Hillary Rodham Clinton went to a Democratic fund-raiser last week and made a crack that Mahatma Gandhi once ran “a gas station in St. Louis.” As might be expected, some of America’s Indian immigrants were not amused, as many of them regard Gandhi as a national hero. Also as might be expected, Hillary tripped over her feet apologizing afterwards and insisting that she actually “admired” Gandhi’s life and work. And also as might be expected, the press mostly gave Hillary a big pass on the gaffe, reporting it cursorily if at all. Imagine what would have happened if Dubya had said such a thing.

And frankly, although we don’t see exactly what’s insulting about accusing someone of operating a filling station, a perfectly respectable profession, here’s what was really strange about the incident: The majority of Hillary’s audience of 200 actually laughed at her St. Louis joke. What exactly was so funny about Gandhi at a gas pump? Why, most Democrats don’t even think John Kerry’s hair is funny! There must be something in the water in St. Louis.