Rep. Michele Bachmann’s feelings are hurt, guys! You know we can’t be having that. If there’s one person who has been magnanimous, kind and never had an ill-word to say about anyone, it’s Michele Bachmann. Well, unless you happen to have Islamic family and work for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Then Bachmann couldn’t keep her flapping trap shut — firing insults and accusations that Huma Abedin (who is also Anthony Weiner’s wife) had ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Bachmann’s words started an international incident in Egypt as well, but you know, Michele, she has a short memory and she’s forgotten all about that. Instead, the outgoing member of the House of Representatives is choosing instead to focus on what fellow Representative Charlie Rangel (D-NY) said about Tea Partiers and Republicans recently.
Rangel told The Daily Beast, “It is the same group we faced in the South with those white crackers and the dogs and the police. They didn’t care about how they looked. It was just fierce indifference to human life that caused America to say enough is enough. ‘I don’t want to see it and I am not a part of it.’ What the hell! If you have to bomb little kids and send dogs out against human beings, give me a break.”
Now, I happen to think Bachmann is once again revealing herself to be the duplicitous slug she is, casually dismissing her own harsh rhetoric to focus on the remarks made by Rangel. I also happen to think Rep. Rangel was spot-on, and it’s not hard to find evidence of the virulent strain of racism in the Tea Party. When they call the president “lazy” or “disengaged,” it’s dog-whistle racism, evoking images of a bygone era where it was totally acceptable to demagogue and berate people of color because you know, God made them in an inferior way. I see everything Rangel’s talking about, as does anyone not trapped in the hopeless feedback loop of mainstream right-wing media. But you know what? In the interest of good will, and trying to make amends with the other side, I’ll go ahead and apologize to the Tea Party and Michele Bachmann on behalf of Rep. Charlie Rangel, so here it goes.
Dear Rep. Michele Bachmann & The Tea Party Caucus,
I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to you. I am sorry that Charlie Rangel told the undeniable truth — that your political movement is composed of the most unevolved, discriminatory people on the planet. I am further sorry that you are too cowardly to just openly admit your disdain for the people you see an existential threat to you and your political movement. I apologize that apparently up to this point no one in your life sat you down and told you that what you’re doing is promulgating a hatred that our country has never, ever outrun and if you have your way, we never will.
I’m sorry that you don’t understand why what Rep. Rangel said is true, and I apologize that any attempts to show you why will fall on deaf ears, because those kinds of messages would have to come from the mouths that are ginning you up into a mouth-foaming furor over made-up scandals. And those people are nowhere near interested in showing you the truth. The truth is that yes, your world, your America is changing right out from under your noses, and you’re scared and lashing out. We all get it, but it doesn’t make what Charlie Rangel said any less true.
I’m not saying, and neither is Rangel, that every single one of you is racist. We’re saying that if you threw a rock into a room full of racists, at least seventy to eighty percent of the heads that rock bounced off would belong to racists. But you know what? Maybe I’m looking at this the wrong way. After all, if there’s anyone who knows about when stupid things get said that need apologies, it’s the woman who insisted on national TV that the HPV vaccine is linked to mental retardation (it isn’t), or the woman who mistook John Wayne Gacy for John Wayne the actor. So maybe I should just bow out at this point and yield to Michele’s clear advantage when it comes to things coming out of your mouth that never should.
Then again, if Bachmann’s going to claim that the Tea Party doesn’t have racists in its ranks, she’s going to need to track this guy down and tear his sign up, won’t she?