AP reporter says he meant no disrespect when dropping G’s from Obama’s speech

Yahoo | Mediaite
AP reporter Mark Smith has been criticized for the way he transcribed  President Barack Obama’s use of dialect during a speech to black voters last weekend. When quoting part of Obama’s speech, Smith noted the dropped G’s: “Shake it off. Stop complainin’. Stop grumblin’. Stop cryin’.” African-American author Karen Hunter told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes that the AP’s version of the speech was “inherently racist.” Smith said he normally goes by the AP Stylebook — which advises against using dialect — but made an exception. “In this case, the President appeared to be making such a point of dropping Gs, and doing so in a rhythmic fashion, that for me to insert them would run clearly counter to his meaning,” Smith told Mediate. “I believe I was respecting his intent in this. Certainly disrespect was the last thing I intended.”

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  • Anonymous

    This is what’s wrong with America. This shouldn’t be a discussion nor an issue to begin with. Who cares if the AP drooped a ‘G’. The concept of Race needs to be wiped out completely. institutionally, socially, and geo-politically. 

    Neighborhoods are still segregated. Sunday is the most divided day on the week, when everyone goes to their respective congregations. We need to end all that. 

    It’s the NATIONAL BLACK CAUCUS. so Race is inherent. We need to end that too. There needs to be an AMERICANS WITH BRAINS CAUCUS.

    Perhaps if all this occurrs, then the AP wouldnt’t feel the need to drop the G. If they don’t do it for George W, and Sarah Palin, then I can see why one can argure that they should not do it to Obama. George W, just can;t speak english perioid, so there’s a reason why they need to clean his verbal nonsnece up. 

    Sarah Palin talks to that folksy folk talk, that gets cleaned up too. So AP could be more consistant there.

    Overall I think the AP just wanted to communicate the Obaba was talking to a Black audience. Whether that is right or worng, it really shouldn’t matter. They can write how they wish. Buy it’s sad that we have not moved on from this race bullshit.

    P.S. Biologically, there is no such think as race. we are all the same species of Homo Sapiens. We just have very diverse physical traits, in our Gene pools, which make up Genetically superior to other life forms on this planet. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_GAAH7VRO37HO7C6EIMX4TVIKWY Jon

    if you want to clean up the grammar of some local yokel, fine. you don’t need to embarrass ordinary “folk” (as our president might say in front of a black audience.)

    However, you shouldn’t clean up the President’s language, especially when it is clear that he is adopting an affectation for political purposes. 

    if a white person spoke to the same audience in the same fashion, he or she would be condemned as racist for demeaning the audience amazingly, people are now calling the reporter racist for ACCURATELY transcribin’ the president’s speechifyin.

    and i don’t remember anyone getting upset when reporters (accurately) conveyed W’s bad language. 

  • R Thomas Berner

    Hell, I drop my the g a lot and I’m a 67 year old white man. Look, I just dropped my hyphens. Smith is wrong.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=5300451 Ryan Holeywell

    I think it’s very obvious that the president said exactly what was written (in’ as opposed to -ing). But here’s a question: is a quote A) What the speaker actually said B) What the speaker intended to say C) What the author heard D) What the author believes the speaker intended to say. Most journalists would answer A, and I’d agree. However, it’s not so easy. In many circumstances, ABC&D will be different. In this case, however, I think all four are the same, and the writer did the right thing.

  • Anonymous

    AP should stick to the AP Stylebook. Dialect can be a hot potato, heard and felt differently.