The Racism of Health Care Reform Hate

by Walter Brasch

             The Republican leadership was quick to apologize, Saturday, for racist and anti-gay comments made by some citizens against Democrats who supported the health care bill.

           Anti-reform demonstrators at the nation's capitol yelled racial slurs against Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), who had marched with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and two other congressmen. One demonstrator spit at Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.). Several protestors yelled anti-gay slurs at Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) "I heard people saying things today that I have not heard since March 15, 1960, when I was marching to try to get off the back of the bus," Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) told reporters at the Capitol.

           Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) told CNN the attacks were "contemptible." Eric Cantor (R-Va.,) told ABC-TV that "nobody condones that at all." John Boehner (R-Ohio), the Republicans' House minority leader, called the incidents "reprehensible." But he then said that the incidents were isolated and that the real issue was that "millions of Americans want no part" of health insurance reform.

           But the racism, bigotry, and homophobia although "contemptible" and "reprehensible" were not "isolated." They were heard from crowds who attended Sarah Palin rallies during the campaign of 2008, although John McCain specifically condemned them, and Palin only smiled. They were heard at most "tea party" rallies. They were heard at almost every anti-health care rally for more than a year.

          It is true that most of the crowd didn't resort to venomous hatred, but enough did to make it not isolated incidents of a political party that seems to have long since given up the notion of the "big tent" philosophy of inclusion, and to embarrass Republican leaders who had to issue apologies.

           In contrast, voices of bigotry have not been heard at rallies of those who support health care reform. Perhaps, the health care bill needs one quick amendment—psychiatric care for all Americans, especially those who have sold out any principles they may have had by exposing their sputtering venomous hatred for anyone who doesn't look, act, or think like they do.

  [Walter Brasch is an award-winning syndicated columnist, and the author of 17 books. You may contact him through his website, www.walterbrasch.com]

 

 

           

 

 

The Last Straw: Lieberman Campaigns For Republicans In Connecticut

It is time to strip Joe Lieberman of his seniority and his party affiliation. There can now be now doubt that he is actively undermining Democratic attempts to take over Congress, and that he is overtly the Republican nominee. Jane writes:Because nobody could have predicted it -- Joe Lieberman will be campaigning with GOP candidates Jodi Rell and Rob Simmons today at the Groton sub base (the one that Holy Joe claims to have singlehandedly saved). Simmons, you'll remember, is the GOP candidate running against Democrat Joe Courtney for one of those hotly contested Connecticut House seats. You know, the ones where the Democrat is supposed to be helped by Lieberman's indy bid, right? Joe Lieberman is now actively supporting Republicans for important seats in Congress. He is now actively opposing the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate in Connecticut, Governor in Connecticut, and the second congressional district of Connecticut. Joe Lieberman wants Republicans to hold Congress. Joe Lieberman is actively trying to make sure that Republicans maintain Congress. It does not matter what he says anymore--he is clearly working with Republican candidates. This serves as grounds for removing his seniority, and as grounds for stripping him of his party affiliation.

Joe Lieberman is doing this because the only way he can win this election is both to receive at least 60% support among Republicans, and to have high Republican turnout (see here and here). Since both propositions are sketchy, he can't simply hope they will happen on their own. This is why he never condemns Republican polarizers. In order to get high Republican support and high Republican turnout, he has to actively appeal to Republicans, support their candidates, and turn out Republican voters. This will have a highly destructive effect on Democratic chances to retake Congress this year.

Enough is enough. It is time for Democrats in D.C. to take action in response to this. Tell them that.

Contact the DSCC about this: (202) 224-2447 or info@dscc.org
Contact the DCCC about this: (202) 863-1500
You can contribute to Ned Lamont here, and Joe Courtney here.

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