BEBE SANTA-WOOD, Political Columnist
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich is a miracle worker. Despite the fact that politically he’s a Clinton-era fossil, he’s not only managed to become a front-runner within the Republican candidate race, but he actually won a state. This befuddles me, but maybe each of the primary states wants to prove how individual and special they are by picking their own special lil’ candidate.
Iowa chose former Senator Rick Santorum, signaling to us that many Republican voters in Iowa want to believe Jesus rode a dinosaur to church (which is a nice thought with which I’m totally on board). New Hampshire picked Romney, my favorite Republican candidate. He is my favorite for no other reason than the fact that he is a man destined to be one of the robot presidents in Disney World’s “Hall of Presidents” (if you aren’t aware what that attraction is, than I guess I was the only eight-year old who wanted to see a robot Abe Lincoln). Romney oozes a stiff unrelatable awkwardness that translates very well to robotic technology.
So that left South Carolina with the choice of either Representative Ron Paul or Gingrich—and no one votes for Ronny unless they smoke weed and wear a tin foil hat to protect them from government infiltration. Gingrich on the other hand—well, Gingrich has ideas. Great ideas. Ideas that I would have come up with in the third grade (Right after my successful trip to the Hall of Presidents. Alone.). I mean, sending poor underachieving kids to become janitors is a great idea. I for one would personally send my third grade arch-nemesis Eddie to do this. That would teach him! Nothing makes you appreciate your education like being forced to clean up after your privileged peers. Also it’s got a cute factor, because teeny kids in big ol’ janitorial suits equals precious moments. Gingrich has ideas that aren’t even feasibly possible outside imagination. Let’s colonize the moon you guys! We can then send all the failed kindergarten janitors up there too if they can’t stick to their work. Two birds, one stone. Synergy. Economy. Freakonomics. Words that don’t actually mean anything.
What is most frightening about Gingrich’s potential as a candidate is his completely outdated attitude towards race. Using racially charged statements, like calling President Obama the “foodstamp president” Gingrich is only a step removed from Reagan’s demonization of “welfare queens.” And that scares me. With that attitude, he won in a state that according to the U.S. Census Bureau is 27 percent black. Who was voting? Who was clapping during his speeches? I can only hope it’s a Tea Party minority.
While elementary school tactics can seem appealing to the more base side of our nature, in practice they have devastating effects for those who are at the mercy of the more powerful.