The radical left is quick to scold President Trump for bad-mouthing his political opponents, but when a Democratic congresswoman does the same, the radical left says she’s simply unafraid to speak her mind.
We’re referring, of course, to the horrid remark made by Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., who told a crowd of supporters last week, “We’re gonna go in there, and we’re going to impeach the mother-----r.”
There was a time when politicians, while fully capable of dropping f-bombs, understood the importance of filtering their language in public. They recognized, too, that describing a political opponent with profanity would make them look pettier than their opponent.
But this is 2019, and inside the Beltway Tlaib’s choice of words is not only forgivable. It’s empowering.
“Tlaib and her peers are different. They were raised in a world where girls could grow up to be anything. They were encouraged to speak their minds and challenge the status quo. And they’re doing so, even in a stodgy institution like Congress,” opines columnist Colby Itkowitz of The Washington Post.
We must have missed the #MeToo memo on empowering girls through profanity. But perhaps Itkowitz’s thinking explains why Congress cannot get anything meaningful accomplished. Too many of its members nowadays believe strength comes from tearing down others rather than from superior ideas. No wonder the government shutdown is nearly 3 weeks old.
Here in the 1st Congressional District, where many people still value decorum in their elected representatives, we strive to rise above the impetuousness of today’s politics. Complain about former House Speaker Paul Ryan and his record all you want, but he always conducted himself respectfully. And we would expect nothing less from his successor, Bryan Steil.
To be sure, Tlaib’s problem isn’t the left’s alone. The right is guilty, too, thanks largely to Trump’s ascendancy. We can’t defend many of Trump’s comments—such as his “s---hole countries” remark during a discussion about immigration—any more than we can Tlaib’s. And his sins are arguably greater because Trump’s words reverberate on a world stage.
Rather than rise above Trump, too many Republicans and Democrats have taken their cues from him, using his ill-behavior as an excuse for their own ill-behavior.
Tlaib is more like Trump than she realizes. She has even borrowed from Trump’s doubling-down strategy in tweeting, “I will always speak truth to power. #unapologeticallyMe.”
She’s entitled to her opinion of Trump, but resorting to profanity and name-calling is not empowering. It’s demeaning, and this freshman congresswoman’s word choice is symptomatic of a broader debasement of our nation’s politics and culture. So long as voters continue to tolerate such behavior and reflect it in their own day-to-day conduct, we will get only more of the same.
When will enough be enough?