Well, here we go again. The AP story has already been picked up by The Seattle Times and The Houston Chronicle, just for starters:
COLUMBIA, S.C. — An African-American lawmaker in South Carolina said Tuesday that stricter illegal immigration laws would hurt the state because blacks and whites don’t work as hard as Hispanics.
State Sen. Robert Ford made his remarks during a Senate committee debate over an Arizona-style immigration law, eliciting a smattering of nervous laughter in the chamber after he said “brothers” don’t work as hard as Mexicans. He continued that his “blue-eyed brothers” don’t either.
Once his ancestors were freed from slavery, he said, they didn’t want to do any more hard work, so they were replaced by Chinese and Japanese.
“We need these workers here. A lot of people aren’t going to do certain type of work in this country,” said Ford, D-Charleston. “The brothers are going to find ways to take a break. Ever since this country was built, we’ve had somebody do the work for us.”
He recalled to senators that four workers in the country illegally showed up on his lawn and finished mowing, edging and other work in 30 minutes that would take others much longer, and only wanted $10 for the job. He went on to say he recommended the workers to his neighbors, and one local lawn care businessman lost work — a story one senator remarked was hurting, not helping, his case.
Both the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the National Association for the Advancement of White People — no wait; that second one should be the GOP — are less than pleased by the remarks. The latter is even less pleased than the former.
For my part, the senator from Comic Relief provokes several thoughts:
- He just really says what he thinks, doesn’t he? I think he’s bucking for the Fritz Hollings Appalling Outburts Award, but he’s trying too hard. (And he’s not nearly as funny.)
- After those immigrants did all that hard work on his land for a pittance, did they break out in a stirring rendition of “Cielito Lindo,” to let the boss man know how happy they were? That’s about all that’s missing from that anecdote, to make it complete.
- Illegal immigrants have a warm-enough time of it with all the enemies they have in SC politics. They really, really don’t need a friend like Robert Ford.
- Of blacks and whites, he said “Everybody in America finds ways to take a break.” Maybe it’s time that Sen. Ford took a permanent break from service in our Legislature.
Robert Ford, of course, has been causing both blacks and whites to roll their eyes for years. Remember his proposal to keep the Confederate flag atop the State House, but add to it a Black Liberation Flag? Nothing like that for unifying our state — a flag for the white folks (or some of them) and one to keep the black folks happy, too. What joy. (As he put it, “They would keep their flag, we would get a flag and we would keep our mouths shut.”) Oh, and how about when he and fellow senator Glenn McConnell did their act where Robert would wear a dashiki and Glenn one of his many Confederate uniforms? Those crazy cutups.
I have an idea: let’s start fining politicians for making really tacky remarks that gratuitously offend a number of people. We can take that money and add it to the fund of whatever government service that person hates the most. That way, we might have either better behaved politicians or more/better services.
Good idea. Those fines would wipe out our deficit in no time.
I like that idea. I wish that law was in place last year, when SC Guv’not Sanford hiked the Appalachian Trail and Rep Joe Wilson embarrassed South Carolina.
A great read! And as usual, super points also.
Here’s a treasure hunt for you…
I’ve searched and searched, and not found an image anywhere from one of those TV appearances McConnell and Ford made together with Glenn in (one of) his Confederate uniform(s) and Robert in African-themed garb.
When I searched Google Images for “‘robert ford’ heritage ‘glenn mcconnell’ uniform african,” I got such things as this, which is very special in its own way, but not what I wanted. Weird how that algorithm works sometimes. I got this image on that search, for instance, and though I studied it closely at length (what could the link be? her tattoo, perhaps), I could not figure out the connection.
Of course, Jake can’t keep ’em straight, either, as Jon Stewart noted (“This guy’s the worst racist I’ve ever heard!”). He just doesn’t really know his epithets.
The term he was looking for — which would have covered both a man of partly Kenyan extraction and a Sikh — was “wog.” You know, the British colonial epithet for dismissing the darker-skinned natives of the further reaches of Empire.
By the way, don’t bandy that one about. In most parts of the world, it’s considered extremely offensive, somewhat as the “N word” is here. Perhaps that’s why Jake didn’t use it. Do ya think?
But I digress. Again.
Since she’s neither black nor white, I’ll bet the girl in that picture referenced above is a hard worker. Of course, she looks kind of asian, which would indicate she’s smart, too…
I’m trying to figure all this out… I wonder where “ragheads” fit into the picture? Are they good workers? Maybe we should get Sens. Ford and Knotts to teach a seminar to help us keep all those generalizations straight.
As a pale-skinned, hazel-eyed sister, I guess I’m a good choice for hard labor?
Robert Ford is a Christine O’Donnell for a different demographic, I guess.
Wait wait… Nikki Haley is a brown-eyed sister, so he’s really saying she should be doing some heavy lifting..it’s all in the coding, Brad!
Maybe we should issue “Better Off Learning of Common Sense” cards to people who have demonstrated the ability to think before speaking and not insert foot into mouth.
The BOLOCS (pronounced “bollocks”) cards would be red with yellow lettering, and would be waved in the face of Robert Ford or others who utter such idiocy.