Shhhh, he's an Arab

October 13, 2008 by susan
Old photo, Lawrence of Arabia

There are times when you cringe to be a Minnesotan. One is when you hear Sarah Palin speak in her more Minnesohdan than Minnesohda accent. Turns out she's descended from a herd of folks who thought it was gettin' kinda too warm and too bug-free here in Minnesota, so they headed Way up North to Alaska. That was several generations ago, but like the Apalachians who still speak in an Elizabethan dialect brought with them from England, this renegade group clung to droppin' their g's and their nasal A's. She's gonna shatter that glass ceiling all right, with her Minnesota voice.
More, as always.

Another is when your state elects a pro wrestler to be your governor and still another when that governor says in one of his first interviews that he hopes to come back in his next life as a "Double D bra."

And then there's the ignominy of the Republican convention in St. Paul and the Darth Vader police force that was just a tad over dressed and over stressed.

And finally (or just most recently, alas, as there will be more) was the McCain rally in Lakeville where the audience sounded like a bunch of paranoid whiners. (Phil Graham knows his peeps.) Grown men stood up saying they were afraid of Barack Obama, others urged Little John to hit him harder. Whimper whimper. "He's clobberin' us Dad, go beat him up."

And then, the shot seen around the world -- the orange-shirted woman with early stages of Phyllis Diller hair -- and late stages of Fox TV-induced brain rot, saying she could never vote for Obama because "he's an . . . . Arab."

I suppose it's a huge improvement over yelling "kill him" but did it have to happen in Minnesota? Fer chrissakes we're the people of farmers and labor and Hubert Humphrey and Orville Freeman (whose 90+ year old widow endorsed Obama early on) and Eugene McCarthy and Walter Mondale and Paul Wellstone and a whole slew of other good folks on down the line. So where did orange-shirt get this odiferous piece of misinformation and unabashed bigotry? Well, I already mentioned Fox news, which pretty much covers it. That and the fact that like nearly every other state, we have a large population of chowder-heads.

As we know, John McCain said "No, m'am, he's not. He's a decent family man who I just happen to disagree with." Something like that. This eensy moment of disingenuous rectitude is like blowing out the candle after you've lit the house on fire.

But it's also only half of a response because what the heck is wrong with being an Arab? Arabs aren't decent family men? Okay, some sects of Islam aren't too women-friendly, putting it mildly, but A.) not all Arabs are Muslims, and B.) not all Muslims are Arabs, and C.) most Muslims are moderates who do subversive and indecent things like hold jobs, support their children and abstain from alcohol.

And substitute almost any other religious or ethnic group for Arab, and see if the same answer would apply. Catholic? Jewish? Evangelical? Hispanic? "No, no, he's not a Jew, he's a decent family man . . . "

John McCain should have said, "You, madam, are a misinformed old chowder-head. He's not an Arab, nor a Muslim, and even if he were, what of it? He's proven over the last two years that he's a smart, articulate, well-informed, even-tempered man, a loving father and husband, with a brilliant and poised wife whom he adores -- in short, my friends, a man who is much more fit to lead this country than I am."

Something like that. And he could have thrown in an apology for his appalling choice of a running mate. And then withdrawn from the race saying, "My friends, let's elect Barack Obama the next president of the USA by acclamation and save us all a lot of money and a lot of nasty ads."

Now that's an October surprise worth dreaming about.

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TropiGal (not verified) | October 14, 2008 - 2:25pm

Splendid post. So well-written. It rolls like butter off steamed corn with sarcasm. Love it. Love.

So sorry about your friend Barb and her dh. Prayers and hugs. E


Max (not verified) | October 14, 2008 - 7:00pm

Long time listener, first time caller. Love this piece. Oh, what a dream you have offered me. Well done. m


susan | October 17, 2008 - 6:20pm

Thanks Max and Tropigal. Still waiting for the twins to pop so not keeping up on the clothesline. More to come soon.