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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 18, 2006 / 24 Menachem-Av, 5766

Macaca happens

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker
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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Sen. George Allen's macaca moment has granted the nation a few days' reprieve from thoughts of mass murder and provided a new vocab word for the zeitgeist.


For those who've somehow slept through the Sturm und Drang surrounding Allen's recent use of the word "macaca,'' the story is this: He was stumping in Virginia with about 100 fans when he decided to recognize a young volunteer for his Democratic opponent, James Webb.


The fellow had been following Allen's tour, filming him, as is customary for both campaigns.


"This fellow here, over here with the yellow shirt, Macaca, or whatever his name is. ... He's following us around everywhere. And it's just great,'' Allen said to appreciative laughter.


Doubtless no one present knew what "macaca'' meant, but subsequently, those three syllables have caused a tectonic shift in the political plates. Literally, it's the name of a monkey common to North Africa and Asia; figuratively, it's a racial slur in some parts of the world.


And in the U.S., effective last Friday, it's an eponym for "major political boo-boo.''


The young man at the center of this pre-JonBenet media phenomenon is S.R. Sidarth, an American of Indian descent. Which is to say, he is a person of color and the only one present that day in an otherwise pale crowd.


Sidarth charged that Allen singled him out on account of his complexion — and not because he was holding a video cam — and the incident has exploded as a racist-in-America story.


Everyone from political scientists to linguists to Tarot card readers has weighed in: Is Allen a racist? Has he ruined his chances for president in '08? Was he or wasn't he mean to his siblings in 1958?


Allen has apologized for hurting Sidarth's feelings, while his spokespeople have said that "macaca'' was a made-up word Allen's staff created as a way of referring to the interlocutor.


According to one version, Allen was trying to say "mohawk,'' referring to Sidarth's hairstyle, which is also the subject of much debate. Is it a mohawk, or is it a mullet?


Another version holds that macaca is a combination of the "mo'' in ``mohawk'' and "caca,'' Spanish for what often follows the English word "bull'' when one is unconvinced of another's sincerity or truthfulness.


The latter sounds more likely. Mohawk-to-macaca doesn't quite pass the tongue-tied test. "Mocaca'' for "——head,'' sounds about right for the sort of nicknaming that goes on in the back of campaign buses.


Allen's campaign manager, Dick Wadhams, told me that Allen didn't know the meaning of macaca and credibly argued that no politician — especially one with presidential aspirations — would use a racial slur in such a public way.


"Why would he do that, period? It doesn't make any sense. The camera was on him. This wasn't a case where a politician thinks no one is watching. He knew that was going out. Why would he endanger his entire trip by making a comment that would come back to haunt him?''


And so. The macaca mystery is upon us. Did Allen know that macaca means monkey? Did he know it is often used as a slur? Is he a racist? Allen owns a Confederate flag, as nearly everyone has mentioned during this tempest. He also reportedly plastered his high school car with a Confederate bumper sticker and wore a Confederate flag lapel pin in his high school senior picture.


I don't know if Allen is a racist. I do know that owning a Confederate flag is not a damning offense if you're a collector of Southern memorabilia, as Allen is. And high school is, well, high school.


Here's what we may fairly conclude from Allen's macaca meltdown: he was a rude cad. And, despite his Confederate accoutrements, his cowboy boots, his chaw, his good ol' boy persona, Allen is missing the key ingredient in his Southern shtick: you gotta be a gentleman.


The mark of a gentleman — Southern or otherwise — is graciousness toward others less fortunate or less powerful. Singling out a young person for ridicule — a lone Democrat in a crowd of rowdy Republicans — is behavior unbecoming a gentleman, a senator and certainly a president.


For his sin, Allen should write a sincere note of apology to Sidarth — the gentlemanly thing to do — and then chill the hick act. Surely even bubbas are bored with Bubba by now.

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