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Old 02-01-2019, 04:05 PM
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Virginia gov. yearbook page has Klan and blackface pictures


I don't think this is going to end well for him assuming he had control over the material on the page .

https://pilotonline.com/news/governm...d70e09b50.html
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:09 PM
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1984? That would have been offensive in 1954. Jesus, what's wrong with people?
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:28 PM
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1984? That would have been offensive in 1954. Jesus, what's wrong with people?
I know, right? Who wears plaid pants like that?
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:13 PM
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talk is that he is the guy in blackface. He is a Dem. and the Lt. Governor is also a Dem if he were to quit.
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:23 PM
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Man, GOP oppo research is for shit. No wonder they have to buy it from Russia!

Anyway, Northam's gotta go, especially if it is him and/or he had editorial control of this page and/or he attended the fucking party.

Fuck it. He should just go.
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:34 PM
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If he's either person or if he chose the picture he should resign.

Crazy.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:30 PM
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If he's either person or if he chose the picture he should resign.
This was 35 years ago when he was young and in school. I'm not sure it tells us much about the man he is today (but the way he responds to it will)—and that's what I think should determine whether or not he should resign.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:40 PM
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This was 35 years ago when he was young and in school. I'm not sure it tells us much about the man he is today (but the way he responds to it will)—and that's what I think should determine whether or not he should resign.
Maybe. I'll try to keep an open mind. But I was in school 35 years ago and would never in a million years have 1) dressed like that and 2) thought it so benign that I would allow a photo like that to be put in a yearbook.

People in the 1980s really did have a clue about racism and shit. Or should have.
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Old 02-01-2019, 08:39 PM
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This was 35 years ago when he was young and in school.
C'mon, he was in medical school. He would have been 24 or 25 when this was published. That's well beyond the "youthful indiscretion" threshold.
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:37 PM
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med school says the pictures are legit and the publication was student produced.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry...b08710475367de
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:42 PM
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Well, well, well...

So much dumb stuff preserved for eternity.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:17 PM
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Well, well, well...

So much dumb stuff preserved for eternity.
And that's before iPhones!

Last edited by Northern Piper; 02-01-2019 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 02-01-2019, 04:45 PM
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have to wonder if this turned up in a simple google search , if so that does show really bad research before the election by the GOP. Or maybe they just started contacting members of his class to see if anyone had this kind of document.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:00 PM
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have to wonder if this turned up in a simple google search , if so that does show really bad research before the election by the GOP. Or maybe they just started contacting members of his class to see if anyone had this kind of document.
Well, it probably wouldn't have struck the GOP as offensive.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:19 PM
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The Good Doctor is probably feeling a mite sick about right now.

Hopefully they can "keep him comfortable" while his political career is lovingly, humanely terminated...

Last edited by Royal Nonesutch; 02-01-2019 at 05:21 PM.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:25 PM
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have to wonder if this turned up in a simple google search , if so that does show really bad research before the election by the GOP. Or maybe they just started contacting members of his class to see if anyone had this kind of document.
It doesn't make the Dems research look very good either.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:31 PM
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State Senate Minority Leader Richard L. Saslaw is defending him. To paraphrase, "Hey, it's not nice to look at people's pasts. Sure wouldn't want anyone paying attention to whatever I did as a young adult!"
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:32 PM
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That guy is having a BAD week.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:38 PM
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I don't think this is going to end well for him assuming he had control over the material on the page .

