Monday, March 18, 2019

Back It Up, Congresswoman

A few days before being sworn in as a US Representative from Michigan, Rashida Tlaib promised of President Trump "we're gonna impeach the mother****er." Promptly after being sworn in, Tlaib stated she "will never apologize for being me and for being passionate and upset."

It didn't help when her freshman buddy, Representative Ilhan Omar of Michigan, accused a pro-Israel lobby ( and only a pro-Israel lobby) of being "only about the Benjamins baby," then warned American Jews of "allegiance to a foreign country" (albeit without saying "Jews"), and avoided being specifically criticized by Democratic congressional leadership. So we shouldn't be much surprised that Representative Tlaib, the first Muslim Palestinian-American in Congress

said Sunday that she believes Islamophobia "is still very present on both sides of the aisle" in Congress.

The remark from Tlaib, who represents Michigan, came as she was discussing criticism aimed at Rep. Ilhan Omar, who, along with Tlaib, serves as one of two Muslim women in Congress. Omar faced scrutiny in February and March for controversial comments she made about Israel. In the wake of her comments, the Minnesota Democrat also became the subject of death threats.

"I pause and think to myself 'is it because she's a black American and she's Muslim?' And so that's where I pause and say to myself, 'Is there an issue here?' And I guess our mere presence there. The fact that now there's not only one but now three Muslim Americans serving in Congress," Tlaib said to CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union"...

"That our mere presence is going to able to possibly break down any of these kinds of racialized, you know, opinions, this kind of Islamophobia that I do feel like is still very present on both sides of the aisle. And I think my colleagues are not seeing that as an attack. It's just saying that we just have a lot of work to do," she said.

It's not because Omar is black or Muslim. More likely, inasmuch as the House is controlled by the Democratic Party, the Minnesotan was given nary a slap on the wrist precisely because she is Muslim. She is tolerated because she is not Christian. Jewish. or openly agnostic/atheistic. And now, with congressional Republicans marching in lockstep with Donald Trump and 90% of GOP voters backing him, to her it's "both sides."

Inarguably, the decision by Pelosi & Company not to condemn Representative Omar's comment(s), instead opting to criticize speech directed toward a myriad of groups, meat loaf, bad quarterbacks, and loud police sirens (other things, additionally) was motivated in part by a fear of being labeled "Islamaphobic."

When a Democratic member of Congress has publicly reinforced the media's bothsiderism narrative (as she did previously, below), it is only a matter of time that Republicans boast that "Democrats" agree that racism and "Islamaphobia" is a problem in both parties. In the long run, directly or indirectly, this will prove to be a major problem for the only party which resists President Trump.

Richard W. (not house) Painter has it right:

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