I know that “token” is intended to be a derogatory statement, but I see it differently. Many years ago we had a “token” woman manager where I worked. When people would call her that, I would point out that even though she was a token, she earned that job. She had to work twice as hard as anyone else to get it. That is no reason to disrespect her. Of course, no poll worker is a token. We always need people to work the polls, no matter what their sex, age, religion, color, or sexual orientation. In that situation, as intended, the comment was inappropriate and racist.
It’s interesting that both Mike Ragan and one of the other poll workers said, “this is not who we are.” I would submit that for a large percentage of white people in Kosciusko County, this is EXACTLY who we are. To confirm it, just look at the comments on any online article about the Black Lives Matter protests in Warsaw.
I do give Mike Ragan credit for denouncing this behavior. Now I would really like to see him back up that statement with some action because there are a lot of those kinds of statements coming from his camp. Although I do feel a little sorry for Ragan because he really is in a bad position. It must be tough to be a peacemaker between the races when your national leader has almost entirely built his political career on pitting one race against another, from the failed birther movement to the assertation that Mexicans are rapists and killers and white supremacists are “good people”.
I would invite Mike Ragan and all Republicans to attend the next Black Lives Matter protest. Listen to the stories and meet some of the people who are different from you. You might find out you have more in common than you think.