https://pilotonline.com/news/governm...d70e09b50.html
Well ho-lee fucking shit. That was my first thought. Second? "The fucking school agreed to put that in the yearbook"??
Anyway, fuck that guy. Sorry he's a Democrat in Redville, but fuck him.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:14 PM
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Well ho-lee fucking shit. That was my first thought. Second? "The fucking school agreed to put that in the yearbook"??
Anyway, fuck that guy. Sorry he's a Democrat in Redville, but fuck him.
Agreed that he should resign, but Virginia is no longer Redville, and the governorship should be safely blue assuming the Democrats run a decent candidate in the next election.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:32 PM
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Is it a great opportunity for the Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax? Virginia governors cannot serve successive terms. Should Northam resign and Fairfax take over, would he be eligible to run in 2021? If so, that would be advantageous.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:35 PM
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I'm a democrat who wants democrats to win as much power as possible, but Northam is fvcked. There's no way he can recover. If this had been discovered during the campaign and if voters had voted for him in spite of it, that would have been one thing. But there's no way we can support Northam now. The Commonwealth can do better.
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Old 02-01-2019, 05:56 PM
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My first reaction was "He was so young and it was so long ago."

My second reaction was "But Kavanaugh..."

He should probably resign, and I say this as a hyperpartisan Democrat. While also acknowledging that there would be no possibility of that happening if he were Republican.

Last edited by jayjay; 02-01-2019 at 05:57 PM.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:18 PM
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Maybe. I'll try to keep an open mind. But I was in school 35 years ago and would never in a million years have 1) dressed like that and 2) thought it so benign that I would allow a photo like that to be put in a yearbook.

People in the 1980s really did have a clue about racism and shit. Or should have.
But that's not my point. What you're saying isn't relevant to what I said. It wasn't about the excusability or okayness of what he did—it was about who he is today.

Condemning someone for being racist (or racially insensitive or whatever) is one thing. Condemning someone for having been racist decades ago, if they've grown up and wised up since then, is something else.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:26 PM
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That's true, and if he'd like to prove it he can quit his high paying pension including government job, and volunteer his services in impoverished areas. That's how he demonstrates what he believes rather than pay lip service to what he wants you to believe he believes.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:30 PM
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Condemning someone for being racist (or racially insensitive or whatever) is one thing. Condemning someone for having been racist decades ago, if they've grown up and wised up since then, is something else.
I agree. What kind of public servant has he been? Judge him by that. Do we believe in rehabilitation or do we just pay lip service to the idea? Do we believe that people can change or not?
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:44 PM
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But that's not my point. What you're saying isn't relevant to what I said. It wasn't about the excusability or okayness of what he did—it was about who he is today.

Condemning someone for being racist (or racially insensitive or whatever) is one thing. Condemning someone for having been racist decades ago, if they've grown up and wised up since then, is something else.
As I said, I'd keep an open mind. Are there really people who were that clueless as young adults who have now seen the light? I'm trying to imagine what he could say to convince me he realizes how awful that was and how he's changed.
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Old 02-01-2019, 07:03 PM
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He's my gov. I like what he's been doing, especially with regards to the Chesapeake Bay (not that that's my bread and butter or anything ).

That said, this is not good at all. If he had browned up his face to look like, say, Eddie Murphy, I wouldn't give a good gotdamn. But this isn't innocent cosplay. That picture shows a couple of edgelords trying to get laughs off of racism and terrorism, from an audience that was overwhelmingly privileged enough to never have to worry about those things. And now one of those edgelords has been rewarded with the governorship.

I don't want him to resign, but I know why others are calling for it. The racial climate of the country is not great right now. If we have another Charlottesville this year, it's not going to be cute when the governor calls for us all to get along and those who don't want that redirect everyone's attention to that yearbook picture. The Dems also need a clean house to lie in stark contrast with the GOP's dirty one. As long as there are dust bunnies under the bed, the GOP can play the "both sides" card.

Northam has done a great job in the little time he's had. He can take pride in this if he does step down.
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Old 02-01-2019, 07:52 PM
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I agree. What kind of public servant has he been? Judge him by that. Do we believe in rehabilitation or do we just pay lip service to the idea? Do we believe that people can change or not?
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As I said, I'd keep an open mind. Are there really people who were that clueless as young adults who have now seen the light? I'm trying to imagine what he could say to convince me he realizes how awful that was and how he's changed.
If this was just an isolated (if utterly clueless) mistake, he can be rehabilitated. His life isn't over, he isn't going to prison.

