Where’s Africa? Don’t ask a Republican
Forget Jersey Shore and Snookie’s emotional rants. Forget Real Housewives of Atlanta and all of its
ratcheness classiness. If I really want to get a good laugh these days I tune into a Republican Presidential Candidate debate. I try to take politics seriously but when you have so many clowns in the arena it’s hard not to laugh, at least giggle a little bit.
Most of America knows that Rick Santorum has a Google problem. After last weeks Republican debate though, it is clear that the GOP hopeful has a geography problem as well. Responding to a question during the debate televised on CNN, former Pennsylvania Senator Santorum committed a major gaffe on a little, obscure place called Africa. It seems Santorum seems to think that the world’s second-largest continent isn’t all that important — or a continent at all. Fielding a question from former Bush Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz on poverty in third-world nations, Santorum said that American action in Africa to deal with their AIDS epidemic is “absolutely essential.”
Santorum probably should have stopped right there. Sadly, he didn’t.
“Africa was a country on the brink of complete meltdown and chaos,” he added.
With 56 countries spanning around 12 million square miles, Santorum may have made a little mistake. Standing alongside such brilliant minds as Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann last night though, he was at least in good company — and seems to have at least meant well too. While other candidates spoke out against US support overseas, Santorum at least acknowledged that America should be working with Africa — whether country or continent — to help their crisis.
I wish I could say that this was an isolated incident and that Santorum was the alpha and omega in this embarrassing display of basic geographical illiteracy. Unfortunately, a few weeks ago Herman Cain insisted that the Taliban has a strong foothold in the new Libyan government, and at a debate earlier this year, Michele Bachmann goofed that she didn’t even know that Libya was in Africa.
Perhaps, we should forgo GOP debates, and force the candidates to go on the show are your smarter than a 4th grader. Whichever candidates has the least defeats by the prepubescent Einsteins will win the nomination. Extreme? Maybe, but our country deserves better.