The West / Wasserman-Schultz imbroglio

Having read what Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz said, which was an ordinary and non-personal expression of political disagreement, and having read Rep. Allen West’s e-mail reply to her, which was a shockingly insulting personal attack, I have to say that West has put himself in the wrong. DWS said nothing to justify West’s response. He should apologize. The affair is unfortunate, as there is so much that is objectionable about DWS that West could have targeted. Instead, by gratuitously insulting her, he made himself the issue.

DWS said:

The gentleman from Florida, who represents thousands of Medicare beneficiaries, as do I, is supportive of this plan that would increase costs for Medicare beneficiaries—unbelievable for a member from South Florida.

West said:

Look, Debbie, I understand that after I departed the House floor you directed your floor speech comments directly towards me Let me make myself perfectly clear, you want a personal fight, I am happy to oblige. You are the most vile, unprofessional, and despicable member of the US House of Representatives. If you have something to say to me, stop being a coward and say it to my face, otherwise, shut the heck up. Focus on your own congressional district!

You have proven repeatedly that you are not a Lady, therefore, shall not be afforded due respect from me!

- end of initial entry -

James R. writes:

Without defending what Rep. West wrote, I will say that the specific content of Debbie’s words are not the only thing to keep in mind—tone and attitude when spoken, the image presented, matter. When they are written on paper, it seems like nothing but political disagreement. However I don’t know the tone and demeanor with which they were spoken at the time, or if that was all there was to it.

Under other circumstances I might look into it but really this also seems like one of those manufactured crises. Rep. West should not play into their hands by behaving boorishly himself—he was, after all, an officer and should be a gentleman regardless of how he feels about someone. But really worse things are said and done by prominent Democrats every day without it becoming a National Case. This doesn’t mean we should lower ourselves to their standards as Rep. West did but it also makes me unmotivated to devote the time to look into the whole thing.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at July 20, 2011 10:58 PM | Send

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