But I don't see how he can be rehabilitated as governor. The job is not all about him. It's about the people he represents - and they surely have a right to transparent certainty about anyone in such a position.

It feels pretty pathetic to be talking about ethical standards for those in public office given who we have in the White House. But perhaps that just makes it all the more important for Dems to hold the line.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:39 AM
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As I said, I'd keep an open mind. Are there really people who were that clueless as young adults who have now seen the light? I'm trying to imagine what he could say to convince me he realizes how awful that was and how he's changed.
He could say "some of my best Lt Governors are African American".

It's hard to chalk this up to youthful indiscretion. This was the reasoning skills of an adult in medical school in 1984. This is how he wanted to be remembered. Unless it was from a stage play on the evils of racism I can't imagine how he can explain this.

He didn't just shoot himself in the foot politically he cast a shadow over his medical career.
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Old 02-02-2019, 11:11 AM
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We all know how this will end. He will resign, no later than Feb 3. If he was a Republican, this would be quickly forgotten. But Democrats are, and should be, held to a higher standard- as Al Franken can attest.
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Old 02-02-2019, 11:14 AM
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He could say "some of my best Lt Governors are African American".
ISWYDT, but I'll still note that Fairfax isn't his Lt Gov: in Virginia, each of the three statewide officials (Gov, Lt Gov, AG) run separately and are voted on separately. A VA gubernatorial candidate doesn't pick a Lt Gov candidate as his/her running mate.


ETA: now they're saying the presser will be at 2:30pm.

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  #33  
Old 02-02-2019, 12:11 PM
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This was 35 years ago when he was young and in school. I'm not sure it tells us much about the man he is today (but the way he responds to it will)—and that's what I think should determine whether or not he should resign.
Not that young, and certainly old enough to know better. I would not hold it against him if I found out he was my doctor, or my neighbor, or my client. But, we do need to hold the people who not only set policy, but also act as role models to a higher standard. There are plenty of people in this world who want power, we can afford to be a bit picky as to who we give those reins to.

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This whole thing is just ghoulish the more I think about it. With future elected officials having grown up saturated in social media, we're in for a heck of ride.
Not that much. That we have more information to make informed decisions about who we choose to represent us is not a bad thing. The only ones who would think it is a bad thing are those with something to hide.

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If you were to judge me even by who was just ten years ago, you'd be looking at a completely different person. I'm embarrassed, regretful, and ashamed of some of the mistakes I've made just ten years ago! If I was fighting for what I believed in today with a new outlook, in a more mature and well-adjusted place, and somebody brought up some awful thing I did in my twenties, I'd feel deeply wronged. That's not who I am today, that's not what I stand for, and I distance myself from those mistakes completely, and have moved forward from them.

This is called being human. And our elected officials are no different.
Yes, that would be a good description of the lack of accountability that is rather rampant int he Republican party these days. "Well yeah, what I did was awful, but you should feel ashamed of yourself for bringing it up."

If you know you did awful things in your 20's, apologize for them now and start your repentance for your sins. Getting upset that someone brings up something that you did, and only offering a grudging non-apology if that for "anyone who may have been offended", is too little too late.

Since you know these awful things you did, should you ever run for office, I would suggest getting out in front, and laying them out before you get too far in your campaign. Your voters may reward your honesty, and find your repentance to be sincere, or they may find your actions too egregious to accept. Either way, they are making an informed decision as to whether or not you are what they want to lead them.

If you hide it, and they only find out after, then they will be less forgiving.

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If politicians have to recollect every affair, every off color joke or comment, every poor choice in robes and pointy hats we might be in for a long series of confessionals. Imagine if everyone’s internet search history was public knowledge.
I can remember every single time in my life that I have dressed up in blackface or klan robes, can you?

