UPDATED: "Moderate" Bob McDonnell & all statewide candidates should condemn this filth

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Every once in a while, the vile underbelly of hate and bigotry rears its head in unexpected places in politics, as in life. The recent threats and disgusting hate speech used in an anonymous blog against Lieutenant Governor candidate Pat Edmonson is heinous on an order of magnitude we haven't seen expressed so openly in a long time. The following excerpt from the inaugural post on the lovely and inspiring (please note the sarcasm) web site, aptly named STOP PAT EDMONSON.

A WORLD WHERE THE SERPENT TONGUED EVIL SLUT DOES NOT SLITHER AROUND SAVING GAYS AND NEGROES. ALL PEOPLE SHOULDN'T BE FREE. SOME SHOULD BE SENT OFF TO AN ISLAND SOME WHERE. PAT EDMONSON IS WHY GOD WARNED ADAM ABOUT EVE. UNDER MY RIGHTS AS A FREE PERSON, I CALL ON ALL PEOPLE TO PROVIDE INFORMATION ON PAT EDMONSON THAT I CAN PRINT HERE TO SHARE THE TRUTH WITH ALL VIRGINIA. WE NEED DO THIS. ALL VIRGINIA NEED TO BE SAVED. SHE MUST BE STOPPED. WE DO NO ALREADY THAT SHE DOES NOT LIKE OUR OLD PRESIDENT AND THAT SHE WILL TURN YOUR GIRLS INTO HOOKERS AND YOUR BOYS INTO QUEERS.

I normally would never post something so ugly and inappropriate into a blog post of mine. However, this kind of filth, its existence in Virginia politics (and supposedly Democratic politics--an accusation of which I'm not convinced yet) needs to be noted by all political activists on both sides of the aisle. I don't know if this is intended to be a joke or not, but this language and this level of bigotry is neither funny nor acceptable in our political discourse.

As a gay Virginian, I am bothered by this turn of events. It reminds me that Virginia legislators have failed to act in ways appropriate to the positions of the electorate today, including 90% of voters supporting anti-discrimination protections, including 80+% of Republicans. The failure to act or even allow serious deliberation on an issue of such extraordinary consensus demonstrates where the hearts and minds of some legislators rest on some matters that are related to this type of hate speech: tacit endorsement.

I call on all statewide Virginia political candidates, particularly the supposedly newfound "moderate" Bob McDonnell, to immediately and loudly condemn this outrageous speech. This should also extend to the Republican candidates for Lt. Gov. and Attorney General. People involved in politics, particularly our state level legislators, need to be reminded occasionally of the filthy and disgusting minds that are out there, that inevitably attack gay people's humanity, as well as in this case, women and African-Americans. Hey, that's more than half the electorate right there!

This is terribly important because America, and particularly Virginia, still have a long way to go to reach the level of understanding that Martin Luther King, Jr. imagined in his infamous I Have A Dream speech. Legislators need to be educated that GLBT people continue to be subjected to such attitudes in our daily lives, even here in Northern Virginia. Until our state government is willing to codify that discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is unlawful, when 90% of Virginia voters support that, they are falling down on the job. Period.

The fact that Pat Edmonson is using this issue to take a swipe at Jody Wagner I find unfortunate. This is a much larger issue than a campaign. Fairness and justice in our society go to the root of why many people are involved in our democratic processes, something that I'm sure includes Ms. Edmonson. So, I am uncertain why she's opted to use this opportunity to take a swipe at Jody Wagner. For the record, not only am I a gay Virginian, but I'm also a Jody Wagner supporter. But regardless of who I would be supporting in the race, I don't for a second believe that Jody Wagner nor those people who are actively supporting her would behave in this way. If there is any truth to such accusations, it is my hope that any law enforcement agencies involved will fully investigate and disclose the perpetrator(s) so they may never show their shameful faces in Virginia Democratic politics again (or Republican politics although I fear they would not be shunned appropriately).

