Sex and Silliness in South Carolina

Political nuttiness is nothing new in South Carolina:  In 1858, US Congressman Preston Brooks  “caned” abolitionist US Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts, crippling him for life; when South Carolina seceded from the Union in 1860, James L. Petigru famously remarked, “South Carolina is too small for a republic and too large for an insane asylum”; Strom Thurmond impregnated his family’s 15 year old black maid and sent his daughter up north to hide her away;  in 2009, Congressman Joe Wilson shouted, “you lie” at President Obama who was addressing a joint session of the US Congress; and in 2009, Governor Mark Sanford told us he was hiking the Appalachian Trail while he was in Argentina shacking up with his “soul mate”.

Sex and silliness, mystery and meanness, South Carolina politics is a never-ending mess.

Tom Turnipseed is an attorney, writer and peace activist in Columbia, SC. His blog is at

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