It is an issue well worth focusing on this fall leading into a very important election. It is the “Trump factor.” As our original, homegrown weekly national affairs column reports elsewhere in this issue following Tuesday night’s Virginia gubernatorial debate, “Youngkin Exposed as a Bonafide Trumper.” The decisive and damning evidence from the debate is presented there.
Virginians need to appreciate just what a Trump (that is, Youngkin) victory in their state this fall would mean. It would reverse the trend of statewide Democratic victories of the past two decades here that have gradually wiped away the age-old remnants of pro-Confederate Jim Crow laws here dating back to the Civil War. The modern centerpiece of that reactionary trend is reflected in downright sexist, male supremacist anti-women laws, some two dozen of which Terry McAuliffe had to veto as governor during his first (2014-2018) term.
Finally, at long last, Virginians moved into the 21st century in 2020 when Biden won a decisive victory that was accompanied by sufficient wins at the state level to give Democrats the heft needed to cast out racist, male supremacist majorities in the House of Delegates and Senate to put the state on the right track for sustainable human rights advances and business growth. As McAuliffe has pointed out, being pro-human rights in Virginia is an essential precondition for major corporations to grow their companies here. They simply will not choose to locate in a backward culture any longer.
Virginians can be truly proud of the gains that have been made here on human rights and equality issues in the last decade, in the years since the reprehensible Marshall-Newman Amendment prohibiting same-sex contracts was enshrined in the state constitution in 2006. That prohibition is still there, but nullified by federal law and the sentiments of a succession of Democratic state leaders since. The election of Youngkin would guarantee that the legalization of prejudice will be restored in Virginia, and while there may still be some who would be happy to see that, it would not reflect the views of the substantial majority.
This fall, divisiveness has been on the rampage in local elections, including those in our very midst. In little Falls Church with its highly-educated and activist population, appeals to the kind of hatred that have manifested in Fairfax and Loudoun County school board races have yet to rear their heads. So far.
The races here, though, are not without this influence, in particular in the case of a high level operative in the powerful rightwing D.C. think tank, the Cato Institute, running for school board.
We are sounding the alarm that such efforts are part of a nationwide Trump strategy going forward.
So, in Falls Church, sorry friends, there are simply no ‘local’ races. Our best assessments of the candidates who will least taint our schools with Trumpian influences are David Ortiz, Lori Silverman, Kathleen Tysse, Jerrod Anderson and Tate Gould.