The Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA) has announced that it rejected a contribution from the state’s lieutenant governor, Justin Fairfax, and his PAC, to purchase a table at the organization’s forthcoming Blue Commonwealth Gala in June. Ostensibly, the reason is related to two unproven charges against him, alleging sexual misconduct. The events involving Fairfax broke into the news shortly after the governor and attorney general of the Commonwealth acknowledged that they wore blackface while in college.
Fairfax has adamantly denied the charges against him, and has reported that a lie detector supports his denials. Governor Northam, for his part, pledged to engage in a process of reconciliation. Recently, the Governor canceled several commencement appearances due to threatened protests. Attorney General Herring has been mostly mute.
While the DPVA proudly proclaims on its website that it is an Equal Opportunity Employer, it appears it may not be an equal opportunity host for political events if Ralph Northam and Mark Herring contribute and attend. The event features Mayor Pete Buttigieg as a confirmed speaker. Some folks may be aware that Mayor Pete is moderately plagued at home in South Bend, Indiana, for the firing of an African American police chief under, as yet, inadequately explained circumstances.
There is no direct inference one can draw from the fact that the chair of DPVA is a woman. But would the contributions and attendance of Northam, Herring, and Buttigieg occur were the chair to be African American? Male or female? In effect, the DPVA has engaged in the political shaming of a statewide, elected Democrat without mentioning others with equally questionable historical antecedents. Whatever one’s sympathy or adherence to the #MeToo movement, it cannot be said to be more offensive than racial stereotyping. In this instance, DPVA needs to examine its values. Being “perfekt” is simply not a human quality.