I apologize for the corny title of this post, but it most succinctly gets the point across.
I also apologize for failing to take part in what must have been a dozen lively threads about Trump vs. The Squad. One point I haven’t heard anyone making is that Mrs. Omar is not a victim, abused and intimidated by evil Trump supporters. She is not the enslaved woman in the old drawing, her hands in the pose of the supplicant, asking, “Am I not a woman and a sister?” She is much higher than that and much lower. More exalted, and more despised. In a word, she is a politician. A member of the U.S. House of Representatives, who sits on three Congressional committees, and in a number of caucuses. It is probably safe to say that she has more power in the allegedly white supremacist United States than any of the individuals in that crowd, chanting for her to be sent back. Whether one agrees with the sentiment or not, the crowd was punching up; not down.
It goes without saying that Omar’s privileged position does not make it OK to hate or harm her or to commit any actual crimes against her. It doesn’t necessarily mean it’s acceptable to demand she be sent back. It does mean she’s fair game for protest and ridicule, just as Donald Trump is fair game for such. After all, this is America. In America, the government is obliged to show deference to the people; and not the other way around. It is our right, it is our custom, it is our pastime to (figuratively) abuse those elected to office.
As an unapologetic sexist, I’ll be the first to say that we should pull our punches a bit more for the ladies, than for male politicians. But she’s still a politician. She shouldn’t get the kid-glove treatment for being an immigrant or for her ethnicity. As a fully equal member of the human race, she should receive exactly the same treatment that is appropriate for any white politician of the fairer sex. (Color-blindness: the handicap that dare not speak its name.) Has Omar been treated more roughly than Michelle Bachman, or Sarah Palin, or Susan Collins, in the midst of the Kavanaugh controversy?
Please bear in mind you can agree with all of the preceding, and still not approve of “send her back.” I guess the question is, would we react the same way if Omar was an ethnic Norwegian, and people called for her to be “sent back”? Or if a native-born politician, of either party, faced similar criticism? Do you see Omar as needing special treatment because of her background or skin tone?Published in