Saturday, February 25, 2012

Republican Racism Example #28: Carl Palidino And His Perverse And Hateful Videos

In spite of all their appalling political success, it often appeared that in 2010 the Tea Party Republicans had recruited their candidates from the cast of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest.  The GOP field of medalists in the Gonzo Olympics included Christine O’Donnell, the unsuccessful Republican Senate nominee in Delaware (who once admitted on Bill Maher’s show Politically Incorrect  to having “dabbled” in witchcraft) and Rich Iott, the failed Republican Congressional candidate in Ohio who turned out to have spent weekends dressing in a Nazi SS uniform reenacting the adventures of a German division that took part in the Holocaust.  (See my earlier post, “Republican Racism Example #26: The Pretend Nazi and the Pretend Plumber.”)  The gold medalist of weird, however, may have been the Republican gubernatorial nominee in New York, Carl Paladino, who had a bad habit of sending racist emails and bestiality videos to his friends.

Carl  Palidino: the creepy sex videos and the racist jokes he sent in emails to friends didn't bother his Tea Party followers. (Photo from the CBS News website at

A millionaire real estate developer, Paladino “gifted” his email buddies over the years leading up to the 2010 election with a video of a woman having sex with a horse and one headlined “Miss France 2008 Fucking.”   Relevant to this blog, Paldino was not just pathologically strange, but also a crude bigot.  The Republican, who defeated the establishment-backed Rick Lazio in the GOP primary, also forwarded a picture of a airplane landing near a black man with the caption, “Holy Shit, run niggers, run.” 

Another email contained a photo-shopped picture of President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama dressed as a pimp and prostitute.

This is one variation of the demeaning "Barack-and-Michelle-Obama-as-pimp-and-hooker" images that were circulated by Republicans like Carl Palidino.  (Image from

A video sent by Palidino showed members of an African tribe dancing with the description, “Obama Inauguration Rehearsal.”   He also defended a friend who characterized New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a Jew, as an “Antichrist.”  (For more, see the CBS news site at

Palidino insisting he was just showing a politically incorrect sense of humor and proudly described himself as being blunt.  Those fine Christians in the Tea Party didn’t mind Palidino’s weird sex videos, f-bombs, n-words, or his obvious racism and  condescension towards the president of the United States.  They didn’t even seem rattled by the revelation of the existence of a Palidino love child.  Their hero called for slashing the state budget, reducing taxes,  toughening sentences for prisoners and teaching them “personal hygiene,” and bashed gays, and that was enough for the Teabaggers. 

But establishment Republicans and the rest of New Yorkers concluded that the GOP nominee was a hate-filled creepy old man.    Paladino won a mere 34 of the vote against Democratic nominee Andrew Cuomo in what was generally a bad election year for the Democrats.  His support came mainly from the very conservative counties surrounding his native Buffalo.  In a bizarre concession speech, Paladino channeled Robert DeNiro from the movie The Untouchables, wielding a baseball bat.  (In the movie, DeNiro plays Al Capone.  He carries around a baseball bat during a dinner with his mob lieutenants and clubs to death an underling who failed to keep a bootleg liquor warehouse concealed from Chicago police.) 

Paladino, with the bat perched on his shoulder, announced to Cuomo, “As our next governor, you can grab this handle and bring the people with you to Albany.  Or you can leave it untouched and run the risk of having it wielded against you. Because make no mistake, you have not heard the last of Carl Paladino."  (See

In a normal year, Palidino would have been an exotic sideshow. But there have been no normal years for the Republican Party during the Obama administration.

Sadly, he had peers on the GOP ticket who were almost as racist and unstrung.

Michael Phillips has authored the following:

White Metropolis: Race, Ethnicity and Religion in Dallas, Texas, 1841-2001 (Austin:  University of Texas Press, 2006)

(with Patrick L. Cox) The House Will Come to Order: How the Texas Speaker Became a Power in State and National Politics. (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2010)

“Why Is Big Tex Still a White Cowboy? Race, Gender, and the ‘Other Texans’” in Walter Buenger and Arnoldo de León, eds., Beyond Texas Through Time: Breaking Away From Past Interpretations (College Station: Texas A&M Press, 2011)

“The Current is Stronger’: Images of Racial Oppression and Resistance in North Texas Black Art During the 1920s and 1930s ”  in Bruce A. Glasrud and Cary D. Wintz, eds., The Harlem Renaissance in the West: The New Negroes’ Western Experience (New York: Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, 2011)

“Dallas, 1989-2011,” in Richardson Dilworth, ed. Cities in American Political History (Washington, D.C.: CQ Press, 2011)

(With John Anthony Moretta, Keith J. Volonto, Austin Allen, Doug Cantrell and Norwood Andrews), Keith J. Volonto and Michael Phillips. eds., The American Challenge: A New History of the United States, Volume I.   (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2012).

(With John Anthony Moretta and Keith J. Volanto), Keith J. Volonto and Michael Phillips, eds., The American Challenge: A New History of the United States, Volume II. (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2012).

(With John Anthony Moretta and Carl J. Luna), Imperial Presidents: The Rise of Executive Power from Roosevelt to Obama  (Wheaton, Il.: Abigail Press, 2013). 

“Texan by Color: The Racialization of the Lone Star State,” in David Cullen and Kyle Wilkison, eds., The Radical Origins of the Texas Right (College Station: University of Texas Press, 2013).

He is currently collaborating, with longtime journalist Betsy Friauf, on a history of African American culture, politics and black intellectuals in the Lone Star State called God Carved in Night: Black Intellectuals in Texas and the World They Made.

1 comment:

  1. Just so you know, pretty much everything you said was wrong, but I always didn't read all that BS..
    Democrats are the real racist And always have been. People know that now. You know, Senator Byrd and the KKK. Democrats were always out voted when it came to civil rights. Please stop posting lies. Oh yeah the first birther was really Hillary Clinton....