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Recall that a few weeks ago, the Academy Awards chose Kevin Hart to host the Oscars this year. And shortly thereafter, he was dropped from the job due to some bad jokes on Twitter about homosexuality. And since then, they haven't been able to find anyone to take his place.

If a certain job means having every stupid or offensive thing a person has ever posted online or made public anywhere else will be dragged out in public at great length, and then used to wreck one's career, the number of people willing to do that job may suddenly drop. To zero, in some cases.
Depends on the perks of the job. If getting a MW job at McDonalds required that sort of background check, then no one would want to flip burgers.
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If the Democrats decide that every poorly chosen, decades-old joke by one of their politicians should be a career ender, they might likewise find that the number of people wanting to run for office as Democrats will decrease.
There is no shortage of people who desire power. Winnowing that field down to those who have not dressed up in blackface with a KKK member shouldn't prevent us from finding qualified candidates.

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It probably was, when I saw the headline "Calls for resignation as VA governor apologizes for racist year book photo" I assumed he was a Republican. Republicans usually have all the 'best' racists.

We'll see if CNN makes an on air correction or if they go the FOX News route and mention it on a web page somewhere or in some cases never make a correction at all.
Yeah, when I first saw the healding, I thought, "Gee, 'nother racist Republican... wait, I thought they elected a democrat as governor. Yeah, well, fuck. He's gotta go."
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I don't care if it was over 30 years ago. That means he's had over 30 years to apologize. Instead he 'forgot' about it or actively buried it. He's only chosen to apologize after he was caught. He needs to go.
He had to have known that that existed, and hoping that something like that just doesn't come out shows poor judgement as well.

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I haven't read the whole thread, but I know that I am not the only person who is wondering what kind of weirdo they had for a yearbook advisor.
As an adult, they are probably given pretty free authority over the content, but still... someone should have thought that was a bad idea.

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If the Lt. Governor happened to be a Republican, it would be fascinating to see the responses here.
What do you think would be different? Democrats would be calling for a republican to step down as well.
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The photo is a hideous disgrace. He should step down immediately.
Hey, fascinating, we agree on something.


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I mean, if you want to propose the most generous narrative one could possibly imagine, let's really go for it...

He got the nickname "coonman" years before from a knife fight with a family of raccoons. Years later, because of the hilarious double meaning of the nickname, naughty college buddies prepared an extremely elaborate joke costume with blackface, got him completely drunk and convinced him to wear it, posed next to KKK guy, then took a photo. You can't tell that he's so drunk that he doesn't know what he's doing because, you know, blackface - and the invisible broom propping him up. And the college yearbook has a tradition that your buddies can contribute the most embarrassing photo of you they can find and you have no veto.
I was thinking more or less along the same lines for the extenuating circumstances that would make this less horrific.

And even still, you should come out ahead of it. When you first think about going into politics, you say, "So, I have an embarrassing* story of when I was in medical school..."



*embarrassing may not be the right word, but it would be up to a politician to come up with the right words.
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Old 02-02-2019, 01:02 PM
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He could say "some of my best Lt Governors are African American".

It's hard to chalk this up to youthful indiscretion. This was the reasoning skills of an adult in medical school in 1984. This is how he wanted to be remembered. Unless it was from a stage play on the evils of racism I can't imagine how he can explain this.

He didn't just shoot himself in the foot politically he cast a shadow over his medical career.
...and that's why I think Trump and Steve King, at least, should resign.

--Not Magiver
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:35 PM
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My first reaction was "He was so young and it was so long ago."

My second reaction was "But Kavanaugh..."

He should probably resign, and I say this as a hyperpartisan Democrat. While also acknowledging that there would be no possibility of that happening if he were Republican.
Since I'm not a member of either major political party, I'm not obligated to take a partisan stance. I don't care what was in Brett Kavanaugh's high school yearbook. I don't care what was in Ralph Northam's med school yearbook. Why should I care?

I know plenty of people who said or did stupid or offensive things while in high school, college, or grad school, and then grew up and became model citizens. I don't see any advantage to anyone in creating a culture where the dumbest thing that a person said in their youth circles back and harms them 30 years later. Who benefits from that?

