I have a serious question for Kansas Republicans

One of your own, Representative Steve Alford, stood up to speechify against legalizing the marijuana. And this is what he literally and actually said:

What you really need to do is go back in the ’30s, when they outlawed all types of drugs in Kansas (and) across the United States, Alford said. What was the reason why they did that? One of the reasons why, I hate to say it, was that the African Americans, they were basically users and they basically responded the worst off to those drugs just because of their character makeup, their genetics and that.

Now I can understand why any Democrats in the audience would simply stand there gleefully, watching the ol’ bigot tie his tongue into a noose and hang himself from the rafters. It’s always good to see your opponent make an ass of himself.

What I don’t understand is why time didn’t slow down for shocked Republicans as they hurled themselves at the podium, shouting “NOOOOOOOOOO!” and taking Alford down at the knees? They’re just sitting there, blankly, like this is just standard ordinary run-of-the-mill routine.

The Democrats in Kansas, all 5 of them, are having a grand time tearing him up right now. What do you think the Republicans are doing? Sitting on their hands.

Alford could face discipline from House Republican leadership, but House Speaker Ron Ryckman said it was too early to tell what leaders would do. He said he and House Majority Leader Don Hineman would take the issue under review.

As always seems to be the case, Alford is shocked, shocked I tell you, at the rude people who have called him racist.

He come up and told me I’m a racist, Alford told The Topeka Capital-Journal. I’m about as far from being a racist as I could get.

He has sort of apologized, though.

Alford stood by his remarks without citing his source, but said he should not have singled out African-Americans.

There are certain groups of people, their genetics, the way their makeup is, the chemicals will affect them differently, Alford told the Telegram. That’s what I should have said was drugs affect people differently instead of being more specific.

You see, he should have just implied it — his mistake was actually specifying black people, when he should have just trusted that his audience of all-white Kansans would have known exactly what he was talking about, wink wink, nudge nudge.

But don’t you worry! The Kansas Republican party is “reviewing” the issue.


  1. jrkrideau says

    Are there some kind of screening exams for Republican candidates! Must have an IQ of 80 or lower and be able to spout racist claptrap at a moment’s notice?

    It is hard to believe it is random selection. Oh wait, I’ve got it. It is Putin!

  2. says

    Alford said, “I’m about as far from being a racist as I can get.”

    Accurate. He’s a racist, and he’s unable to not be a racist, so being a racist is about as far from being a racist as he can get, i.e. not at all far.

  3. tallgrass05 says

    Many Kansans would happily agree with any such racist statements. Trump has made overt racism acceptable again.

  4. thirdmill says

    You know, red state voters bitterly complain that the so-called coastal elites look down on them and view them as rubes and bumpkins living in Dogpatch. But then they confirm every negative stereotype about themselves by electing fuckwits like this (and of course Trump). If they don’t want to be thought of as rubes and bumpkins living in Dogpatch, maybe they could stop acting like it.

  5. chrislawson says

    SC — I won’t read anything by Hari after his plagiarism scandal (which I could forgive by itself, but not combined with (1) his inventing quotations in his reports to make them punchier, and (2) his pseudonymous Wikipedia edits to demonise his critics). Far from being a “rehabilitation”, as Hari has tried to spin this book, he is still practising dodgy journalism.

    Here’s a withering quote from the Guardian review:

    Hari describes DuPont, the first director of the US government’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, delivering “the knockout speech” of the Swedish event, “summing up a conference that warned that chemicals can hijack your brain and cause chemical slavery”. One hundred and seventy pages later, this oration is referenced in the book’s extensive notes. “Du Pont himself did not use the imagery of hijacking or chemical slavery in his speech, and does not like these metaphors,” Hari admits, “but they recurred at the conference many times.”

    Or how about this from New York Times?:

    The second half of “Chasing the Scream” is largely made up of Hari’s attempts to identify the causes of and most effective treatments for drug addiction. Unfortunately, his misunderstanding of some of the basic principles of scientific research — that anecdotes are not data; that a conclusion is not a fact — transforms what had been an affecting jeremiad into a partisan polemic.

    Hari acts as if a rigid, deterministic model of addiction as a purely physical disease is almost universally accepted; if anything, the opposite is true”

    Hari supports Marks’s claims by referring to “research published in the Proceedings of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh” but then buries in the notes the fact that it was Marks himself who was the author of that research.

    At one point, he quotes Alexander explaining that drug addicts don’t get clean because they would rather spend their time doing “exciting things like rob stores and hang around with hookers.”

    So, no thanks. There are plenty of other books against the War on Drugs from authors who understand basic scientific principles and who don’t have a penchant for misleading reportage.