Well, this is certainly a hot take. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (who has a colorful history of anti-Semitism herself) was asked why she thinks some of her fellow Democrats responded so strongly to Rep. Ilhan Omar’s most recent bout of anti-Semitic remarks.
In response, she fully condemned Omar and….nah I’m just kidding. She said it was because her Democratic colleagues are Islamophobic.
“Why do you think people in your own party reacted so strongly against what [Omar] said?” The Circus host Alex Wagner asked Tlaib in an interview released Sunday.
“You know, I’m trying to figure it out. It’s just this past week, I feel, and I know this would be somewhat shocking for some, but I think Islamophobia is very much among the Democratic Party as well as the Republican Party,” Tlaib responded. “And I know that’s hard for people to hear, but there’s only been four members of Congress that are of Muslim faith. Three of them currently serve in this institution. More of us need to get elected, but more of us need to understand as we come into this institution that I have a lot of work to do with my colleagues.”
This response is pretty stunning.
It’s akin to chastising someone for being upset at blatant racism by accusing them of just being scared of racists. Omar’s comments were anti-Semitic and wrong, to the point where Jewish Democratic Congressional members felt the need to speak out (and that’s most likely who she’s upset with here). Even if Tlaib believes the response was too harsh, to turn around and claim that it was only prompted by Islamophobia is to completely brush aside the danger and pain anti-Semitism inflicts upon Jewish communities. She’s completely dismissing their concerns as irrelevant, but worse, she’s asserting their concerns are simply rooted in their own bigotry.
That’s some pretty next-level spin and it’s become a standard tactic used among the left’s new fresh-faced uprising. Do something bigoted? Just say the person who’s offended is the actual bigot. Problem solved. Rashida Tlaib knows exactly what she’s doing but few are willing to call her on it out of fear of retribution.
I have to wonder how long Democrats, specifically those in leadership positions, are going to put up with this. They have a freshman member, who’s already been embroiled in several controversies hurtful to the party, doing an interview where she accuses them of Islamophobia and speaks of them like children she needs to train. In the process, she takes zero accountability for herself and instead denigrates those who’ve stuck their necks out to support her in the past. They are out there taking punches for her and her “squad” but are being repaid by being called bigots. Will her Democratic colleagues continue to stand there and take it? Unfortunately for them, their inter-sectional coalition probably demands it.
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