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Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Thug-ization of James T. Harris

by folkbum

Dear Mr. Harris,

I've been reading the Wisconsin right-wingers for long enough to basically know what level of degradation and idiocy to expect from all the major players--who's good with the faux outrage, who dazzles with cherry-picked statistics, who's likely to fall into standard racist or sexist tropes, and so on.

Of all of them, I'm quite surprised that you, sir, would resort to something like this. As often as you decry the "thug" culture and the coarsening of our nation's discourse by such things as rap music, it confuses me that you would look to exactly those things for inspiration, that you would accuse the Clinton family of "pimping out" Chelsea Clinton.

Now, I know that you have standards for what your not-yet-adult daughter can and cannot do, and perhaps you may be legitimately dismayed that a 28-year-old woman would, even at that age, go outside the house or do things that she wants to do. (Can you doubt that she'd like to see her mom win the nomination?) But if that's true, I don't understand why, for example, you haven't said anything about 23-year-old Meghan McCain being similarly "pimped out" for her father's campaign. Sarah Huckabee, 25, has sometimes been called her father's "field general," and often talks to the press, but I guess she's not being "pimped out." You take no time to reflect on how the two Cheney daughters--or the two Bush daughters, for that matter--worked on the 2000 and 2004 campaigns.

Heck, Mitt Romney locked his boys in an RV last year--I guess so that they couldn't escape and enlist--to force them to drive around Iowa while their father blew through their inheritance. Not a peep from you--though maybe boys can't be "pimped out."

So it makes no sense to me that you'd accuse only the Clintons of "pimping out" their child, unless you're only willing to attack a family that campaigns together if that family is Democratic.

I don't let my students use that kind of language in class, and it would never, ever occur to me to use "pimping out" (or anything similar) as a line of attack against Republicans. I mean, you can go back and examine all the fun that the left had with those Romney kids--and it was a blast--and there was no resorting to the gangsta-rap bag of sexist metaphors.

I just wonder if this is the start of a trend. Are we going to see more attacks from you that have their origins in the thug culture you so decry? I mean, really, how long before you start promoting this "Bros Before Hoes" t-shirt? It seems just a matter of time now.


Hat tip: The ever-brilliant capper.

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