TheRoot.com, which is owned by The Washington Post, recently ran a flattering portrait of a communist running for president on a pro-Soviet and anti-Israel platform. “Meet the Black woman running for president on a platform of socialist revolution,” the publication proclaimed. Peta Lindsay was described as a “bubbly African-American activist” who has been preaching “economic change through the socialist transformation of society.”
Lindsay is the 2012 presidential candidate of the Party for Socialism and Liberation (PSL), whose website includes slogans such as “Defend revolutionary Cuba!” and “Free Palestine!” In 2008, the party ran Gloria La Riva for president and “pulled 6,818 votes across the nation,” the article says.
Lindsay is 27 years of age and doesn’t meet the constitutional age requirement to hold the office—a “technicality to which she pays little mind,” the article reveals.
Why is the Post promoting this fringe candidate who literally can’t even win?
Perhaps it’s because Lindsay serves the purpose of making Obama look like a moderate. Lindsay laughs at the notion that Obama is a socialist, the article says.
The Root article is by Cynthia Gordy, the former Washington Correspondent for Essence magazine, who reports that Lindsay’s “belief in socialism” was buttressed by a 2002 trip to Cuba, “where she marveled at the free education, housing and health care.” Nothing was said about the bankruptcy of the regime, its desperate need for trade and aid from the West, lack of basic human rights, harboring of American terrorists, and support for international terrorism.
Lindsay is a founding member of the PSL and a member of its Central Committee. The group is so extreme that it defends the old Soviet Union and participates in conferences of the International Communist Seminar, a gathering of political parties and organizations which defend Marxism-Leninism. It supports the Cuban dictatorship and the Marxist Hugo Chavez regime in Venezuela, calls Israel “a military garrison state serving the U.S. Empire in the Middle East,” and opposes “U.S. attempts to bring about ‘regime change’ in Lebanon, Syria and Iran…”
But the Post thinks she is deserving of special attention.
Identified as The Washington Post Company’s African American news and commentary site, The Root was founded in 2008 “under the leadership” of Prof. Henry Louis Gates Jr. of Harvard University, a close personal friend of President Obama. Remember that it was Obama who went to Gates’ defense when he resisted arrest in an incident outside his home in 2009. Obama said the white policeman who arrested Gates, who is black, acted “stupidly.” The policeman’s fellow officers said the arrest, made in response to disorderly conduct, was justified.
Technically, the Root is published by The Slate Group, an online publishing unit of the Post that also includes Slate magazine. The unit reports directly to Washington Post chairman and CEO Donald Graham.
The “Blogs We Like” section at the bottom of the homepage of TheRoot.com includes Media Matters for America, the Soros-funded group that tries to censor conservative views; the Huffington Post; and “Pam’s House Blend,” a blog devoted to smearing opponents of homosexuality as bigots.
The influence of Media Matters can be seen in the Root article, “MSNBC Finally Ousts Pat Buchanan,” on the campaign to get rid of conservative commentator Patrick J. Buchanan. The article, “Grassroots Organizing Took Down Pat Buchanan,” noted the role of Media Matters and Color of Change in forcing Buchanan’s firing. The article said that Buchanan was “out of sync” with a network that has “offered groundbreaking shows to white and black liberal hosts like Rachel Maddow, Chris Hayes, and Melissa Harris-Perry.”
The article on Peta Lindsay isn’t the first time that The Root has publicized communist viewpoints. As we noted in another column, the on-line publication highlighted the involvement of Communist Party USA official Jarvis Tyner in the October 2, 2010, “One Nation Working Together” rally in Washington, D.C. Cord Jefferson, a staff writer for The Root, quoted Tyner as saying, “This is the real deal here. We don’t agree with Obama on everything, but the future of our country is associated with moving the country away from the last 30 years, and he’s part of that. He said the people ought to get involved and make the change that they want, and I think that’s a good thing for the country.”
Lindsay, however, viewed Obama as “beholden to the same corporate and financial interests as any other candidate,” the publication reported.
It turns out that The Washington Post has found Lindsay attractive in the past. A March 2003 Post column by Courtland Milloy, “Student Leader Sees Through Bush Propaganda,” said, “Peta Lindsay is one of those people who gives me hope that all is not lost in America.”
At the time, Lindsay was a freshman at Howard University and national student coordinator for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), a communist front. She specialized in African-American studies at Howard University and graduated in 2008. Her current bio says she is pursuing a master’s degree in education from the University of Southern California “with the goal of becoming a public school teacher.”
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.