Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Railroading Rep. Steve Cohen: reverse racism, reverse sexism, homophobia, and anti-semitism

From a friend of mine in an e-mail:

This looks really bad at first, like a racist southerner throwing the term "Armenian" around a lot, hatefully, but there's more to the story:

It's discouraging to see in the Presidential race a post-identity politics candidate who speaks of coming together, putting differences aside and working for the greater good - ultimately fulfilling King's Dream and then within his own party the exact opposite.

Here you have a smack in the face to one of the most liberal democrats in the Congress who's being beleaguered simply because he's a white male representing an overwhelmingly African-American congressional district. Has he done anything in congress against those he represents? Far from it. But his opponent in the primary is an African-American Female who insists that the only person "fit" to represent an overwhelmingly African-American District is an African-American. Not only that his opponent, Ms. Tinker has run a campaign that would make even Karl Rove cringe, calling for his ouster because he's Jewish and because he supports LGBT rights. And the hyper feminist group Emily's List is behind his opponent despite his pro-choice record, why, because his opponent is a female.

But why the kerfuffle over the "Armenian Photographer" (who's in the bag for Tinker)? Well American Armenians are rather upset about Cohen's vote against the "Genocide Resolution" in Congress that would have labeled the mass death of the Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Turks as genocide mainly as a measure to protect our troops. But there's potentially more. Armenians themselves over the years have been virulently antisemitic, and as of lately there's been a huge rise in antisemitism in the home country. One can't help but infer that historical memory is also in play when it comes to Mr. Cohen and his bid to retain his seat.

It begs the question, is this the dark underbelly of the Democratic party? Is the coalition to broad and inclusive? Has the post-identity politics of Barack Obama not sent these types of Partisans to the hills? The short of it is unfortunately not. If it's not Ms. Tinker's campaign against Cohen, it's the PUMAs out there, and other groups of people who simply can't let go of past transgressions and mentalities and work for the common good, unless that common good is fashioned in their image. Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Barack Obama - and yes, even you Mrs. Clinton have a lot of work to do to dismantle the hold identity politics have on your party and reeducate these fervent foot soldiers.

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