Saturday, February 2, 2019

I Support Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam

Current media is denouncing  VA Gov Ralph Northam with many demanding he resign now over an unfortunate incident in his youth.

I note that that the final crucial person who gave us Obamacre was  the late Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia.  He was in his youth a member of the Klu Klux Klan, indeed held some office in it. In the end when the ultimate votes in the Senate came, which had Rebublicans denouncing him over his 1940s support of the KKK, and  some of them openly hoping he would die as he was in bad health and did die rereafter, Robert Byrd did show up for the ultimately  crucial vote, wheeled in in a wheelchair, to cast the ultimstely finsl crucial vote that gave us  ACA/Obamacre, which despite its many flaws has  imroved the health of many people in America.

Regarding Ralh Northam, an extremely excellent and super competent governor  of Virginiia, a  few days ago, affrimered the right of women to make the ultimate desicisons regarding their bodies with the support of just one doctoe (three are now needed), he has just been deonouned on alt-reich and even Hannity outlets for his defense of a woman'ss right to choose. The attacks on him from the organized right on this matter have been horrendous.  They have accused him of supporting "infanticde."  This charge is disgusting and falose.  But the GOP istrying to make his supremely responsible and medically wise view a crime. They are just hypocrites.

I will not call those now demanding Northam's resignation over hiis unfortunate photo from 35 years ago hypocritees.  Indeed I sypathaize, especially wiith African Americans, who have had to facr all kinds of racism here in Virrgina as in the awful violence in Charlottesville in 2017 as well as the ongoing refusal at the sattate level to allow local governments to remove Confederate statues and monuments.   It may well be that Northam will feel in the end that he must resign for his youthful mistake.  But I think iit will be unfortuate as he really has been a good governor ans is personally a nice guy (I have met him).  The pboto certainly does not represent his current views at all.

Addendum, 3:25 PM, 2/2/19

I fear that I am increasingly leaning to Northam needing to resign, despite my generally high regard for him.  He has just made a public statement that has really confused things, and I fear he may simply have fatally damaged his governorship with how he has messed this story up.  He is now claiming that he is not in the photo, but says he did blacken his face once in 1984 to pretend to be Michael Jackson for a dance or skit, where he even won a prize (ugh).  He also says he is not the person now he was then and is begging for forgiveness.  I guess he deserves the latter, but he made a real botch of this, and I fear it will not get better.  Ironically the lt. gov who would replace him if he were to resign, Justin Fairfax, is African American.  Anyway, I am sorry about this whole situation, but now fear Northam simply cannot clean up the mess he has made of it.

Barkley Rosser


Anonymous said...

Agreed, however the Governor will be much weakened.

Anonymous said...

This is a bold essay, and I am impressed.

Anonymous said...

I was wrong, I listened to the guy just now and can no longer support remaining in office. At least know how to apologize and ask forgivness and stop there.

Anonymous said...

Well, I will pay no more attention to the story, which is too discouraging, but the impact of the governor from here on will from here on be small.

Anonymous said...

Clarifying, the posting of the grotesque yearbook picture under the name of Ralph Northam was intentionally racist and no matter who posed for the picture Northam is responsible for having the picture posted.

2slugbaits said... matter who posed for the picture Northam is responsible for having the picture posted.

I'm not following this. Assuming for the moment that Northam is not the one in the photo and assuming for the moment that he had no involvement in the production of the yearbook, then how would he be responsible for having the picture posted??? I have no idea as to the actual facts of the case, but if he's not the one in the photo (and I don't know whether he is or isn't), then I'm having a hard time understanding why he would be responsible for an error in the production of a yearbook unless he was on the yearbook committee, which he wasn't.

Anonymous said...

No editor would post a crazily racist picture in a yearbook without a request by the person whose section it was posted in. If a mistake was made, the person would have immediately complained and had the yearbook reprinted for such a serious mistake.

Northam is responsible, even if a mistake was made. I would immediately make sure such a picture was taken out of the yearbook were I the person involved, even if I had to go to court. Northam was responsible.

Anonymous said...

Being depicted as racist because of a "mistake," would be intolerable for any ordinary person. I realize now how racist Northam was to have allowed such a rotten picture to be printed in his section of the yearbook.

2slugbaits said...

I think you're assuming facts not yet in evidence. I would agree that if he knew such a picture was in the yearbook, then he should have disavowed it long ago. But that assumes he was in fact aware of what was in the yearbook. My understanding was that he hadn't seen the yearbook. Maybe that's true or maybe it's not, but ignorance of what's in someone's yearbook doesn't sound implausible to me. Not everyone bothers to purchase one. I sure didn't. said...

A couple more comments on this.

One is that it is unfortunate that we now do not know what the baasic facts are and may not get to know. How did this awful photo get on Northam's med school yearbook page? Just how racist was he back then? How and when and where did he "blackface" and what photos was he in, if any?

As already noted I was initially ready to give him the benefit of the doubt, to treat him as a reformed Roberrt Byrd, someone who did bad when young, but admitted it clearly, apologized fully, and seemed to have behaved well since then. But now he has upended all that with this garbled conufused mess.

Another point that I was thinking of but is now more on my mind involves when all this happened. Yes, 1984 is now 35 years ago, some time well in the past. But, unfortunately not all that far in the past. I was livingin in Virginia in 1984, and, frankly, I never heeard of anybody then who was not some screaming racist putting on blackface or dressing up as a KKK member. In fact, I never heard of anybody doing it at all. Civil rights had happend a couple odecades earlier. That stuff was over, gone, or supposedly so. I do not know which med school Northam attended, but the fact thaat this stuff was not only going on then but ending up in photos in yearbooks is really quite astounding.

Robert Byrd's KKK period was the 1940s. Jim Crow was in place and pretty much completely accepted by whites in the South. He grew out of all that, in the 60s. If Northam's transgressions had been in say 1954 or even maybe as late as 1964, they might be easier to forgive. But by 1984 this sort of thing had long become pretty much completely unacceptable by most people in Virginia. What was he thinking? That he did not think too well then may be why he is having so much trouble tinking striaght now about how to handle this. Unforturtunately, it does seem it is time for him to go.

not trampis said...

regarding women's bodies? more importantly it regards babies bodies

Anonymous said...

Judging by the New York Times coverage, Northam's political influence will be gone from here no matter his ultimate decision. The press conference was evidently viewed as ruinous. I would hope the medical school could investigate the placing of the picture in the yearbook no matter how the picture came to be taken or who was in the picture. Very hurtful in all.