Friday, April 19, 2019

A Party of Bigots

Bret Stephens assumes that Democrats can listen to reason. Hope dies hard. Stephens has not quite accepted the fact that today's Democrats are not really liberals and progressives; they are radicals. Alas, the Democratic Party has lost touch with its traditions and has become fertile ground for radical firebrands and bigots. Stephens entitled column: “Ilhan Omar, Harbinger of Democratic Decline.”

Not to be too picky about it, but Omar is not a harbinger, she is a symptom. The decline is here. The once-proud Democratic Party has descended into the gutter, led by their mindless embrace of identity politics. By the terms of identity politics, Omar is a woman of color and therefore colorless non-women are not allowed to question her views. It’s a horror, but it’s one that the Democratic Party has dug itself into. It does not presage decline; it shows a party already in decline.

All you need do to measure the abject shamelessness of the Democrats and the media chatterers is listen to them insist that Donald Trump really did commit collusion and that if he did not collude with the Russians, he did worse than collude. And yet, as Trump himself tweeted this morning, these same Democrats have absolutely nothing to say about the simple fact, established by the Mueller investigation, that the Russian attempts to interfere in our election process all occurred on Barack Obama’s watch. By the laws of identity politics Trump can do no right, and Obama can do no wrong.

No, this is not a harbinger of decline. This is moral and intellectual decline.

Anyway, Stephens is a great optimist so he makes what seems to me to be a vain attempt at reason. He takes Omar’s remarks about 9/11, “some people did something” and placed them in different contexts. Keep in mind Omar spoke these remarks to CAIR, a Hamas front:

Spot the problem with the quoted remarks:

(1) The Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 was “something some people did.”

(2) Last month’s attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, was “something someone did.”

(3) The 2015 massacre at a black church in Charleston, S.C., was “something someone did.”

Now imagine that a public figure with a history of making racially inflammatory remarks — someone like Representative Steve King of Iowa or, better yet, President Trump — had said any of this. (Neither of them did.) Would you not be appalled?

The correct answer is: yes, but. That is, Stephens’s readers would be appalled if Trump had said it because they are appalled by everything Trump says. It’s not the content of the remarks and it is certainly not the content of anyone’s character. It’s the identity of the speaker. Since Omar does not belong to the vast right wing conspiracy, since she identifies as the victim of right wing oppression, she can say what she wants… and we are obliged to defend it. We must do so because otherwise we would be colluding with oppression and would be stifling the righteous truths that issue from her mouth.

Stephens continues his attempt, probably vain, to persuade his readers to judge Omar:

Of course you would. You’d be insulted by the evasiveness of the he something and someone. You’d be revolted that a right-wing politician would fail to speak forcefully against the bigotries too often found among his followers and fellow travelers. You’d be disgusted by the deliberate attempt to conceal the scale of the horror, the identity of the perpetrators, and the racist ideology that motivated them.

Of course, Omar’s comments are of a piece with her general bigotry, against Jews, against Israel and against America. She has been called out on it repeatedly. And Congressional Democrats have rushed out to defend her. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has vouched for her, declaring that Omar’s soul does not contain the least smidgeon of bigotry.

The problem is also that the remarks didn’t come from just anyone. Just as Trump has repeatedly made his ethnic prejudices plain, so has Omar. She has demonized Israel, and American supporters of Israel, in terms that are unmistakably anti-Semitic. She has been reproached by fellow Democrats, claimed ignorance by way of apology, and then slurred Jews again — without apology. And despite claiming to be a champion of human rights, she has been oddly selective about the human-rights issues that elicit her outrage.

He continues:

In this case, however, a victim of bigotry is also a major and unflinching bigot in her own right. That the president has chosen to target Omar may smack of rank hypocrisy, but it would be political malpractice for him not to pick the fight. Her views as a public figure, and what they signify for the party she represents, are fair game.

All the more so as progressives rush to her defense. Omar is not a significant figure in her own right. And the House of Representatives has never lacked for cranks, knaves, fools and bigots.

The political party that put Jeremiah Wright’s protégé in the White House and that embraces Rev. Louis Farrakhan has found in Ilhan Omar someone it can embrace. The important point is that today’s Democratic politicians, the most powerful in the Congress, cannot bring themselves to denounce the bigotry in their midst. Perhaps because they have become the party of bigots. Their war on bigotry has boomeranged. It's the last thing they want to hear. Clearly, they are not about to listen to reason.

What is significant is that Omar’s defenders don’t consider her prejudices about Jews as particularly disqualifying, morally or politically, at least not when weighed against the things they like about her (and hate about her enemies). As for her views about Israel, she’s practically mainstream for her segment of the Democratic Party — a harbinger of what’s to come as the old guard of pro-Israel liberals like Majority Leader Steny Hoyer gives way to the anti-Israel wokesters typified by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.


sestamibi said...

Everythin you say is true, and yet . . .

The Dems gained 40 House seats last November with the public knowing all of this. Total House vote was 60 million D, 50 million R.

Do not think for a moment that the American public is not on board for all of this. It's not going to be resolved real pretty.

Sam L. said...

Only some of the American public, ses, but too Dem much of it.

Anonymous said...

Its amazing the number of registered voters seem to outnumber actual adult residents of many jurisdictions by in many cases hundreds of thousands. But then again this occurs in large urban areas, and why shouldn't the dead vote. As Bernie says, murderers have a right to vote, and as we know someone who can't buy a beer but is 16 should vote, because the wisdom of a 16 year old elevates our collective decision making, at least if you are a Demorat.

I predict despite the resurrectionist voters, the use of foreign voters, the employment of convicted felons, and space aliens, we will see the GOP control the senate, the house and the White House. After this insanity will continue to reign within the halls of academia, the bath houses where Demorats dwell, in Hollyweird where the perverts live, in the exclusive enclaves where nonwhites are not tolerated much less those who cling to their religion and guns. But the reign of the demented will be rolled back and the era of Obama exposed to sunlight. Hopefully many will go to prison and live in infamy in the history books.

Maybe both Moooochelle and Obama will get full transition sex changes so they can go to their proper bathrooms.

Anonymous said...

Being a former "democrat" and at the risk of being called a bigot I present this great impression:

Sooner or later if one mocks others, they will become the mocked.