ALLEN: ENSLAVING PEOPLE IS BAD. George Allen says he's sorry about the whole slavery thing in a Washington Post article that mentions Ryan Lizza's look at his curious racial past. The Post article, though, is unclear on the really noteworthy part of Lizza's story, which is that Allen isn't some white Southern politician who used to be a racist and isn't anymore. Allen's not from the South and neither is his family. He picked up his Stars and Bars loving ways growing up in California. When he was in college, his dad got hired to coach the Redskins and moved to Virginia (though presumably to the not-so-southern part of Virginia that's near DC where the 'skins play) and transferred to UVA.

Allen's interest in developing deep thoughts on the South's racial history seems to be part and parcel of the same eccentric posturing as his original enthusiasm for the Confederate flag. The reality is that non-Southerners who moved to Northern Virginia to work in the Washington, D.C., area are extremely common and they're just, you know, not Southerners. Even their kids don't usually think of themselves as Southern. They don't fly Confederate flags and they don't apologize for the Confederate past; it has nothing to do with them.

--Matthew Yglesias

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