Gagflex: Fire the Racists

Tennessee politics is embarrassing. In my last column I wrote about the idiotic bill that passed in the senate recently that allows citizens to carry firearms into establishments that serve alcohol. Republican Rep. Curry Todd of Collierville spearheaded that little flash of genius. It’s not too often that Tennessee politics winds up in the national news, but when it does it’s usually a belly flop that embarrasses any half-thinking citizen of the state. Whether its ex-senator Bill Frist giving his medical opinion regarding the severely brain damaged Terri Schiavo after watching a 5-year-old video, or Fred Thompson just generally being Fred Thompson, Tennessee’s political representation has proved the verdict of the Scopes trial correct. There is no evolution in Tennessee.

The recent national shame to the state is a person called Sherri Goforth. Goforth is a GOP staffer for state Sen. Diane Black. She also happens to be racist idiot. Somehow Goforth accidentally e-mailed a racist joke to other staff members depicting President Obama as a set of white eyes on a black background. Goforth stated that it was accidental because she hit the wrong button, and it was just something she put out there and couldn’t take back. It’s like when her Klan hat gets ripped off by a low hanging ceiling fan in front of black friends revealing her to be the idiot she is; there’s no coming back from that.

She didn’t say it was an accident because she had a racist picture tucked away on her work computer. It was an accident because she hit the wrong button? Not only should she be fired for being a bigot, she should be fired for being totally incompetent while handling a computer. Democrats and Republicans alike have come out stating that she should be fired. Republican Strategist, Ron Christie, stated that Goforth should be looking for a new job because she’s a poor reflection of the office of state senate. Sen. Black on the other said that she “does not tolerate these kinds of communications coming from this office.” And she went so far as to give Goforth a verbal reprimand and a write-up that will go into her folder. Seriously, I’m not making that up. She gets to keep her $50,000 a year job with a write-up.

What professional firm in American would let you keep your job for sending out something like that? One would think having a racist with influence on the job might make for a hostile work environment. But what does she have to worry about? It’s apparently all part of the good ole’ boy way of thinking that has corroded local politics in the South since long before any of us were born and it needs to die. You could draw up a long list of politicians in the state who do what they can to drag Tennessee back to the Stone Age. Whether it’s gun control, civil rights or stem cell research, our politicians have had tendencies to side with less progressive views on major issues. If Sen. Black truly represents us then she should fire Goforth, if for nothing more than to oust an idiot and to help Tennessee take a baby step into the future.


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