Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Monday, December 18, 2006

S. R. Siddarth is Salon.com's Person of the Year

Hat tip to angryasianman. So much cooler than TIME magazine's declaration that "You" are person of the year. It's a nice recap of everything that went down when and after SR Sidarth, a college senior at University of Virginia, shot video footage of former (love that word!) Virginian Senator George Felix Allen doing a routine campaign stop. The existence of the video was leaked to the Washington Post and then available on Youtube for everyone to watch Allen's scornful countenance deriding a mere student. It spurred regular citizens to become activists and agents for change. It spurred Asian Americans to step up and create change.

The conclusion is beautiful and tells the hopeful lesson of the Macaca moment:

"But the same voters may also have recognized Sidarth, born and raised in northern Virginia, a straight-A student at a state college and a member of the local Hindu temple, as their neighbor. Allen was just a California transplant with dip and cowboy boots who had glommed on to the ancient racial quirks of his adopted home. Sidarth was the kid next door. He, not Allen, was the real Virginian. He was proof that every hour his native commonwealth drifts further from the orbit of the GOP's solid South and toward a day when Allen's act will be a tacky antique. Allen was the past, Sidarth is the wired, diverse future -- of Virginia, the political process and the country."

I think that SR Sidarth's story is my favorite individual story from the political campaigns of 2006 (not counting Dems taking back the House and Senate) because of how one person was able to spur such a dramatic change. I hail you, my Macaca-ini-Chief! More thoughts later - my fingers are numb from typing and the cold.


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