Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Pam Spaulding, I Frankly Wasn't Disappointed

Some people got drunk and spoke their minds in front of a digital camcorder, and of course now it's up on YouTube and Pam Spaulding has mentioned it on Pandagon. The twist is, this was recorded somewhere in southeastern Kentucky, and so Pam clucks her tongue at the Bluegrass State in general and cites this video as a prime example of "why Appalachia may never be fertile ground for Barack Obama voter base growth."

I respect Pam's work on LGBT issues, and her work on black issues, and her work on Taser abuse, and I certainly respect her ability to wade into the fever swamps and pull out idiocy for us to mock on Pandagon. I certainly can't understand what it's like to have a marriage that my state won't recognize. But I do resent it when Pam holds the whole of Kentucky responsible for the drunken comments of one of its citizens.

This isn't the first time she's done it, either. Earlier this year, when Barack Obama failed to convince the majority of Kentucky Democrats to vote for him, Pam summarized the outcome of the primary in a post titled, "Clinton wins Kentucky, race chasm proven again." Now, I'm not expert enough to discuss the merits of the "race chasm" theory, but the associations in the title would suggest that Pam doesn't have a good opinion of Kentucky. This was borne out in the body of the post, when Pam describes Kentucky Dems as "working-class, less educated whites" who are "unwilling" to vote for Obama.

Now, as then, Pam refers to these drunken residents of Kentucky as "working-class, ignorant voters."

She follows up her post about the YouTube video with a much longer post of recent race troubles in her home state of North Carolina, which is curious since she chose to open the piece by clucking her tongue at Kentucky in the manner of a disappointed nanny. Since she led with "Kentucky couple get plastered and say something dumb," and makes no mention of North Carolina in the title, despite having roughly four times as many column-inches full of North Carolina jerks, she obviously believes that Kentucky racists outweigh those of North Carolina.

But we're* not the only state in the nation with race problems. A Florida teacher recently busted out the n-word. Mell Kuhn, mayor of Arkansas City, Kansas, won a trophy for his profoundly racist turn in blackface and drag. Virginia recently dumped George "Macaca" Allen, but it hasn't hurt his career any.

But apparently those faults are owned by the individuals in question. Florida isn't at fault for its teacher's comments. Kansas as a whole is not asked to denounce Mell Kuhn. Virginia did the right thing by voting Jim "Boots" Webb into "Macaca" Allen's seat. Kentucky, by contrast, is full of "working-class, ignorant voters" who are too dumb to realize they are the subjects of a "GOP f*cking over."

Pam, I do deeply respect all of your work. But you haven't shown a whole lot of understanding of Kentucky, and in fact it seems that you are ready to dismiss the whole state because two facts came together. First, there are racists in Kentucky. Second, Kentucky didn't vote for Obama. Ergo, you are ready to give up on the Bluegrass state and wash your hands of the whole deal. You've shown that you'll take any opportunity to raid the cookie jar of excoriation towards Kentucky. Well, I've caught you with your hand in it again, and I must say, you may think Kentucky can do better, but you certainly haven't exceeded my expectations.

*Disclaimer: I am writing this from Tennessee, where I now live and work, but I was born and bred in Kentucky. Make of that what you will.

POSTSCRIPT: I do notice that it's the woman in the video who's the Hillary voter and who repeats that tired Barack Obama is a Muslim! meme that gets called out first by Pam, and then commented on. She does note, after she posts the video, the two equally-drunk men who say "she likes them n----s" despite her protestations of "Black's got nothing to do -- ," albeit without any comment from Pam about the exchange. Is what we have here, perhaps, lingering feelings about The World's Biggest Racist, a/k/a The First Black President, Bill Clinton?

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