——These are Macaca monkeys. Senator George Allen called a young American man of Indian ancestry a "macaca" at a campaign function in Virginia this week.
This young man was born in Fairfax County, Virginia and is as American as Allen.
He works for the Jim Webb senatorial campaign and was filming Allen at the time that Allen called him that to the crowd.
Allen was wrong to do this, and more seriously is too stupid to represent Virginia in the US Senate.
I have added the following citation to this post from "The Forward" of an article which describes Allen’s heritage.
I find it hard to believe that Allen did not know of his own rather illustrious ancestry on his mother’s side. This puzzles me because Virginia has a long record of relatively amicable relations among religious communities. Considering Senator Allen’s peculiar behavior, and close adherence to the "line" of the Bush Administration on foreign policy, I will vote for Webb.
I read that Allen’s mother is “French Tunisian,” which I assume means that she was part of the colonial caste of French North Africa. If true, that might explain a lot.
I will vote for Webb.
Since I don’t live in VA, I can’t vote for Webb. He seems very sensible. Compared to the “chickenhawks”, the fact that he actually served and fought in Vietnam and was decorated and was Navy Secretary means that we’ll hopefully get some reality-based thinking on military matters in Congress if he gets elected by Virginians. But what I like about him is he seems a man of character and principle. He resigned as Naval Secretary in 1988 after refusing to agree to a reduction of the Navy’s force structure during congressionally-mandated budget cutting. None of the current crop have done anything like that even with the Iraqi debacle. And I mean specifically folks like Gen. Colin Powell who apparently “disagreed” but could not find the courage of conviction to resign.
I contributed to his primary campaign and have contributed again for the general election.
Have you considered running yourself, Colonel?
Now that could be interesting.
It turns out there is very logical explanation, which is that Sen. Allen was making a very clever joke in Hindi and is only pretending to be stupid. I hope that clears this up.
Don’t run for anything Colonel. Wait for a cabinet post with the Clark-Feigold administration (to commence Jan. 2009).
Webb has my vote also. A couple of weeks ago I told a GOP canvasser I wasn’t supporting Allen for his re-election. I hope this stunt really hurts him in my ethnically diverse neighborhood in Fairfax County.
Webb is a man of principle, and has a brain and values to boot.
Check out his novel “Something to Die For” for a takedown of the chickenhawk mindset.
If you don’t live in VA, you can send money to Webb, as zanzibar and I did:
I can’t vote for Webb, but Allen’s statement seems to confirm he played football without a helmet one time too many.
after reading his “Born Fighting” a year ago, I knew he would be running for something. he seems to combine reason with soul. the country could use him.
Dear Col. Lang,
I can only imagine how strongly you feel regarding Sen. Allen’s remarks – certainly strong enough for you to make an endorsement. Yes, Allen is an idiotic embarassment. And like a few other posters here, I really like Jim Webb, too. He’s next on my list as far as a contribution.
This is nothing against Webb, but he had an unfortunate experience during the Grenada Intervention. You know the saying, “Once a Marine, always a Marine?” Well Webb found out that that’s more in the way of a general guideline instead of a hard and fast rule. He was working as a TV journalist, I believe for the MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour on PBS, covering our boys in Grenada. He was trying to interview some Marines when they turned hostile because he was media. Maybe they were afraid that the media would “lose” Grenada for them too? Anyway, Webb suffered an identity crisis.
“But I’m a MARINE,” he explained. “No you’re NOT!” they replied, and told him to push off. It was really shocking to see their hostility on TV. I guess Marine brotherhood has its limits.
Allen never had my vote. He consistently puts forth the facade of support for the military – all talk and little thought and action. I write on occasion to both Virginia senators on military, retirement and national security issues. I never received a response from Allen other than his monthly pablum (sp?)newsletter while Warner has alway responded. For what its worth, my vote this year will be straight democratic, not something I do usually.
You know, Mr. Lang, you make me proud that my mother is a native Virginian. And I don’t feel that all too often, sorry to say…You and Billmon. (He says he’s 16 generations, I think my mom could come up with nearly that many)
As for Webb, well, I wish him the best.
“This young man was born in Fairfax County, Virginia and is as American as Allen.”
Actually, being Native American, he’s MORE American…
Wonkette made a good post on the episode.
I believe that his parents are from India. pl
Actually the young man working for Webb was South East Asian Indian origin.
That’s why I always use ther terms “Native Americans” and sometimes “Hindu” when the meaning is really ambiguous. I don’t know it Hindu is correct as it probably refers to religion.
It also brings up the question of what it means to be “jewish” in this day of age. We are all part jewish, part french, part arab, part african. Check out the National Geographic Human Geonome site https://www5.nationalgeographic.com/genographic/atlas.html
Consider that George Allen’s mother is of French Tunisian Jewish background. (he speaks fluent French). That makes his Macaca comment all the more culpaple. It goes along with his confederate flag fetish.
That means potentially in a presidentiall race all these people have Jewish connections: Kerry (through grandfather), Clark (his father was a Cohen), and Dean (his children are Jewish through his wife).
The labels are meaningless. In this day and age we all have a shared genetic idenity. Oh darn, that’s what Adam and Eve is about. In some forms of Arabic the human race i referred to a “Banu-Adam.”
