Future of the Democratic Party: How AOC turned the guns of racism against Nancy Pelosi
by Washington Examiner
| July 12, 2019 09:35 AM
Poor Nancy Pelosi. The Democratic House speaker worked harder than anyone to win Team Blue its majority in Congress. But she played by an old set of rules, and her party’s unruly young leaders have decided she goes on the ash heap with Joe Biden and all the other Klansmen — er, sorry, Klanspeople.
Of course, it’s absurd even to think of Pelosi as some kind of racist or sexist. But a decade of Democratic progress finally caught up with her on Wednesday. San Francisco’s liberal feminist leader finally fell victim to her party’s much-atrophied capacity for discussion and critical thinking in the twenty-first century.
It all began when Pelosi attempted to enforce some party discipline. Certain House Democrats, particularly Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, were airing the party’s dirty laundry over social media. She demanded some discretion and grown-up behavior. Ocasio-Cortez responded … by calling her a racist and a sexist, of course.
“When these comments first started, I kind of thought that she was keeping the progressive flank at more of an arm’s distance in order to protect more moderate members, which I understood,” the New York Democrat said. “But … it got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful … the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”
Later, Ocasio-Cortez restated and amplified this criticism. “It’s really just pointing out the pattern,” she said. “We’re not talking about just progressives, it’s singling out four individuals,” namely, herself, Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, and Aryanna Pressley of Massachusetts; all nonwhite women recently elected to Congress. (And it has to be that they’re “women of color,” it can’t possibly be their failure to work together as a party or their lack of political judgment.)
So how has it come to this, that any bright-eyed, young Rep. Janie-Come-Lately can lob ludicrous accusations of racism and sexism at a battle-hardened liberal feminist leader like Pelosi? For the liberal Left of 2019, this is what comes naturally. The snake has finally gotten around to eating its own tail.
This is what the future of the Democratic Party looks like.
It didn’t happen overnight, of course. During the Obama era, top Democratic influencers discovered a shortcut to political debate with Republicans. You don’t need to make arguments or propound new ideas. Just indiscriminately call them racists. Even if you’re not discussing an explicitly racial issue, then you could at least say they’re racists for disparaging the first black president and his agenda.
You criticized Obama for playing too much golf? Nice try, racist! You want lower taxes or less government? You own a gun? You’re pro-life? Surely, there is some convoluted argument that your position or your lifestyle is based in racism (the details don’t matter too much). And there is no shortage of intellectually vapid left-wingers ready to make the case.
Redistricting, which was great before Democrats lost control of it, is also racist. In fact, elections are racist, at least every time Democrats lose them.
Eventually, the wolf-cry of racism became a shortcut for dealing with almost any disagreement, political or otherwise. Completely nonpolitical people became thought-criminals without realizing it. Milk, the “OK” hand gesture, and the original U.S. 13-star flag have now become racist symbols, too.
That longstanding Democratic icons like Biden and now Pelosi should be devoured by this same irrational beast is just part of the natural order of things.
We’ve learned in the last ten years that name-calling “racist” doesn’t usually settle issues or win elections. It certainly doesn’t make a sound case for ideas or rational arguments. But it does create ample ill will and division in American politics. And most importantly, it always throws opponents off their game, particularly if they are decent people who in truth abhor racial prejudice.
So you really have to admire Ocasio-Cortez’s ruthlessness in mau-mauing Nancy Pelosi. She has been in Congress less than a year, and the freshman has already found a way to wield the Democratic Party’s weapons of mass destruction against its own leaders.
That is the way the world works – you set your trap and sooner or later – you get caught in your own trap.