Mark Kirk was recently secretly recorded talking about watching out for possible voter fraud in Chicago and Rockford on November 2nd. Like it or not, it is a valid argument considering Illinois' interesting voting past. The terms "vote early and vote often" and "the dead vote" didn't come into everyday parlance from out of the blue. Just off hand, will the secret recorder be prosecuted considering in Illinois, both parties must consent to being recorded?
There is nothing wrong about being diligent and having poll watchers - members of either party watchdogging the election judges - at polling places. I've done poll watching in the past, not because I suspected voter fraud in my district and in fact, my election judges are some of the nicest people and are well trained by our County Clerk. I did poll watching to keep track of who has voted and who hasn't and then I used that information to make some last minute phone calls to remind people to vote before the polls close.
When Mark Kirk's secret recording came out, the media, Democrats and others started to cry foul, not only because of allegations of possible voter fraud, but because in discussing poll watching Mark Kirk said:
"These are lawyers and other people that will be deployed in key, vulnerable precincts, for example, South and West sides of Chicago, Rockford Metro East...where the other side might be tempted to jigger the numbers somewhat."
The Democrats and others are really upset that Kirk used the word "jigger" because as the Rev. Albert Tyson of St. Stephen's AME Church explained,
"The problem I have is that it sounds so much like another word".
Now I don't have to explain to you what word the good Reverend is referring to, but the overreaction of Democrats, et. al, smacks of another desperate move to on behalf of the Giannoulias campaign to make a dent in Mark Kirk's slight lead in the polls. So using the good Reverend's logic, that means other words that we cannot say anymore because they "sound so much like another [racial] word" would be "Like", "Bigger", "Sap", "Sink", "Mop" and other similar sounding words. Ridiculous. Political correctness has gone absolutely crazy.
It gets better. 6th Ward Alderman Freddrenna Lyle, trying to tie Kirk's use of the word "jigger" to something more sinister said,
"He said what he meant. He may not have meant to say it in that manner, but he said it and it's, it's offensive".
Before the Alderman gets too bent out of shape, maybe we all should examine another use of a word that "sounds so much like another word".
Back in 1999, then Washington DC Mayor Anthony A. Williams fired a staff member for using the word "niggardly" while discussing the budget. Sure sounds like something else, but even as the Washington Post points out, the word "niggardly" means miserly. The staff member was promptly fired, but then rehired. Why? Overreaction of a word sounding too much like something else. Even the leftists agreed with the rehiring and said that the firing of the staff member was an overreaction,
"It's to the mayor's credit that he offered to reinstate him," said Philip Pannell, a gay activist. "I think it's very big of him and prudent. I hope this is a situation where everyone at large, as a community, learned from this."
Joslyn N. Williams, president of the Metropolitan Washington Council of the AFL-CIO, commended the mayor for being "forthright and brave enough to admit he's made a mistake and to seek to correct it." He said two basic questions need to be asked: What was learned from this situation, and how will Williams make sure it doesn't happen again? "One hopes that this administration doesn't have a tendency to be termination-happy whenever there's a problem," he said. "Creative management means that you counsel people, warn them and deal with the problem. You do not solve the problem by putting them out on the street."NAACP Chairman Julian Bond, who in criticizing Williams last week said that people should not have to "censor" their language to meet other "people's lack of understanding," praised Howard's reinstatement. "I'm happy to learn that this episode has come to some happy conclusion and that the citizens and the government of the District of Columbia can get back to talking about real issues," he said.
Just another instance of overreacting at the fear of offending the Political Correctness Police. Likewise, Kirk's statement is also being shoved to the forefront by the same Political Correctness Police on behalf of Alexi Giannoulias. It's no secret here in Illinois or elsewhere that this Illinois Senate race has been absolutely brutal, but to stoop to the level of playing the race card, Alexi Giannoulias, Democrats, and others should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. They can't fight Kirk on the issues, so they have to bring up a false controversy. I can't wait for this election cycle to be over and we can regain some sort of sanity in our media, our state, our country, and our lives.
Shame on the political left and Giannoulias for playing gutter politics. Where is Giannoulias rushing in to defend his opponent against this overreaction? It seems it would be a great opportunity for Giannoulias to bring some civility back into the Senate race. But no, instead, Giannoulias is trying to make political hay out of Kirk's statement and has even posted links to several sites discussing Kirk's statement - but no attempt by Giannoulias to distance himself. Click here to see the Chicago ABC 7 Newscast.
Crossposted at Downstate Illinois Advocate