During my debate liveblog, I wrote:
9:12 Oliver, an african-american guy, has a question. I find it weird that "most of the people" he knows have had "a difficult time" in this economic crisis. Didn't the crisis start like two weeks ago?
9:13 McCain thinks you might not have heard of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Yep, he's going for the dumb guy vote. Either that or he's talking to Oliver. Probably not the time to be talking down to black people, Senator.
Turns out that Oliver Clark, the aforementioned Oliver, is a little pissed at McCain's response.
He wrote on his Facebook page:
How did I feel about Sen. McCain stating “You probably never heard of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac before this.”
Well Senator, I actually did. I like to think of myself as a fairly intelligent person. I have a bachelor degree in Political Science from Tennessee State, so I try to keep myself up to date with current affairs. I have a Master degree in Legal Studies from Southern Illinois University, a few years in law school, and I am currently pursuing a Master in Public Administration from the University of Memphis. In defense of the Senator from Arizona I would say he is an older guy, and may have made an underestimation of my age. Honest mistake. However, it could be because I am a young African-American male. Whatever the case may be it was somewhat condescending regardless of my age to make an assumption regarding whether I was knowledgeable about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
In all fairness, I am still not sure that McCain was specifically referring to Oliver. He might well have been saying that most Americans haven't heard of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, which still sounds snotty and wrong.
But he certainly answered in the sort of overly-sweet tone of voice that lots of people use when talking to, well, old people like McCain.
Hat tip to Wonkette