Answer: Macaca . . . Question: What single word ended the career of a United States Senator? That is one question that Shekar Ramanuja (S.R.) Sidarth would likely nail on Monday when he appears on Jeopardy. Sidarth is the student who brought down Senator George Allen in Virginia when Allen referred to him as Macaca — a racial slur in South Africa and other countries. Sidarth is of Indian descent. He is one of my current students in torts. [Update: Sidarth came in second].
When Sidarth came to me to ask to be absent from one class in order to appear on Jeopardy, I could honestly say that in almost 30 years of teaching that was the first use of that particular excuse.
I was delighted to know that he had made the cut — a lifetime dream of my own — to appear on Jeopardy. He has honored his agreement with the show not to reveal how he did. I — and his classmates — will be cheering him on this Monday.
Sidarth is a graduate of the University of Virginia in Computer Science and Government. He was selected as the Rodman Scholar in honors engineering program. He also worked as press assistant to Rep. Tim Bishop (NY-1) and as communications director for Democratic State Senate Campaign Committee. He worked in the campaigns for both Barack Obama and Bill Richardson as well as Jim Webb for Senate. He is also a graduate of the prestigious Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology.
He is fluent in Spanish and Tamil.
He already has his own wikipedia site, here.
Good luck, S.R., the hopes and dreams of GW go with you!!!
For those who dimly remember the Allen moment, here it is: