Sunday morning when I reported that an American had won the NYC Marathon for the first time in 27 years, I purposely didn’t mention that he is a naturalized citizen – an immigrant from Eritrea – because, you know, so fucking what? American is American, right? Well, not according to CNBC’s Darren Rovell. Via AmericaBlog, Rovell’s commentary:
It’s a stunning headline: American Wins Men’s NYC Marathon For First Time Since ’82. Unfortunately, it’s not as good as it sounds. Meb Keflezighi, who won yesterday in New York, is technically American by virtue of him becoming a citizen in 1998, but the fact that he’s not American-born takes away from the magnitude of the achievement the headline implies…
Given our disappointing results, embracing Keflezighi is understandable. But Keflezighi’s country of origin is Eritrea, a small country in Africa. He is an American citizen thanks to taking a test and living in our country. Nothing against Keflezighi, but he’s like a ringer who you hire to work a couple hours at your office so that you can win the executive softball league. The positive sign was that some American-born runners did extremely well in yesterday’s men’s race. If any of them stand on the top step of the podium in Central Park one day, that’s when I’ll break out my red, white and blue.
John Aravosis nails it:
I can’t even believe that CNBC would publish this kind of racist crap. This “reporter” should be fired, as should whatever editor saw this story and let it be printed. Technically an American? Simply passed a test? And what did you do, Darren, to become an American? You were born here to American parents – that must have been real hard work fighting your way through your mother’s birth canal. I’m sure childbirth taught you a lot more about liberty and freedom than a guy who escaped a civil war to come to a land where he could be free.