Wednesday, May 20, 2009

"Militia Moll" is Latest GOP Electoral Sacrifice

Catherine Crabill will be the 99th District Republican candidate for Virginia's House of Delegates.  Never heard of her?  Hell, we'd never heard of the House of Delegates.  Turns out to be the 100-member lower house of their state legislature.  The 99th is in what's called the "Northern Neck," for those who know the Old Dominion's geography.

This otherwise obscure story is worth mentioning, though, because it illustrates our running hypothesis that Republican party has been reduced to a pack of mad dogs.  The story linked above describes, in spare but somewhat uninformative prose, a contest with the 99th District to keep Crabill off the ballot -- even though "Crabill [was] the only person who had pre-filed for the nomination and therefore the only person eligible for the nomination to run."

The story says that the minority objected to Crabill's "outspoken and assertive Christianity and states rights views." Now that's odd, isn't it?  we'd always heard that Christianity was pretty popular down South.  And "states' rights" is just Dixie slang for "Peculiar Institution and Segregation Forever."  We'd think that would be a winning combination, and not an especially unusual one.

But a little Googling gives a fuller sense of what Crabill actually stands for.  She insists that she has never been a member of a militia, and does not -- exactly -- believe that the US government planned and executed the Oklahoma City bombing.  (But see below.)  On the other hand, she doesn't make any secret of her feeling that the US government a tyrannical force oppressing its own citizens.  

On her own campaign website, she says,  "I am ... deeply committed to the Constitutional protection of our Tenth Amendment State Sovereignty as an over arching concern that I will promote and support throughout my campaign." Sadly, the Tenth Amendment has this season become a codeword for "right to secede from the Union," although the people using it all hasten to swear that they love the United States ... for now.

More worrisome, though, is another page of her site -- remember, this is her own official campaign website -- which features an open letter to her fellow 99th District voters.  In our line of work, we read the occasional crazy letter; it's a genre familiar to every parish pastor:  rambling, disjointed, poorly punctuated, and a strange combination of desperate sincerity and outright snideness, as though the writer believed that no reader was smart enough to appreciate her brilliant ideas, and yet desperate for somebody to help publicize them.  Paragraph breaks are few and far between, while capital letters are favored over italics.

Well, take a look at Crabill's.  Here's the part about Oklahoma City:

As far as the Bombing of the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City which happened during this season of other horrific events, I did and do believe that our government was culpable in the OKC bombing. This was not based on a “conspiracy theory” but on the analysis of Brigadier General Benton K. Partin (retired) who resides in Alexandria, Virginia who is an expert in weapons development. General Partin spent his own time and his own money personally visiting the site in OKC and publishing his analysis. From there he hand delivered a copy PERSONALLY to every single member of Congress. Congressman Trafficant was the only one willing to stand with him and call for a press conference to address it. The very next day Trafficant canceled and never spoke to the General again. ... I also don’t believe the official report of who shot JFK, does that scare you? 

So.  This is what the Republicans are up to these days.  God bless the dissident minority -- and God rest the soul of the GOP.

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