Thursday, August 24, 2006

Macaca, Part II

Virginia Senator George Allen has finally called S.R. Sidarth to apologize for calling him a macaca and welcoming him to "America and the real world of Virginia." Allen continues to insist he didn't know what the word meant.

Horseshit. Whether or not he knew the precise definition of "macaca" is besides the point. The fact remains that Allen singled out the one dark complexioned man in a crowd of 100 white people and directed an insulting comment at him. Even if by some stretch of the imagination we believe that he didn't intend it to be a racial barb, it's still nothing more than bullying. When the Senator did was no different than what schoolyard bullies do everyday when they call someone "four eyes" or some other such term. Hell, it's surprising Allen didn't climb down from his podium and steal Sidarth's lunch money.

But putting aside the racial aspect of what George did, I'm still profoundly insulted by the words "welcome to America and the real world of Virginia." What the f*ck was that supposed to mean!?!?! Sidarth was born and raised in Fairfax, Virginia. Does that mean that the million plus residents of Fairfax are some how not real Americans? Is Fairfax County somehow not part of Virginia?

To me, Allen's words are a further example of the divide between Northern Virginia and the rest of the state. The Northern Virginia counties/cities of Fairfax, Arlington, Falls Church and Alexandria are all within a half hour drive of the nation's capital. During the last several decades, those communities have grown, prospered, and become increasingly urbanized. Meanwhile, the state legislature in Richmond has continued to shortchange those areas when it comes to building roads and other infrastructure. Allen, a former Virginia governor, further exemplifies that divide.

A recent article in the Washington Post said that there are now over one million immigrants in the DC metropolitan are, of which Northern Virginia is a part. And four out of every ten of them has a college degree, compared with the national average of less than three in ten. Fairfax County in particular, where Siddarth grew up, has almost 1.1 million residents now, and 27% of them are from other countries. Is that somehow unacceptable to George Allen? Should Fairfax secede from the rest of Virginia because it's not really part of the state?

This raises an interesting question: Just what is George Allen's version of the "real Virginia?" A bunch of ignorant inbred hillbillies chugging bottles of moonshine while they have sex with their cousins?

0 thoughtful ramblings: