Thursday, June 25, 2015


The Federalist's Ben Domenech is very upset because of the naked contempt epressed toward Bobby Jindal by The Washington Post:
Jindal presents a challenging figure to the media in a number of respects, particularly those used to depicting Republicans as uneducated dummies. He has an Ivy League resume unmatched in the field -- a Rhodes Scholar who was accepted into Harvard Medical and Yale Law but chose Oxford instead, appointed secretary of the Louisiana Health system at 24, president of the University system at 28. He’s got a brain, and a child of immigrants story to go with it.

So you ask how to write about Jindal? I give you The Washington Post’s India bureau chief:
“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.”
... Imagine the WaPo or any other newspaper publishing a piece taking exactly this line of attack on the Castro brothers. Imagine a white journalist quoting a white professor criticizing the Castro brothers as being insufficiently Hispanic -- “my goodness, they don’t even speak Spanish!” -- and think how that would play in media circles.
Well, in fact, the Post has noted that Julian Castro, often mentioned as a possible Democratic VP candidate in 2016, and his brother Joaquin don't speak Spanish -- in fact, the Post mentioned that three times just last month.

But with regard to Jindal, why bring up all this stuff? The Brady Bunch, the religious conversion, the rejection of hyphenated labels for Americans?

Um, maybe because Jindal's own campaign material stresses all this.

In the Post story, we read, "As a child, he announced he wanted to go by the name Bobby, after a character in 'The Brady Bunch.'" Now let's go to "Seven Things You Didn't Know About Bobby," on Jindal's campaign site. Here's #2:
Call me Bobby:
Growing up, Governor Jindal loved The Brady Bunch. Everyday after school he would watch, and instantly identified the youngest Brady boy, Bobby. As a 4 year old, the Governor decided to rename himself after his favorite TV character. One day his teacher told his mother, ‘Well, your son has got a new name.’ His self-imposed nickname stuck and he has been Bobby Jindal ever since.
The coversion story cited in the Post? Here's "Seven Things You Didn't Know About Bobby," item #5, on Jindal's site:
Father Jindal:
Bobby was raised Hindu, and converted to Christianity in high school. When he received a personalized Bible as a birthday present he dismissed it as a boring gift that he couldn’t even re-gift. Friends grew tired of trying to convert him, but they didn’t give up. Throughout high school, Bobby wrestled with the Lord and the work that He was doing in his life. He dug out his Bible and read it cover to cover. In high school, while watching a grainy film about the Crucifixion of Jesus, Bobby surrendered his life to Christ and has never looked back.
And this line in the Post -- "He said recently that he wants to be known simply as an American, not an Indian American"? Well, here's a tweet Jindal sent last night:

How dare The Washingon Post echo Jindal's own PR! Racist! Racist!


Victor said...

Nobody is questioning Booby J's intelligence.
It's his judgment that needs scrutiny.

He decided to sell out to Conservatism, because his avenue for success was greater there.
If he was a Democrat, he'd just be another non-white face in the crowd.
But, as a Republican, he could be a star because they need to have some non-white people on their stage, so that they don't look like a party of old white men, a handful of women, and a base full of white racist, and/or misogynistic, and/or xenophobic, and/or homophobic, and/or intolerant "Christian" zealots.

Aunt Snow said...

Poor Box Turtle Ben, looking for grievances everywhere.

Roger said...

I was trying to figure out why Domenech thought the WaPo was criticizing Jindal. I haven't read the whole piece (and am not going to), but this excerpt sounds like the usual puff piece indicating they'll endorse him as soon as he wins the nomination.

Unknown said...

Roger, the reason rhymes with the second syllable in "excerpt".

It's not what's true or logical or rational or reasonable or sensible or any of that supposedly Good (So Presumptively Libtard) Stuff: it's about turning up the volume on the rebuttal to the relative 11, running it so long and apparently ubiquitously it becomes the New It.

WaPo isn't hedging on endorsing him 'in case': WaPo knows full well that in his case, there's no 'in case' to hedge. It's professional crocodilian courtesy, aimed at feeding the illusion that to whomdoever shall in battle defeat Brave Sir Bobby, also shall he - definitely 'he' - then be credited with all baubles, epaulets and assorted campaigns honors populating Brave Sir Bobby's tailored tunic, as like with any establishment cannibal eating his victim's spirit along with the sweetmeats.

LittlePig said...

I do believe the name of Mr. Jindal's deity is Mammon.

BKT said...

Bobby can aspire to a society where we all identify simply as "Americans" instead of defining ourselves by ethnic heritage if he wants, but I'm still going to call him what he is: a Grifter-American.

Roger said...

Ben, of all people, should appreciate the recycling of Jindal's material in the Washington Post. Perhaps his beef is that it isn't copied word-for-word.