by a belief that he should not be president because he happens to be African American.

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soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. Ken in NC

    While President Carter has not gone down in history and one of our greatest Presidents, I respect and admire him for his straight talk and honesty. This man has done as many of us. He has lived in the south and seen first hand the nasty faces of racism and if he chooses to speak to that issue, it is his right.

    September 17, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  2. Sam Sixpack

    To assume people of one race who disagree with you are racists IS racist. I have felt sorry for Carter ever since his helicopters went down in the desert – and I still feel sorry for him.

    September 17, 2009 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  3. Peoples Voice

    Mr Carter is right. The racists in this country are having a field day.

    September 17, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  4. Robin

    I am sick of being called a racist because I'm against Obama's health care plan.

    I'm not against Obama, I'm against some of his policies. Operative word here, some. Which means I like some of his policies too.

    September 17, 2009 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  5. Debby

    Oh just shut up Carter you were the worse President and now even the worse civil rights speaker.

    September 17, 2009 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  6. Adalbert

    Mr. Carter is correct. These so called "tea-baggers" have no class. We must consider the source, many of them were just released from mental institutions.

    September 17, 2009 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  7. vic nashville , Tn

    I didn’t believe racism behind of these tea party and town hall meeting till last Monday

    After watching AC 360 Monday and Tuesday night I changed my mind

    Mark was calling names on our president in National TV !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    David Gergen is very independent analyst and very cool guy even he doesn’t want to listen what Mark was saying

    Anderson you are my Hero

    Thanks to CNN you the only one telling the truth

    September 17, 2009 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  8. Mic

    Hello Mr. Carter my wife and I protest at tea parties all the time against Obama's policies. My wife is a AFRO AMERICAN so sir. Do you think my wife and I are racist? Sir we have things against socialism that's all. So sir stop calling us racist.

    September 17, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  9. Kevin in Ohio

    This man is unbelievable. Here he goes again. Tell me, Mr.Carter, why it is racist for me to disagree with this President when it was NOT considered racist to disagree with Colin Powell, Condy Rice, or, even, now, GOP Chairman Steele? And tell me why you essentially gave Kanye West a pass for what many Americans considered an extremely racist act?

    September 17, 2009 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  10. Nancy - Houston

    Because of the awful signs, etc. I believe Pres. Carter is right. Some who were raised as I was haven't matured enough to think about this subject for themselves. Regardless of race, I admire anyone who has pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and made a good and honorable life for themselves and others. I appreciate Pres. Obama for his "smarts" and his classy behavior. I like it that we have a president who can articulate what he believes and why he believes it. And all those white folks who resent his color, don't forget, we can brag his is one-half our color, and you black folks, don't you ever forget that! :)

    September 17, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  11. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Leave it alone. Racism is the beast that keeps feeding itself. Mr. Carter's comments were correct, but let's get off of race.

    September 17, 2009 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  12. Don't blame me-I voted for the american

    How does he reconcile the Right's dislike for Obama with their love of Colin Powell?

    For that matter, to what does he attribute the riight's dislike of him and his presidency?

    Could it be the issues, his positions, and job performance? Nah, must be racism. Yep, only possible explanation. Ineptitude and support for the indolent couldn't possibly have factored in.

    September 17, 2009 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  13. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    For those that have their heads buried int he sand as to the subtle and not-so-subtle display of racism towards our President, can they explain to me the significance of the White House postcard sent to the President with the front lawn covered with WATERMELONS???

    September 17, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  14. NC

    Former President Carter is correct. Last fall during the campaign McCain-Palin supproters had stuffed monkeys with an Obama sticker.
    Some of the signs at the protests are digusting and trying to make our President as less than human. I am a southerner 60 years old and know racism when I see it. This is the same group with their children and grandchildren that we saw in the 60's during the Civil Rights movement beating women and children, turning on the fire hoses and dogs on black people. I have not seen this much anger and hate in our country since the 60's. It is widespread and I want my country back from these haters. I want them to crawl back under their rock. They are in the minority in our country Thank God.

    September 17, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  15. victim of republican greed

    For an 80 year old who grew up in the rural south, I agree with President Carter, but I feel it is time to move on from this talk. Those who exhibit racist tendencies take great offense at being called racist. It is a waste of time to convince a member of the sons of confederacy that all people are created equal.

    September 17, 2009 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  16. Bubble of Sanity

    It is rather shallow of someone to lump all the political dialogue that has been going on into one issue. The vast majority of people in this country have no problem with the color of our President's skin. The fools who voted against him simply because he is of African heritage are no worse than the fools who voted for him solely because of that heritage.

    For a former president to make the statement that everyone who opposes the President are guilty of racism shows that former President Carter has never gotten beyond the ineptness and inability to analyze a situation that doomed him to being a one-term president.

    September 17, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  17. Enough

    Carter LOVES Obama, he sees it as his second term, the one that he never got. After all they are in close competition for the worst president ever!

    Time for Obama to call Carter and put an end to these ridiculous claims once and for all.

    September 17, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  18. debra

    Carter, you are senile, spineless old fool. The preseident is white AND black. This is about his inability to give concrete answers.

    September 17, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  19. Don't blame me-I voted for the american

    "When a radical fringe element of demonstrators and others begin to attack the president of the United States as an animal or as a reincarnation of Adolf Hitler . . . . those kinds of things are beyond the bounds."

    Funny, I seem to recall the left doing exactly that with Reagan, Bush I, Bush II, other republicans . . . .

    Hypocrisy, thy name is Liberal.

    September 17, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
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