For decades, the “O.K. sign” has meant simply that.

O.K.

Of course, those in my generation will remember that it was also part of the “Circle Game” where you got to punch your friend if you made them look at it.  Good times.

Well, according to today’s article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Republican Speaker of the House Kirk Cox is under attack from the Henrico County Democratic Committee for using the same hand gesture in a photo as the New Zealand mosque shooter, and they intend to make as much sweet campaign cash off of the photo as they possibly can.

The bad news for the Henrico Democrats is that the photo of Speaker Cox dates to 2011, and the Anti-Defamation League indicates that the gesture in question began essentially as a meme sometime later.  Roughly six years later, in fact.

Of course, the Henrico County Democrats were informed of this, but did that stop them? Of course not. After all, this is politics. We can’t let facts get in the way of a good story and/or fundraising opportunity.  

Let’s explore some possible explanations for this photographic snafu, shall we?  Perhaps the Henrico County Democratic Committee is correct after all.

Could it be that Speaker Cox is a time traveller?  Indeed, perhaps Kirk Cox, like the movie super villain Thanos, possesses the power to bend both time and space to his whim.

Perhaps he has deciphered the clockwork of the cosmos and created a time machine to do it for him while selfishly keeping his discovery and invention from the rest of us, all for the sole purpose of going back in time to troll everyone with a farcical symbol of white supremacy that didn’t yet exist in 2011.  This is admittedly a little bit extravagant, so let’s move on to another theory.

Maybe Kirk Cox really is a terrible racist who just hid it from everyone through his years in politics and then managed just last month to be the only high profile elected official in Richmond, the next in line to the governorship if the three scandal-plagued men ahead of him were brought down, to escape the scrutiny to which everyone else around him was being subjected.

Finally, and this is my most outrageous theory of all, but maybe Speaker Kirk Cox’s hand just kind of happened to rest awkwardly when he had his picture taken.  It’s not like any of us has ever looked at a picture of ourselves and laughed at how we were standing or anything, right? Obviously, this explanation is the most absurd of them all.

So congratulations to the Henrico County Democratic Committee for being the first ones to discover that House Speaker Kirk Cox possesses the ability to travel through time, evade the scrutiny which nearly brought down other high public officials for racial scandals, and pose for a picture while making a hand signal that started as a meme and a joke on various websites six years after said photograph was taken.

Great work, guys.


Andrew Hull is a rising 1L at the Regent University School of Law.