Commentary by Harry Colbert, Jr., Managing Editor
“Oh, that’s just Michele being Michele.”
And somehow that makes it OK. The “it” is the vile, contemptuous racists and xenophobic language spewed from the mouth of Michele Bachmann … former United States Congresswoman of the 6th Congressional District in Minnesota, Michele Bachmann … current advisor to the White House under President Donald Trump, Michele Bachmann.
In response to the tragic shooting of Justine Damond by Minneapolis Police Officer Mohamed Noor, Bachmann told a group of state GOP candidates and others, “We had a man, Mohamed Noor, who was an affirmative-action hire by the hijab-wearing mayor of Minneapolis, Betsy Hodges.” She went on to say Noor shot Damond for “cultural reasons.” Those “cultural reasons” according to Bachmann … Noor may have flipped out suffering a “cultural seizure” at the sight of a woman wearing pajamas. The latter is what she said during an interview with far-right website, www.wnd.com. During her July 19 talk with her GOP friends, which was on the subject of the changing demographics of the state, Bachmann warned her GOP pals – and trust, these are her buddies – to not shy away from their racists musings.
“Too many people are afraid of being called ‘racist,’ ‘bigots,’ ‘Islamophobe; I’m not afraid of it,” proudly proclaimed the racist, bigoted Islamophobic Bachmann.
Bachmann’s words are not just words. For her followers and those who think like her, it’s a call to action. Hate crimes are spiking in the Trump era and Bachmann is happy to add fuel to the flames. Never mind the fact that in 2015 a Somali woman was slashed about the face at a local Applebee’s for no other reason than speaking in Swahili. Let’s not bring up the two Muslim men shot last year outside of a mosque in Minneapolis. Or the multiple mosque fires throughout the state. Bachmann is out for blood … in the most literal sense.
But where’s the rebuke? Outside of those most affected, our Somali brothers and sisters, there’s been little outrage. Not too many people are coming to the already fearful community’s defense. Democratic leaders aren’t condemning Bachmann. Of course, her Republican pals aren’t talking out against her. In fact, the head of the Minnesota GOP, Jennifer Carnahan … an ethnic minority herself … gushed over Bachmann’s words.
“Wonderful to be a part of last night’s event in Carver County. Congresswoman Michele Bachmann gave an incredible speech,” wrote Carnahan on July 20 on her Facebook page.
What’s the fear; that in condemning the vile of Bachmann, you’ll be labeled in support of the cop that killed Damond? That can’t be it … can it?
I condemn the actions of Noor. Justine Damond should still be alive … period. And with that said, I equally condemn the words of a seemingly unhinged Michele Bachmann. Her rhetoric, if unchecked, will lead to further violence against Muslims … period.
And here’s the kicker … there’s talk of this racist, bigoted Islamophobe Bachmann running for governor of Minnesota. God help us all.