I’m no paid political pundit, but it seems to a amateur like myself that dropping an n-bomb in front of African-American colleagues to criticize white party leadership delimits a politician’s career trajectory. While it appears the current political climate is more amenable to displays of racial animus than had been the case in recent memory, the unguarded usage of that epithet is still a cause for controversy.
[Florida state Senator Frank Artiles] called Senate President Joe Negron, a Republican, a vulgar word for female genitalia and said he had won his position because “six n‑‑‑ers” had elected him, according to the Herald.
When Gibson and Thurston recoiled at the comment, Artiles tried to defend himself by saying he meant to use a different version of the n-word, ending with “as” rather than “ers,” according to Politico.
Failing to employ coded language and dog whistles like the more sophisticated (and not coincidentally, more politically successful) breed of racist lawmaker, Artiles turned to the “‘as’ not ‘ers'” defense. The “‘as’ not ‘ers'” didn’t work during the height of gangsta rap in the 1990s, and time has only rendered it more feeble.
If Artiles’ career survives this, he had best stick to the gendered insults going forward. Misogyny gets a pass, as long as he doesn’t personally attack the wives or daughters of anyone important.
(Year Zero/Day Ninety)
It could happen to any of us.
You’re minding your own business, trying to fit in at your new job as a counter-terrorism adviser to the president, when the liberal media slanders your good name by calling you an Islamophobe. You’ve got it all wrong, you say. I’m not afraid of Muslims, I just think letting them come to America is national suicide and the Koran has made them all violent maniacs. No one listens to your reasonable explanation. You feel terribly misunderstood.
When you think it’s all boiled over, some jackanape viciously attacks you for wearing a medal associated with Hungarian Nazi collaborator Admiral Miklós Horthy. You plead for people to see reason – you’re just honoring the valiant anti-communist efforts of your former countrymen. Fake News has their fingers in their ears. “Nazi!” they scream. “Fascist pig!” Your feelings are hurt, but you stand your ground and the jackals wander off to find something else to feast on.
A month goes by. You’re convinced the unpleasantness is behind you now. You’ve made lots of friends at the office, and the higher ups really liked your presentation about bombing Islam off the face of the earth. Life is good… until some Hebrew publication finds out you backed the violently antisemitic Magyar Gárda Mozgalom militia way back when you were a Jobbik politician in Hungaria. That was forever ago! They were drinking buddies! I don’t *hate* Jews, I just… is it getting hot in here? I need to go to the restroom. Don’t wait up for me.
It’s a very stressful situation! You worry your past has come back to haunt you in a major way… and then the worry melts away. What’s the big deal? You’re not going to lose your job. Unlike the hard times you went through in the old country, you can do pretty much anything you want here and your boss will stand behind you.
You give a relieved chuckle, start up your laptop and log into Stormfront.
(Year Zero/Day Seventy-Five)