Until that time, both Pat Edmonson's and Jody Wagner's statements, both already covered in Joel McDonald's diary, have adequately demonstrated that they reject and abhor such hateful language and call on whoever is responsible to stop.

But, will Bob McDonnell, supposed "moderate"?

UPDATES:

Lowell has statements up from all the other Democratic candidates for Lieutenant Governor here. This is good progress, and I'd still like to see the candidates for Governor and Attorney General decry this level of hate speech.

Vivian Paige, who deserves a lot of credit for jumping on this story early, also brings the latest news that Pat Edmonson has filed suit against the anonymous perpetrator.

This Is It: a Call To Take a Stand

...that not one candidate who believes in the principles this nation was founded upon should shrink from. This goes beyond mean to hateful and incitive.

Indeed

Thanks Dan. And I know a lot of statewide candidates on both sides will look at this request and immediately not want to get involved, and not issue any statement. That is their right, but our community (as well as women and African-Americans) deserve to know that the people they might vote to run their government do not agree with such vile hatred and bigotry.

For the good of this commonwealth, those campaigns that really do value the inherent worth and dignity of every human being should condemn this blog and this speech. As a gay citizen and Virginian, I sure would appreciate it!

Doug, you are absolutely....

... correct that this goes beyond a campaign. People should be able to live their lives without having to worry about their own personal safety being threatened by others who are promoting hate. We need our elected officials to stand up for basic decency. A very very dear friend of mine was recently physically attacked simply because she was holding hands with her girlfriend in public while out for a walk in downtown dc. This is unacceptable and we need leaders who will stand up against this type of action.

You call this a Democratic blog

Dear heaven, I hope not. Actually, it sounds more like the KKK or skinhead Aryan Nation. Isn't Virginia Beach (I ask forgiveness from most residents thereof) home to some of the more extreme right-wing elements? Does the Southern Poverty Law Center have this blog in its sights? It's typical, unfortunately, of a lot of the off-the-charts nazi-linked, KKK-linked nut cases you find not just in the Old South but in parts of, say, Idaho and Arizona. Aside from its incoherence, it is seriously deranged and frightening... but I'll bet its not the only load of crap online during this election, so I don't know if every politician will want to start denouncing everything that comes along. Why highlight it with the free publicity, regardless of how disgusting it is, and worthy of being denounced.

Teddy nailed it

Since that blog is anonymous, why should we believe its author even if he or she claims to be for Jody Wagner or claims to be a Democrat? The tone and writing on the blog is very atypical of anything a Democrat would say. This person could be doing a twofer - trying to take down two Democratic candidates for the price of one.

What I mean is that while they are slandering Pat Edmondsen, they are claiming to be doing it for Jody Wagner. But aren't they also hurting Jody's campaign? After all, would any candidate really want to be associated with such hate speech? I'm sure Jody Wagner, and every other Democrat, is deeply embarrassed by all this. We're not talking about a whisper campaign here but somebody very publicly spewing hate speech, ostensibly to support Wagner. But with friends like that on your side, you hardly need enemies.

I don't buy it at all. Further, if you look at the choice of words, the metaphor about serpents, the obsession with sex and "whores" and "sluts", etc, what you have is some very "Bible" influenced literalist fringe group member, probably KKK or Aryan nation related indeed (this isn't even mainstream evangelical Christian but really extremist). And yes, Virginia Beach is, unfortunately, home to some of those extreme elements.

That's why I don't believe for one minute that the person running that blog is really a Democrat, or even a mainstream Republican.

Just wanted to add, it could also simply be somebody seriously unhinged and mentally ill with no political affiliation. It sounds like somebody very unstable.

The author needs help

I mean, professional help, now that I think about it. Here is a red flag, a warning sign which should not be ignored, just as we have had warning signs in the past from mass murderers (like those deranged individuals who end up shooting fellow-students at school, or disgruntled fired employees who return to wipe out their former boss and fellow workers). Seriously, is there no way for society to intervene and protect itself? Free speech, religious freedom, and all that, this is creepy. Forewarned is forearmed.