PHILADELPHIA--Saying he was "way out of his solar quadrant" in declaring that Sen. Barack Obama's slim, goofy-guy personae has benefited him in attracting the geek vote, leading geeks were united in their scorn for former President Bill Clinton's comment during a campaign stop in support of his wife, Sen. Hillary Clinton and her Democratic nomination bid.
Clinton's remark, made before a steelworkers union in Allentown yesterday, was: "All I'm saying is that he sure is lucky he was born a geeky, funny-looking character because he's sure got the Trekkie-vote sewn up but good."
"That's not even phasers on stun anymore," declared Sidney R. Khozhang, editor of Mac World. "Just singling us out as some political force in this way - while it does seem kind of exciting - is very racist, and not at all becoming of a former leader of all free humanoids; more like what you'd expect of a Sith Lord."
Another prominent geek, Martin Cohen, editor of Battlestar Gallactikosher, which tags itself as "the highest circulation Jewish Battlestar Gallactica fanzine in the lower twelve states", was equally unimpressed.
"What rankles is that we geeks have been working to have better representation in U.S. politics for decades," Cohen said in a telephone interview. "Finally, this guy with the geekiest name, the geekiest smile and the geekiest frame you've ever seen is (gasp) less than a parsec away from the White House. This (publicity) is the last thing we need. But I think there will be a backlash. Like in that Battlestar Gallactica episode from Season 2, where..." at which point this reporter felt the urge to retch and could not continue the interview.
While Senator Clinton was quick to distance herself from her husband's remarks, calling them "regrettable" and noting it remains to be seen "what the definition of 'is' is," she stopped short of firing her husband from the campaign (not that anyone is surprised), but did mention she intends to refrain from administering him any "num-nums" for the foreseeable future.
For his part, Sen. Obama was quick to pounce on the perceived faux pas, stating at a rally in Pittsburgh: "Geeks built this country - or at least its interactive gaming sites."
"I know I'm no linebacker. Sure, when the wind is blowing at 20-plus miles an hour, I know enough to stay inside and not get blown over. But that doesn't excuse these remarks, and I anxiously await a response from the Senator from New York, on how she intends to respond to this insult to geeks across this great nation. That's not the kind of politics Americans want."
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