Tag: Northam, Ralph S

Virginia’s First Lady Apologizes for Handing Cotton to Black Students on Tour

The tour guide handed raw, prickly cotton to some young black students who were part of a group visiting the oldest operating governor’s mansion in the country, one that was built with slave labor. She asked them to imagine what it would be like to be a slave picking the crop. What made the request […]

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‘He’s Not There Yet’: Embattled Governor Seeks Forgiveness From Black Virginians

RICHMOND, Va. — He prayed with black leaders, invoked his deep respect for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and insisted that the blackface he once wore was not indicative of the type of person he is today. He discussed increasing funding for at-risk youth programs and affordable housing, and scheduled the first of […]

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A Black Group Says Mardi Gras Blackface Honors Tradition. Others Call It ‘Disgusting.’

NEW ORLEANS — F. Brobson Lutz Jr. is one of those prominent Southern white men who once made a public appearance in blackface. It was at a big Mardi Gras parade years ago, and he knows there is photographic evidence. And yet Dr. Lutz, a 71-year-old internist, is not in the least bit worried about […]

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Governor Northam’s Troubling Silence on Racism

Gov. Ralph Northam of Virginia should resign. Not because he most likely wore blackface in the 1980s. He should resign because in 2019 he seems unwilling to address how, or whether, his views on race have evolved. His silence demonstrates a lack of integrity, and it’s disrespectful to one-fifth of Virginia’s electorate, the 87 percent […]

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Unmistakable Divide Among Women in Virginia Over Accusations Against Fairfax

RICHMOND, Va. — To Constance Cordovilla, the president of the Virginia National Organization for Women, the two sexual assault allegations against Lt. Gov. Justin E. Fairfax are not just grounds for him to resign — the detailed claims also demand that women side with his accusers. “It would set back survivors if we don’t because […]

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The Political Ascent of Justin Fairfax, and the Disturbing Allegations That Might End It

RICHMOND, Va. — One afternoon in the early 1990s, a middle-schooler showed up at Frank E. Emory Jr.’s law office in Charlotte, sent there by an aunt who knew Mr. Emory from church. The child, in town visiting relatives, wanted to hear about the law. He had plans. “He said, ‘I’m going to run for […]

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Virginia’s Economy Weathers the Storm in Its Statehouse

As politicians across the country demand a change in Virginia’s embattled leadership, business leaders are largely sticking to the sidelines. Leading Virginia business groups have stopped short of calling for the resignation of the state’s top three elected officials, all embroiled in personal scandals. Most corporate executives have avoided weighing in at all. And there […]

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The Conversation: The Bezos Story Is Big

Gail Collins: Bret, in honor of Valentine’s Day, I’m going to give you the gift of deciding what current event we should start off with. Virginia? Jeff Bezos? Trump investigations? Supreme Court? Rapidly exploding population of Democratic presidential candidates? Bret Stephens: Oh, Gail — that’s the most wonkishly romantic gesture I’ve ever heard. Maybe we […]

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Best of Late Night: Trevor Noah Says Northam’s ‘Racism Debt’ Might Be a Good Thing

Welcome to Best of Late Night, a rundown of the previous night’s highlights that lets you sleep — and lets us get paid to watch comedy. If you’re interested in hearing from The Times regularly about great TV, sign up for our Watching newsletter and get recommendations straight to your inbox. Northam’s ‘White Guilt’ Almost […]

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Will Power Trump Values in Virginia?

For over 50 years, the Democratic Party has carried the banner of racial and gender equality, and all the more so during the Trump era. In contrast to an increasingly dystopian Republican Party, Democrats from the left and the center have united behind an idealistic image of their party as a rainbow coalition of resistance […]

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For Virginia Governor Grappling With Race, a Childhood Trying to See Beyond It

ONANCOCK, Va. — When the United States Supreme Court ordered school districts in 1968 to dismantle their segregated classrooms, Wescott and Nancy Northam had a choice to make. As in much of the rest of the country, private schools had popped up in the Northams’ community on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. They were havens for white […]

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Ralph Northam, Virginia Governor, Insists He Is ‘Not Going Anywhere’

RICHMOND, Va. — After a week of revelations that have separately disgraced Virginia’s top three political leaders, the governor, Ralph Northam, remained firm on Sunday in his intention to stay in office and stopped short of calling for the resignations of his fellow scandal-plagued Democratic leaders. In an interview with “CBS This Morning,” Mr. Northam […]

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‘S.N.L.’ Mocks the Media’s Fixation on Jeff Bezos’ Private Photos

It started off as a serious discussion about Jeff Bezos’ accusation that The National Enquirer was engaging in extortion and blackmail by threatening to expose his private photos. But the discussion didn’t stay serious for long. In its opening sketch this week, “Saturday Night Live” presented a parody of “Meet the Press,” hosted by Chuck […]

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If Justin Fairfax Is Forced Out in Virginia, Who’s Next in Line?

Coalescing scandals have engulfed Virginia’s leaders, plunging the state into political free fall. First, Gov. Ralph Northam came under fire for a racist yearbook photo, which he acknowledged and then denied appearing in. He also admitted to wearing blackface to dress up as Michael Jackson in the 1980s. Then Lt. Gov. Justin E. Fairfax was […]

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It’s Great That We Celebrate Black History Month in Totally Normal Ways

Black History Month is the shortest month of the year. It’s usually only 28 days long! This gives stubborn people 337 days to pretend black history doesn’t exist, thanks to what’s commonly known as the one-twelfths compromise. Black History Month always felt like an obligatory celebration. But this year people are really leaning in. Take […]

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Virginia’s Racist History Clashes With New South Image

RICHMOND, Va. — L. Douglas Wilder, a grandson of slaves, became America’s first elected black governor 30 years ago, winning in Virginia in part by finessing the racist history of the state that is now roiling its politics once more. To succeed as a black candidate in 1989, Mr. Wilder had to patiently accommodate the […]

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Virginia Is in Turmoil. Here’s a Breakdown of Seven Days of Scandal.

For Virginia’s top state officials, it was a week of chaos. There was an apology, a reversal and an admission about blackface. A sexual assault allegation was made, and an emphatic denial was made in response. Then came another admission about blackface. Last week, the clouds began to gather over Gov. Ralph S. Northam, 59, […]

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When Is Sorry Not Enough? Virginia Scandals Test the Limits of Forgiveness

They are very, very sorry, they tell their constituents, lips pursed, eyes downcast, forehead flop sweat glistening in front of the television cameras as they try to explain their transgressions. Implicit in their words of remorse is a question: Will you forgive me? That wearying American political ritual repeated itself once again during a circuslike […]

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