Tea Party Rep. Allen West’s (R-FL) misogynistic comments have provoked a serious backlash. After shooting off an incendiary email demanding that the “vile, unprofessional, and despicable” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) “shut the heck up” and act like a lady, furious women lawmakers and advocacy groups “lined up to exorciate” the GOP freshman for his own “unprofessional, vitriolic and offensive personal attacks.” The Congressional Black Caucus may even seek to discipline its only Republican member.
Now, the ever-petulant West is refusing to apologize to Schultz. Instead, he’s fundraising off it. He sees himself as an “honorable person” desperately trying to survive in “a very dishonorable environment” in which “the hard left can continue to attack” minority and female conservatives.
In playing the victim card with right-wing radio host Mark Levin last night, West assessed that the backlash to his rants originate from the fact that black conservatives “invalidate the liberal social welfare policies and programs.” He then declared that liberals see him as “a threat because I’m the guy that got off of their 21st Century plantation”:
WEST: People who are black conservatives — I grew up in the inner city, strong vavlues, came from a strong military family and background — what we do is we totally invalidate the liberal social welfare policies and programs. I’m a threat because I’m the guy that got off of their 21st century plantation. And they cannot afford to have a strong voice such as mine out there reverberating and resonating across this country. [...] That’s why all of a sudden you have about four or five different websites that went up today saying that Allen West hates women, which having been married for 22 years to a woman with an MBA and a PhD and having two beautiful daughters, that to me is the epitome of the falsification of the truth.“
Given his well-documented history of anti-woman views, he will have to do more than point to his wife and daughters to prove he is not the reactionary misogynist who wrote that email. What’s more, offering partisan, hyperbolic slavery metaphors to vilify progressive Americans will hardly foster the “honorable environment” and respect he so often demands. (HT: Miami Herald)