Can someone clear up something for me as a Non-American. Was this guy Indian as in native American or Indian as in South Asian?
I vote for men who strike me as having intellect and a sense of American (as in U.S.A.) national values and history. Jim Webb has earned my attention and my support! BTW John Warner also is such a man. He proved this a few years ago when he turned his back, party affiliation be damned, on convicted felon, Senate candidate Ollie North.
I have written Sen. Allen on issues in the past and have NEVER received a response.
I ALSO WILL VOTE FOR WEBB IN NOVEMBER!!
The guy is not native American but an American born to parents from India. However, he has lived in Va. all his life which is more than you can say for Allen. Ditto about Allen never responding to constituents’ mail. But why should he, he says being a Senator is “boring”. I always get a reply from John Warner, never from Allen. I am voting for Webb. Allen is a lot like Bush, an arrogant preppy snot who has a sense of entitlement because of his famous daddy, who talks all tough and militaristic but spent Vietnam avoiding service.
I am working on my husband. He is seriously fed up with Bush but Allen helped the company he works for get started and his boss says “you can go to Allen’s office and sit down and have a chat.” Well, I said, that’s fine, but how many people can do that, and why the heck doesn’t he answer his constituents’ mail?
Apparently Allen’s mom is a French Tunisian and “macaca” is a term there for blacks or Arabs. Knowing the guy was taping him, how could he be so stupid?
Too bad Webb is so underfunded. The Democrats need to get serious and funnel him some cash. I think he would have a chance if he has some $$$. But hopefully Allen’s prez hopes for 2008 are toast. What a jerk!!!
Was this guy Indian as in native American or Indian as in South Asian? – Mo
As Marty points out in his post, this guy is a native born American of Indian(South Asian) ancestry. So he is eligible to run for President of the USA! In fact he is a “real” Virginian – born in VA and lived his entire life in VA. And as others have pointed out more Virginian than Allen who was born in CA and graduated from high school in CA.
As this incident shows, Allen has shown poor judgement as he judged a person’s nationality through his ethnicity. IMO, Allen has shown poor judgement in many other areas too. It seems that Allen was rankled as this young man was following Allen at his various campaign stops and video taping him. But this is no different to what Allen does as he too videotapes the Webb campaign.
In any case I believe Webb is a better candidate than Allen and am glad that PL and many other veterans have endorsed him.
My older son goes to the same high school (TJ in Fairfax County) that the young Webb volunteer who was insulted by Allen graduated from. It is a very diverse school, full of very bright (avg. old SAT score nearly 1500) kids, who along with their families are among the reasons why Virginia has some reasonable levels of economic vitality. For Felix to piss off and piss on the community of people who would continue to support the biggest part of Virginia’s economy says much about his real interests in the state, beyond his fake “Vahjinyah” accent.
I’m fifty and was born in Virginia. Both of my parents were New Englanders, so there was always some question about my birthright. Actually, only a question in my mind as it seemed obvious to everyone I was a Yankee. My formative years were in the Carolinas.
I cringed when I saw the video of Senator Allen. It was a familiar sort of bullying. Allen born outside the South has adopted Virginia as his home after careful study for the part, but he missed significant nuance. His actions were not not merely stupid, but brought dishonor to the citizens he represents.
I’m very pleased to see your endorsement of Jim Webb to represent Virginia in the U.S. Senate.
Agreed that he is way too stupid to be elected to public office. But he was.
I remember watching the Bolton hearings in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and watching the freshman Obama explain very basic committee rules to him.
given the whole tenor of your blog and your writings, is anyone shocked that you would endorse Webb? I mean how hard would it be to generate the list of endorsements for you given the choices? I mean Lamont or Lieberman? What Republican besides maybe Hagel and the North carolina congressman Walter Jones who’s gone anti-war?
Politically, this whole incident is overblown (anyone rememeber Biden’s comment on Indians and 7-11s? Or Hillary in St Louis with her magical comments last year or the year before.) But it will be a mark how resiliant Allen’s Campaign is to see how it recovers from the Post featuring for two days this story on page 1.
nonetheless, I applaud your blog though we generally disagree. I scan it regularly for factoids and relevent analysis. I hope one day to meet you at one of the various fora, NDU or the orgs on either side of the river.
If you want to meet me you have to tell me who you are.
I don’t go to “fora” much anymore. Too much drivel.
I would not live in the “deep north” and so would not have to make the choice you suggest. I have never voted in any Democratic Party primary. Lieberman is the only Democrat I have ever given money to and that was for friendship.
I would certainly like to associate myself with Senator Hagel. Which wars have you fought in?
You are welcome to read along with us. pl
Well according to WSJ online/Zogby Jim Webb has inched past Allen. Which is well within the margin of error – but Allen was heavily favored.
or via Talking Points Memo
There have been a lot of criticism of the chickenhawks for wanting war but not paying any price themselves.
I have just heard that Jim Webb’s son a Marine will be deploying to Iraq within a week. Here’s a guy that believes our invasion of Iraq was a strategic blunder yet since his son has signed up to be a marine he supports his son as he gets shipped off to pacify a civil war and because the Commander-in-Chief does not have the courage to admit an error in judgement.
Another reason to support Jim Webb instead of George “macaca” Allen.