Having come down from the elation of watching George Allen concede Virginia’s Senate race to Jim Webb, I am struck by the realization of how close the Commonwealth came to re-electing him and placing its imprimatur on an unapologetic racist and homophobe. The stark reality of Allen’s strong vote totals make Doug Wilder’s election as the first Black elected Governor seem like divine intervention.
Were the revelations surrounding his gratuitous use of racial slurs not clear for the 1.1 million people that voted for him? I am trying to wrap my mind around the ideology that allows a person to vote for an unapologetic racist and homophobe in good conscience. Do they feel protected in the anonymity of the voting booth in exercising their racial animus? Do they give in to these urges to support racism on a regular, daily basis?
Are they rationalizing these allegations away or do they just not care? More disturbingly, are they comforted and confirmed in their own prejudice by voting for him? These nagging questions floating around my head have a way of sapping my strength and stealing the joy of his defeat away from me.
Given the questions swirling around in my spirit about him, I cannot fathom why any sentient, sane African American would endorse him for any reason and provide him political cover, especially after several white professionals and collegues came forward to confirm his prejudice by recounting his unchecked use of the most virulent, anti-black, racial epithet in the lexicon.
What kind of twilight zone are they living in. It’s as if these Negroes have ignored the entire sorrid racial history of this nation and believe that it doesn’t matter. It has always mattered and always will. It mattered to Michael Satcher and Ronald Bennett, two African American men George Allen allowed to be executed by the Commonwealth after exculpatory evidence of innocence was brought to his attention and ignored for reasons of political expediency and probable racial animus.
Finally, despite everything, how can anyone profess to like a racist? Chris Matthews said that crap today before Allen’s concession speecch. Can somebody help me understand that? Was this “like” a factor in people’s vote to support a racist? Do they think, “Yeah, I know he is a Klansman, but he is really personable, I think I’ll vote for him.” Somebody please explain that thought process to me so I can sleep at night.