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Old 02-02-2019, 08:02 AM
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Since I'm not a member of either major political party, I'm not obligated to take a partisan stance. I don't care what was in Brett Kavanaugh's high school yearbook. I don't care what was in Ralph Northam's med school yearbook. Why should I care?
Not caring about past racist or sexist behavior is implicitly a partisan stance because it is the same stance as the Republican party. Perhaps you're not a card-carrying member, but if you support what they support and attack what they attack, then that's really a distinction without a difference. Nobody buys it.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:00 PM
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My first reaction was "He was so young and it was so long ago."

My second reaction was "But Kavanaugh..."
Well, exactly. They both did rude shit decades ago. One seems to have grown out of the insensitivity, and the other not so much.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:12 PM
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Well, exactly. They both did rude shit decades ago. One seems to have grown out of the insensitivity, and the other not so much.
Yeah, Kavanaugh was a douchebag kid who grew up to be a douchebag adult and lied about being a douchebag kid. Northam at least admitted (mostly, but without saying which person is him) to being a douchebag and offered an actual apology, not an I'm-sorry-if-you-were-offended fake apology. I lean toward thinking he should resign, but I see Northam and Kavanaugh as very different.
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Old 02-02-2019, 03:32 AM
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I lean toward thinking he should resign, but I see Northam and Kavanaugh as very different.
I see Northam and Kavanaugh as being very different too.

Kavanaugh was a spoiled shit who wrote some vile, ugly things about young women in his yearbook back when he was 16 or 17 years of age, clearly showing him to be a smug, arrogant little bastard.

Northam proudly dressed up in the ceremonial garb of a racist hate group that savagely, indiscriminantly murdered thousands of Americans on the basis of ethnicity or religion, a group that still in the minds of millions of Americans today is spiritually akin to German Nazis of the 1940's, back when he was a 25 year-old medical student.

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  #40  
Old 02-02-2019, 09:46 AM
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My first reaction was "He was so young and it was so long ago."

My second reaction was "But Kavanaugh..."

He should probably resign, and I say this as a hyperpartisan Democrat.
I say he doesn't resign. No use shooting yourself in the foot with your opponents gun. I'm not feeling charitable these days.

It might be politically wise to resign, but I think trolling the GOP's two facedness will make me feel better than punishing this person right about now.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:24 AM
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I say he doesn't resign. No use shooting yourself in the foot with your opponents gun. I'm not feeling charitable these days.

It might be politically wise to resign, but I think trolling the GOP's two facedness will make me feel better than punishing this person right about now.
You don't show that you respect and value your coalition partners by ignoring their concerns so you can schadenfreude more. The Democratic party is a coalition party that's made up, in large part (not majority, but very large part), by African-Americans, and this is a slap in the face to them, generally. It's not a good look at all to be saying "We should ignore this because it was something that happened decades ago."
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Old 02-02-2019, 02:31 PM
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My first reaction was "He was so young and it was so long ago."

My second reaction was "But Kavanaugh...".
There is a huge difference between resigning a job for which you were elected by the will of the people- vs simply not getting a promotion to a better job.

If those revelations about Kavanaugh had come out after he had joined the Supreme Court, I would say "Too late!".

I say he should not resign. But if he does, that's Ok too.
  #43  
Old 02-02-2019, 02:53 PM
UltraVires is offline
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There is a huge difference between resigning a job for which you were elected by the will of the people- vs simply not getting a promotion to a better job.

If those revelations about Kavanaugh had come out after he had joined the Supreme Court, I would say "Too late!".
I'm not following this point. If the idea is that because of action X we don't want a person to be our Governor for the next four years, why is it not equally valid if you find out six months after election to say that because of action X we don't want him there for the next three and a half?

I don't think he should resign, but he is killing himself with this poor explanation and dodging the obvious question he was asked several times.

