“AOC should apologize at least and probably resign,”
-- Steve Cortes, Republican commentator for CNN
To clarify, what Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had said, which Mr. Cortes is so-deeply upset about and referring to is -- "The United States is running concentration camps on our southern border and that is exactly what they are. They are concentration camps,"
For the record, before we go any further, here are the two, and the only two, definitions of "concentration camp" that are shown in my WordWeb dictionary.
Concentration camp. Noun.
1. A penal camp where political prisoners or prisoners of war are confined (usually under harsh conditions)
2. A situation characterized by crowding and extremely harsh conditions
That's it. That's all it says. Okay, so we got that out of the way.
As it happens, there were quite a lot of quotes from Republicans faking feathery outrage at the statement that Rep. Ocasio-Cortez made. The ones that got the most attention were probably the histrionics from Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) who pretended to give a "history" lesson about concentration camps, including links to books written by Jewish experts on the Holocaust, like Elie Wiesel. I'll leave her exact quotes to the dust bin, since that's where they belong. And as a politician who learned empty cruelty at the feet of her father Dick Cheney, I expect nothing better from her. That said, I nonetheless do look forward to being pointed to her similar horrified outrage and history lessons she ever sent to former White House press secretary Sean Spicer who, during his time speaking for Trump, referred to Nazi concentration camps as "Holocaust Centers." Since such criticism of Spicer by Ms. Cheney (or any Republicans in Congress or the administration) doesn't exist, though, no one need expend much energy checking for them. You can save your energy for Rep. Ocasio-Cortez who seems to terrify the bejeepers out of Republicans, because she's liberal, pretty, danced in college on a rooftop with friends, is popular in her district, and gets news coverage -- the latter of which they have been dearly trying to emulate since she took office..Actually, much of which they wish they could to emulate.
I've also ignored Trump's own attack on Ms. Ocasio-Cortez which was laughable in its attempt to seem offended by her and to try chastising Democrats for not rising in condemnation and thereby lacking such things as, in his words, "character," "spine," "virtue" and "moral." After all, not only are such concepts outside Trump's scope of understanding, but it's outside the Space-Time Continuum for him to criticize anyone for their language when the words he himself is stuck with are "bone spurs," "Central Park 5," "birther" and "pussy.."
It's also worth noting that the one thread running through all these Republicans so aggrieved with the vapors is their inability to distinguish - whether knowingly or from ignorance - the difference between "concentration camps" and "Nazi concentration camps" that turned harsh prisons into hell-on-earth crematoriums used to exterminate a race of people.
The other pseudo-outraged Republicans aside, I chose the comment from Steve Cortes to represent them all since it not only goes beyond an attempt to seem appalled and calls for resignation, but he is someone CNN feels is qualified to be a commentator for today's Republican Party.
Perhaps more than anything, it's adorable that Mr. Cortes, expert analyst for Your GOP, is so fluttery-offended by the correct descriptive use of language that it gives him the vapors -- yet as far as can be seen, he has not been even slightly-bothered by the leader of his own party who has --
Called Mexico "not our friend," "rapists" and "animals."
Called neo-Nazis "some very fine people."
Called Third World nations "shithole countries."
Called the American press "the enemy of the people."
Called the U.S. Department of Justice "crooked" and "an embarrassment to our country"
Called John McCain "dummy," "has done nothing," "failed miserably" and..."very foul-mouthed."
Called both Guatemala and Honduras “all talk and no action,” “have taken our money for years," "do nothing.”
Called Republicans "disloyal" "selfishly opposed to me," "very sad."
Called Hamilton "highly overrated"
Called Meryl Streep and Robert DeNiro "highly overrated"
Called...sorry, there's a limit to how much of this I can type. And I haven't even included all the mentions of Trump's ongoing love for brutal dictators.
And not a word ever by Steve Cortes, Liz Cheney, or ANY Republicans for Trump to resign for any of this, let alone for all of it, let alone to...Just Once Apologize.
But to Steve Cortes, expert Republican analyst on CNN, Rep. Alexandira Ocasio-Cortez must apologize and resign (resign!!!) from Congress for accurately calling concentration camps "concentration camps." Resign!
I know, at this point I usually say that this is not about Trump, we know who he is, this is about the officials of the Republican Party who enable him. But no, instead I'm going to say something different.
I think it's good for TV news channels to have a wide range of political pundits giving their perspective from across the spectrum -- from liberal to conservative and all points between. But the foundation for every person has to be honesty. And CNN can do a whole lot better than the disingenuous, hand-wringing, clownish Steve Cortes and absolutely everyone they regularly employ like him. It's beneath CNN and does them -- and does the American public -- a disservice..
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Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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