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  An Analysis of Jindalís Loss  


By: Gaurang Bhatt
November 17, 2003

Loss of Bobby Jindal in the Louisiana Governor`s race highlights some important aspects of America in general and the state in particular and the role of race and money in politics.

America has a Protestant as well as a female majority, a sizeable Catholic minority, roughly 15% Latino as well as African-American population, 3% Jewish population and 3% Muslim population. Chinese, Japanese and Asian Indians make up 1% or slightly more of the people. There has been only one American President who was Catholic and none a woman. The most exclusive club in the world is the US Senate of whose hundred members, women Jews or Catholic amount to ten plus or minus two each. There are no Latino or Black senators. Women who constitute nearly 55% have only 10% of the Senate seats. Catholics while greater than 25% of the population are 10% at best. Jews who are 3% of the population also hold about 10% of the seats. Other minorities are statistically insignificant for any valid analysis. The higher proportion of Jewish Senators has little to do with the better education or higher intelligence of the Jews, as most of the Jewish Senators are not at the right of the Bell curve of intelligence. It is due to their active participation in the public arena and powerful media and financial backing It is the disadvantage of race and sex that prevents the election of non-white Senators. The only non-whites come from Hawaii.

Large campaign chests enabling media saturation brings about electoral success in statewide elections. Blacks vote for Democrats as they supported civil rights and affirmative action. A swing to the right with Clinton onwards leaves African-Americans with no choice and captive to the lesser of two evils. Wealthy whites naturally vote Republican. The less well off and less educated whites also vote Republican as they have been brainwashed to believe Democrats are the party of the blacks and liberal whites. Ignorance and racism make them vote against their own economic interests. They are not however so blind as to vote for a Republican who is non-white or so chauvinistic as to prefer a non-white male to a white female. The taken for granted blacks may partially switch allegiance and vote Republican if the candidate is black, but less likely for an Indian. This may explain Jindal`s defeat in the race for governor. Race, money and chauvinism still play a major role in American politics which only the blind, deaf or dumb only can deny.

There is a twinge of regret in many Indian-Americans for his loss, but no reason to raise the cry of racism or buying of political office. After all we are guilty of parochialism, provincialism, sexism (aborted female fetuses), casteism, language based states and political parties and other evils. Why many of our matrimonial ads explicitly tout the fair complexion of the bride or the finances of the groom. Jindal is bright, honest and hardworking. It is natural for a young child in an alien environment to wish to gain acceptance of his peers and thus have misgivings about his foreign name and obscure birth religion. A change of both raise serious doubt about the maturity of his thinking or the guidance he received. His views on abortion and taint by association with the White House lacking compassion, charity or concern for the society`s have-nots and weak, illuminates him in their spotlight of Survival of the Richest. Perhaps maturity, experience and enlightenment and this setback will make him a better person and offer victory in the future. Amen! As he would say when he converts from Catholic to catholic.

Gaurang Bhatt

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