Politics: A true "third" party?
The East Indians may be on to something that could clean up American politics. At least it might get rid of the sexual sleaze affecting the Oval Office. It seems there are over one million eunuchs living in India. Why so many, I do not know. But many of them are unhappy with the political corruption exhibited by India’s non-eunuch, mainstream politicians. (I am not making this up.)
Recently, in Delhi, hundreds of East Indian eunuchs held a party congress which they hailed as an “All-India Eunuch Meeting.” This meeting formalized a growing political movement in India that might, pardon the expression, become a “potent” political force.
Eunuch candidates have already stood for election in Madhya Pradesh and, Mr. Kamla Jaan, was elected the mayor of the town of Katni. Next Tuesday, Mr. Dhanno Bai, another eunuch, in the northern state of Haryana, is running for the state assembly.
In the Urdu language, eunuchs are called hijras or the “impotent ones.” (It is amazing what you can learn reading this column.) Eunuchs, however, may not be so impotent when it comes to political and civil-service reform.
Historically, eunuchs have a long and proud tradition of public service. In many Arab cultures, they were used as harem guards. But some of them got bored standing around all day looking at scantily-clad harem girls so, just to have more to do, they took on additional administrative duties around the palaces. Overtime, eunuchs were highly sought after as civil servants in Arab and Oriental countries. Evidently, they had nothing else on their minds but work. Unfortunately, this cannot be said for a number of U.S. government officials. One very high official comes to mind.
Indeed, it would be safe to say that untold numbers of private citizens have difficulties with government bureaucrats. And, truth be known, only the fear of the F.B.I. keeps some irate taxpayers from introducing any number of government bureaucrats into eunuch-hood. That urge is usually strongest around April 15th.
But how does one form a viable political party where being a eunuch is a requirement for party membership? It would seem to this observer that recruitment of new members would be a real challenge. Can you imagine one of those political party phone-bank callers interrupting your dinner hour with this?
“Hello, I’m a volunteer with the National Eunuchs United To Elect Reformers. You may have heard of us referred to by the acronym N.E.U.T.E.R. We are conducting a drive for new members. We want to clean up government corruption. You know, stop those messy and expensive sex scandals. We are hoping you would like to join our party.”
“Do you have any admission requirements?”
“Well, yes. You must be, say we shall, one of us; however, we can arrange that at no cost to you.”
In a way it is too bad that N.E.U.T.E.R will probably never be able to attract enough members to elect reformers to occupy the highest office in our land. Just think of all the terrible problems that might have been avoided if some of our recent Presidents had been members of N.E.U.T.E.R.
For example, if JFK had not been romancing the girlfriend of a Mafia boss who had connections to Castro, he might be alive today. If Bill Clinton had been a member of N.E.U.T.E.R., that would make it easier to understand why he wouldn’t go to Vietnam.
Even better, we would never have heard of Gennifer Flowers, Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey, Dolly Kyle Browning, Juanita Broddrick, Elizabeth Ward Gracen and, of course, Monica Lewinsky. Ken Starr would be a California law professor with a shot at sitting on the U.S. Supreme Court someday. Clinton wouldn’t have bombed thousands of innocent people in the Balkans. And, Arkansas State Troopers would be writing traffic tickets instead of writing “tell-all” books.
Yes, there is something to be said for N.E.U.T.E.R. But one suspects their national party convention would be pretty dull.
William Hamilton is a nationally syndicated columnist and featured commentator for USA Today.