Tweets About Elaine Chao: On the Left, We Treat Our Screw-Ups with Honor:
Here in Left Blogsylvania, we give a fuck. We give a fuck because we believe it matters to give a fuck. When someone on our side fucks up and fucks up badly, we don't automatically circle the wagons. We want punishment. Look at Anthony Weiner versus, say, David Vitter. We want apologies - real apologies, not apologies that go something like "I'm sorry if I offended you when I murdered your dog. It wasn't my intention to offend you but rather simply murder your dog."
So when an offensive tweet from Progress Kentucky, a not-really Super PAC devoted to defeating Senator Mitch "What the hell is that between your chin and neck? You should get that tumor checked" McConnell, was brought to everyone's attention nearly two weeks after it was sent out to the 2000 followers of the account, Left Blogsylvania went all Twitchy on its own. (If you understand what that last part of the sentence means, the Rude Pundit feels your pain. Let's jab needles in our eyes together.)
The tweet was about McConnell's wife, George W. Bush's Labor Secretary, Elaine Chao, whose record is worthy of criticism. But she's Chinese-American. And you can't link to an article about her, identify her as the Senate Minority Leader's wife (must...resist...urge to joke...about "Minority Leader"...), and say, "May explain why your job moved to #China!" See, that shit's just racist, whatever you intended, and we on the left understand that if we're gonna go nutzoid when someone on the right does it, then what's good for the motherfuckers is what's good for the progressives.
Left Blogsylvania and the actual liberal media condemned it thoroughly. Salon, Think Progress, Wonkette, Talking Points Memo, even Huffington Post, taking a break from all Anne Hathaway's nipples all the time, and the New York Times all posted variations on "That's some bullshit."
You know what you didn't see? You didn't see any of the major voices of theleft leaping in to defend Progress Kentucky. You didn't see Daily Kos writing posts about how, of course, Progress Kentucky didn't mean anything racist; they just meant to point out that Chao's tenure as Labor Secretary saw a shift in American jobs to China. If this had been someone on the right saying it? If it had been one of Karl Rove's Super PACs? The wagons would have circled like they were protecting American Jesus from the Lamanites. Rush Limbaugh would have devoted half a fuckin' show to blowharding about liberal political correctness. Bill O'Reilly would have blamed Obama. Laura Ingraham would have had Michelle Malkin on as an honorary Asian to talk about how it wasn't offensive at all, just true. They would have gone all Todd Akin. They would have gone all Richard Mourdock, trying to say what's wrong is the attempt to silence it. Somehow, guns would have been mentioned, for sure.
But we're not them because we're generally not dicks about such things (we're dicks about other things and have blinders on many more, but that's not what's being discussed today). We call out racism, sexism, and homophobia. We hope that those being called out will do the right thing. In this case, potential McConnell opponent Ashley Judd condemned the tweet, as did the Kentucky Democratic Party.
In fact, after at first trying to say it wasn't racist, Progress Kentucky issued a full apology: "We apologize to the secretary for that unnecessary comment and have deleted the tweets in question." You see how easy that is?
Now, Progress Kentucky is a tiny, mostly worthless organization. It's easy to pile on it. But time and again, the left proves that it demands a devotion to truth and fair discourse.
Which, by the way, is why the right is able to walk all over us all the time.