BROWN HANDS. This ad is being run in the 13th Congressional District of North Carolina by the Republican candidate, a true whackadoo named Vernon Robinson. Please read the text as quoted carefully. It is almost word-for-word the text of the famous "black hands" ad that Jesse Helms threw up at the last minute against Harvey Gantt in their bloody 1990 senatorial campaign. Apparently, there's a template for bigots in which you just fill in the name of the Other du jour. A hundred years ago, they'd have been talking about my grandmother.

--Charles P. Pierce

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