LA Progressive writer Charley James stirred the pot with his incendiary and anonymous-source-heavy piece earlier this month contending that Sarah Palin is racist. Now, James continues his investigation by sharing a reminiscence from a known quantity — one who can be seen regularly on cable TV — who is fine with identifying himself.
Long before Gregory Charles Royal became a judge on America’s Hot Musician, a talent competition airing in 200 US television markets, he was a hot, young jazz trombonist. Today, he is someone confirming from first-hand experience that Palin has always been racist as alleged by numerous sources in my original article on her, “Alaskans Speak: Palin Is “Racist, Sexist, Vindictive and Mean.”
Royal recalls meeting a young Sarah Heath 18 years ago, when he was performing with the Duke Ellington Orchestra in Anchorage. At the time, she was married and newly pregnant, but Royal says she mentioned neither fact.
“I saw a great looking young lady and, as lots of travelling musicians do, I struck up a conversation with her,” Royal recounted to me after my original piece on Palin was published. “She told me her name was Sarah.”
Royal admits he was hitting on her and, he claims, she knew it. Picking up women is a regular activity for most musicians, especially when on the road. The reason this particular conversation stuck in his mind is because she said that while she wasn’t much into jazz, she played the flute.
“This is why I remembered talking with her,” Royal states.
He told Sarah about talking about the Modern Jazz Quartet as an example of not strictly jazz style music but could still be cool. “I was trying to keep the conversation going,” Royal says, “so I mentioned some of the musicians, including Percy Heath.”
“She quickly let me know that Heath was her name too,” Royal recounts.
… Royal felt he was making progress with Sarah Heath and when a couple of his musician friends approached, he waved them off. “But she saw them and got weird.”
“Sarah asked me if they were with me. I asked her what was up because she was obviously a little weird after seeing them,” states Royal, who has Native American blood in his ancestry [and is] fairly light skinned while his buddies were much darker.
“I don’t mean any harm,” Royal says Sarah told him, which is exactly what she meant but he recalls her saying that she doesn’t do black guys.
“I said ‘I’m Black,'” Royal relates, to which Sarah replied with, “Well, you aren’t really black. You’re like …”
Royal remembers her voice trailed off as if not knowing what to say next as the reality of the situation sunk in on her. “Then she got real confused and the conversation ended rather quickly and uncomfortably.”
Read it and make up your own mind as to whether you’re comfortable having someone like that in the White House: