Fighting Racism With Racism
The good news: Tan Nguyen supporters held a rally at Tan's office yesterday, providing still more ridiculousness to keep our spirits up as we draw closer to the Election Day of Reckoning. Tan supporters are certainly a colorful bunch. Over on the Free Republic website they've posted quite a few pictures, along with the following claims:
- Loretta Sanchez's office provided the faulty translation of the Sergio Ramirez letter
- Loretta's office was notified about the raid on Tan's office, hence the major media presence
Right. Congresswoman Sanchez's office mistranslated a letter to 14,000 Spanish-speaking immigrant voters, illegally telling them it would be illegal for them to vote. Why would she disenfranchise her supporters? Because the inevitable backlash would benefit her? That's about as insane as the idea that Loretta's office would lend Tan a hand, or that there are so few bilingual folk around OC that Tan would need to beg a favor from Loretta.
As for Loretta's office having prior notice: that's true. In fact, most politicians and local media outlets had prior notice to show up, provided by none other than Tan Nguyen. Remember, Tan? You promised us a press conference on the afternoon of Oct. 20 outside your campaign headquarters to explain the letter. So yes, Loretta and the media were warned - by YOU.
None of this is surprising; Tan's an accidental satirist of epic proportions. But what did shock me was the vitriol and bigotry evidenced in the local blogosphere's response to these pictures. Over on OCBlog the commenters referred to Tan's supporters as hookers, Nazis and massage parlor workers. Even the site moderator, Jubal/Matt Cunningham, who likes to take people to task for name-calling, said "Maybe they should re-name it Freek Republic." Wow, we haven't seen this kind of bigotry on OCBlog since they went after Bill (Belal) Dalati.
Even Orange Juice joined in on the racist ranting. OJ's a slightly more bipartisan blog if you bar Art Pedroza's occasional spittle-flecked rantings. On the Juice, Claudio Gallegos lapsed into OCBlogspeak by referring to Tan supporters as "hookers, racists and brainwashed nutcases." Okay, so there was one woman who was dressed a little slutty. I lent a friend a top-hat for a Halloween party that same Saturday night; she may have been similarly party-bound. Hell, either way, more power to her. I wish more girls dressed like that, all the time, every day of the year. Please?
I don't know if people are getting antsy so close to the election and feel like beating up on the most obvious targets in order to feel better about themselves or what, but I suspect that resorting to insults is exactly the sort of behavior that allows us to justify torturing prisoners. After all, they ought to know better than to hate America, right? So who cares if we violate our principles and sink down to what we perceive as their level? It's all a farce.
At the end of the day we should at least pretend to treat our enemies, or those with whose politics we disagree, with respect or at least tolerance. I know that's all that's kept me from going on a blood-soaked rampage during this election cycle. How do you all restrain yourselves?
UPDATE: NOBODY READS THE PAPERS ANYMORE
Just spotted this in the Sunday Register:
Buena Park's the Rev. Wiley Drake showed up to videotape his global prayer-line broadcast, and a club singer in black fishnet stockings repeatedly lip-synced to her recording of the campaign's new country-Western theme song, "Stand by Our Tan."
An explanation for the so-called "hooker", and an appropriate song, considering the original lyrics:
You'll have bad times
And he'll have good times
Doing things that you don't understand
But if you love him, you'll forgive him
Even though he's hard to understand