Many politicians in Washington do not agree with one another but, the Republican Party seems to go beyond disagreement and promote hatred. They hate Obama, science and climate change, immigrants, Muslims, ethnic minorities, labor unions, food programs, taxes, women's rights, abortion, contraceptives, gun control, compromise, and governing. They harbor birthers and white supremacists; gun toting activists and revolutionary hotheads.
Obamacare may be the single most hated word by Republicans. Why? The Party claims it will destroy the country, cost jobs, isn't constitutional, and will raise taxes. I believe they hate "Obamacare" simply because Obama created it. None of their accusations have proven to be true, yet they continue their false rhetoric nonetheless. I think they hate that all Americans, even the less fortunate, are able to obtain affordable health insurance, not just the privileged, through the Affordable Care Act.
Republicans base many of their proclamations on religion. However, religious arguments can be divisive. Throughout the centuries, countries and leaders have used religion as a basis for killing, enslaving and ostracizing others, rather than emphasizing the "love their neighbor" aspect. More often than not, Republicans use their own personal religious beliefs to incite hate for women, minorities, LGBT communities, etc.
Hatred is a learned trait. Learned at home, in school, on television, and by the people we associate with in society. As bullying and prejudice increase, one has to wonder: Does the constant bullying and voiced hatred by Republicans make kids think it's okay to bully? Okay to hate, just because someone is different?
Louis Gohmert (R-TX) possesses not only hatred but ignorance as well...a dangerous combination. Two of his recent small-minded statements include: "The Hate Crimes Bill will lead to Nazism, Legalization of Necrophilia, Pedophilia, and Bestiality" and "This Administration has so many Muslim Brotherhood members that have influence that they just are making wrong decisions for America." According to Casey Michel of the Houston Press, "He [Gohmert] doesn't need proof, or sourcing, or the ability to back up a claim with anything other than the vitriol in his voice and the consternation in his gut." (1)
Michelle Bachmann (R-MN), like many Republicans, also doesn't respect anyone that is different from their stereotypic view of "good people": white, Christian, and heterosexual. "The thing that I think that is getting a little tiresome is, the gay community thinks that they've so bullied the American people and they so intimidated politicians that politicians fear them, and so they think that they get to dictate the agenda everywhere," said Bachmann at the 2014 CPAC conference. (2)
Paul Ryan's (R-WI) incredibly disingenuous and negative criticism of America's anti-poverty programs and his recent speech at CPAC support the painfully obvious fact that Ryan's intense antagonism and blatant contempt for poor Americans is unrelenting. How can he choose to hate poor people? With all this country has provided him, I wonder: Have the poor people in this country done something specifically to him or his family that he shows such disdain?
Chris McDaniel (R-MS), who recently lost his bid to be the Republican Senate nominee, referred to Hispanic women as "mamacitas," and proclaimed that he would never again pay taxes if African Americans were paid reparations for slavery. He mused over whether "homosexual churches" exist and whether former attorney general Janet Reno "was a woman." In a short span of time, his disgust of minorities, homosexuals, and women was splashed across all news outlets.
Some news outlets and politicians share this hatred. Many conservative Fox News hosts emit hatred nightly. Sean Hannity not only provides a forum for intolerant bigoted guests to spew hate speeches, but connects with them in their contempt. He actually joined in when a guest on his show portrayed "all Muslims as barbaric terrorists that need to be hunted down and killed." (3)
Laura Ingraham, another radio host on Fox, has stated she hates the government, Planned Parenthood, immigrants, and the poor. One of her recent fabrications to rile up her base was when she claimed that the government has "resisted audits" on Planned Parenthood. Does she realize the government has records of all of the audits they conduct, at Planned Parenthood, on a regular basis?
Ann Coulter's hatred engulfs kids, soccer, and moms. In a recent column, she wrote: "Any growing interest in soccer can only be a sign of the nation's moral decay... Individual achievement is not a big factor in soccer. In a real sport, players fumble passes, throw bricks and drop fly balls -- all in front of a crowd. Liberal moms like soccer because it's a sport in which athletic talent finds so little expression that girls can play with boys. No serious sport is co-ed, even at the kindergarten level." (4)
Limbaugh has had a long history of mocking, attacking and disparaging women on his nationally-syndicated radio show. His preferred targets are liberal-minded and progressive women he calls "feminazis," but he also calls some of them "sluts," like Sandra Fluke.
As the king of hatred, Limbaugh has made inflammatory remarks that include "If you feed them, if you feed the children, three square meals a day during the school year, how can you expect them to feed themselves in the summer? Wanton little waifs and serfs dependent on the State. Pure and simple." (5)
As I watched the patriotic, inspirational and emotional Fourth of July celebration and fireworks, I wondered how Republicans can hate Obama more than they love America.
(1) The Five Most Idiotic Things Louie Gohmert, Who Sees Radical Muslims Anywhere He Looks, Believes, Casey Michel, July1, 2013, http://blogs.houstonpress.com/hairballs/2013/05/gohmert_muslim_brotherhood_ter.php
(2) Dumb Michele Bachmann Quotes, About.com, Daniel Kurtzman, http://politicalhumor.about.com/od/republicans/a/michele-bachmann-quotes.htm
(3) Fox News' Sean Hannity Lets The Hate Speech Flow And Pushes All In On Islamophobia, PoliticusUSA, June 21, 2014, http://www.politicususa.com/2014/06/21/fox-news-sean-hannity-lets-hate-speech-flow-pushes-islamophobia.html
(4) America's National Passtime: Hating Soccer, Ann Coulter, June 25, 2014, http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/2014-06-25.html
(5) Rush Limbaugh on Women - Rush Limbaugh Quotes About Women: Limbaugh's Negative Comments Target Women, Female Politicians, 'Feminazis', Linda Lowen, Ask.com, http://womensissues.about.com/od/mediaimagesandinfluences/a/Rush-Limbaugh-On-Women-Rush-Limbaugh-Quotes-About-Women.htm
Correction (7/7/2014 3:09pm EST): An earlier version of this post mis-attributed a quote by Sherman Alexie to Congresswoman Renee Ellmers.