Who are you, and what have you done with our Dick Harpootlian?

The Dick Harpootlian we thought we knew.

This probably won’t strike anyone else as ironic, but it’s just weird for me to read something from Dick when he’s in a reverential mode:

Fellow Democrats,

Yesterday was the birthday of a renowned American visionary. He changed the way people look at humanity, and we will never forget his courageous fight for civil rights.

Today we thank Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for teaching us that everyone is equal, and nonviolent methods develop the most admirable outcomes.

He was one of the greatest orators in American history and we will never forget what he did for our country.

Please take this day to offer service to your community; giving back to your neighbor just as Dr. King intended.  By doing this, we are allowing his legacy to continue to flourish today and for many years to come.

– Dick Harpootlian, SCDP Chairman

Just doesn’t sound like Dick. He’s widely believed to have only two gears: wiseacre and ticked off. Yet here’s a third…

3 thoughts on “Who are you, and what have you done with our Dick Harpootlian?

  1. Kevin

    Dick has been one of the most vocal opponents of majority-minority voting districts in South Carolina. This puts him squarely against the vast majority of civil rights leaders, black elected officials, most blacks engaged in the civic process, etc. Without majority-minority districts, you might be able to elect a few more Democrats here or there, but your chances of electing African-Americans to office would be greatly diminished. I wonder how many black Democrats in South Carolina who this about Dick?

  2. Brad

    That’s a complicated question.

    By the way, while I haven’t heard Dick on this subject, in general it sounds like I agree with him.

    And some black Democrats do, too.

    Majority-minority districts were an instrument used by Republicans to gain majority status in SC, and black Democrats helped them do it, thereby creating a larger voting bloc than white Democrats in the reapportionment that followed the 1990 census.

    The effect was to create super-white districts and super-black districts, thereby polarizing our Legislature not only ideologically, but by race as well. And to me, that’s anathema. We need more lawmakers who see themselves as owing their seats to a wide range of South Carolinians — white and black, liberal and conservative — and fewer of these pols who owe their election to narrow slices of the electorate, and know it. This trend has been enormously destructive to good governance.

  3. Kathleen

    Well, the praise of oratory is obviously sincere Harpootlian. As to who “they” are and what “they’ve” done with the rest of him, stay tuned. I suspect he’s just resting up.

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