The context for this little chestnut of racial nastiness was a heated floor debate in the Illinois legislature over a proposed education reform bill. The fireworks started when Democratic Representative Linda Chapa LaVia, who is Hispanic, delivered a speech criticizing charter schools. Ms. Chapa LaVia was no doubt casting aspersions on behalf of teachers unions — who’ve contributed heavily to her campaigns, are bankrupting the state, and don’t much care for competition. In defense of the status quo — which traps far too many children, especially children of color, in failing public schools — Chapa LaVia appealed to her fellow minorities within the chamber. In doing so, she took a racial shot at her Republican colleagues, pointedly noting that “we’re all over on this side [of the aisle], right?” That didn’t sit well with some people, including State Representative John Anthony, who is a black Republican.