Both The Washington Post and The New Republic have something in common – Bobby Jindal just isn’t Indian enough. From WaPo yesterday:
As a child, he announced he wanted to go by the name Bobby, after a character in “The Brady Bunch.” He converted from Hinduism to Christianity as a teen and was later baptized a Catholic as a student at Brown University — making his devotion to Christianity a centerpiece of his public life. He and his wife were quick to say in a “60 Minutes” interview in 2009 that they do not observe many Indian traditions — although they had two wedding ceremonies, one Hindu and one Catholic. He said recently that he wants to be known simply as an American, not an Indian American.
“There’s not much Indian left in Bobby Jindal,” said Pearson Cross, a political science professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette who is writing a book on the governor.
And TNR re-upped this one on Twitter today, though the story itself was written in February.
The careers of D’Souza, Jindal, and Haley carry an implicit message: Racial minorities can advance in the GOP by erasing their ethnic identity and/or attacking other minorities.
These publications would have you believe that Republicans of color are basically tokens, that they cannot exist unless they assimilate into white culture. The reality of the situation is that for Jindal, Haley, Herman Cain, Ben Carson, and others, their politics are not defined by their race. Their message isn’t one of oppression due to skin tone, but one of equality through working to overcome. They, however, cannot be accepted as racial success stories because they do not allow themselves to be defined by their race. It is one of many threads that eaves together to form their character.
The Left would have you believe that the Republicans are the party of racism. It is the GOP that wishes to stifle racial equality and make the United States of America better for the white man. However, the reality of the situation is that, time and again, the Left preys upon those voters for whom race is the single issue. In their grand speeches on diversity, they really speak of division.
You don’t need me, a white, southern male, to tell you that hard work and self application gets you where you need to go in life, regardless of race. I am not a good spokesman for that. But all you need to do is see how these politicians, and others of varying skin tones, push themselves to become Oxford graduates, successful business people, charismatic leaders, neurosurgeons, etc. You may disagree with their politics, but you shamefully ignore their personal stories when you say they simply act white to get to where they are.
In Jindal’s case in particular, you can find dozens, if not hundreds, of articles online from Louisiana conservatives who adamantly oppose Jindal’s state agenda, and disagree on his records of success. But, the first card that gets played is the race card? Is it truly those that are right-of-center who are actively racist? Because I can look at left-leaning publications and see that you have to be “(enter race here) enough” to count.
UPDATE: After this was published, I was directly to the #Jindian hashtag on Twitter. Check out the racist jokes being made about Jindal.