I remember a Democratic friend of mine a few years ago who insisted George W. Bush was worse than Adolph Hitler, a man who imprisoned hundreds of millions of his fellow citizens in concentration camps and whose actions led to the deaths of tens of millions of Jews and others who he deemed undesirably. I suggested to him he was exaggerating. He wouldn't back off. He continued to insist Bush was worse than Hitler.
|Congressman Andre Carson|
Fast forward to Congressman Andre Carson's recent comments suggesting that tea party supporters, including some members of Congress, want to bring back a return to Jim Crow and would like to see blacks hanging from trees. The comments made in front of a Black Caucus town hall meeting in Miami were met with cheering.
Carson's statements were pure nonsense. No tea party leader has suggested a return to Jim Crow segregation laws which, ironically, were instituted and kept in place by Carson's own Democratic Party. No tea party leader has suggested lynching of blacks. In fact, one of the most popular presidential candidates in tea party circles is Herman Cain, an African-American businessman.
But even a good politician can do something stupid every now and then. While hyperbole has its place even in politics, a politician should never go so far as to insult history and the memories of the people who lived through far more difficult times. Yes, Carson should apologize to the tea partiers. But more importantly Carson should apologize to the those who were on the front line fighting for civil rights, some giving up their lives for the cause. It is those people Carson insulted the most by his thoughtless comments.