I think that something along the lines of "I have always abhorred racism, but I grew up in a rural area of the Tidewater area of Virginia. Some of my friends who were not as progressive as me on race would sometimes get drunk and dress up in KKK hoods and blackface as a joke. At the time, I did not realize that this "joke" was not funny at all and has real harmful implications for many people. That is one of the reasons that 25 year olds are too young to become governor. I think my record for the past thirty years, blah, blah, blah" I could accept.

Now, many others might not be able to accept it, but people can change and grow. But his explanation of why he said it was him, or why he believed that it could have possibly been him when he states with certainty that the only time it happened was the Michael Jackson thing just doesn't make sense. He was given several opportunities to answer that question but he reverted to his talking points.
  #44  
Old 02-02-2019, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by UltraVires View Post
I'm not following this point. If the idea is that because of action X we don't want a person to be our Governor for the next four years, why is it not equally valid if you find out six months after election to say that because of action X we don't want him there for the next three and a half?
.
Do you not see the difference between getting fired and being denied a promotion?
  #45  
Old 02-02-2019, 03:14 PM
HMS Irruncible is offline
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If those revelations about Kavanaugh had come out after he had joined the Supreme Court, I would say "Too late!".
The thing with Kavanaugh is different though. Those were contested allegations that depended on the testimony of a few people. It was totally appropriate during confirmation and I wish it sank Kavanaugh, but sitting judges or governors shouldn't be burdened with that kind of stuff. Also, politically speaking, it's a heavy lift to impeach a SCOTUS judge.

But if something incontrovertible and criminal came out about Kavanaugh? Yes, impeach the man, no matter how long ago. It blows my mind that we barely touched the issue of $200,000 credit card debt he had... for baseball tickets. Who even has $200,000 in credit card debt? Who were these tickets for and what happened to them? How did he pay off $200,000 in credit card debt? I suspect there's at least 1 crime hiding in there, I think it should be investigated, and if proven, then he should be impeached.

A governor's position is also different in that it is an explicitly partisan position. Democrats have a right and duty to decide who they want to represent them and who they want to work with. If they decide a governor doesn't represent who they are, and his lieutenant is also a Democrat, then it's obvious they should ask him to step down and thwart his legislative agenda until he does so. It's a no-brainer.

I would struggle with this a little more if it meant handing the governorship to a Republican. Democrats would have to decide which is worse, the embarrassment and hypocrisy of tolerating a past racist, or giving Republicans the reins to continue gutting voter's rights in Virginia, which is a serious problem there and everywhere else. You don't cling to one principle if it means giving a position of power to someone likely to offend that principle even more severely. Would be a tough call and I'm glad it isn't necessary.
  #46  
Old 02-01-2019, 06:03 PM
Bijou Drains is offline
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every Dr. in the yearbook will be contacted by the media if they can be located. They will probably have reporters at their offices 1st thing Monday
  #47  
Old 02-01-2019, 06:04 PM
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He admitted that he's one of the people in the photo.

Get out please. Jesus Christ.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local...=.a16387890d80
  #48  
Old 02-01-2019, 06:09 PM
Royal Nonesutch is offline
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Originally Posted by Snarky_Kong View Post
He admitted that he's one of the people in the photo.
Well, with personal integrity like that, it's clear that the "White House" is a place where he would feel very comfortable indeed...
  #49  
Old 02-01-2019, 06:17 PM
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Not to mention that the Lt. Gov. is also a Democrat, so if he does resign as he should the gov will still be Dem.
  #50  
Old 02-01-2019, 06:34 PM
Kolak of Twilo's Avatar
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Originally Posted by jayjay View Post
Not to mention that the Lt. Gov. is also a Democrat, so if he does resign as he should the gov will still be Dem.
Actually, Lt. Gov Justin Fairfax does seem to be a pretty decent guy. And I bet there won't be any pictures of him dressed up in Klan gear in his yearbook or anywhere else.
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