My Wednesday column was an attempt to remind myself that Arizona isn’t alone in the Cuckoo’s Nest:
Arizona has been such a hotbed of wingnuttery and ignorance lately that it’s easy to forget about the almost-as-backwards-and-ridiculous state of South Carolina.
The home of legal firecrackers and the abundantly racist tourist trap called South of the Border has been the reigning super-champion of right-wing demagoguery and radicalism almost since the formation of the country. Toss in its status as the first nation to secede from the United States and the state that re-elected Strom Thurmond to a gajillion consecutive terms in the U.S. Senate, then multiply Mark Sanford’s hike on “the Appalachian Trail,” then throw in their new Jim Crow style Voter ID law, then add in a dash of this guy and you might have a partial view of how wacky South Carolina really is.
As a replacement for Mark Sanford, South Carolinians elected Nikki Haley, a very ethnic choice considering the state’s penchant for whites-only segregation (Strom Thurmond, its decades-long senator, famously filibustered the Civil Rights Act of 1957 — the longest standing filibuster in American history). Even though she was born into the Sikh religion, there aren’t any witch hunts or demands for birth certificates proving her South Carolina heritage — interesting how that works when Republicans have unusual ethnic and religious background versus African American Democrats born in Hawaii.
But it turns out that Haley isn’t just a demagogue against illegal immigrants, she also doesn’t care much for the state’s female population. Continue reading here…