It’s becoming a bit of an exhausting proposition to keep up with every idiotic statement or action Michele Bachmann makes during her campaign to insult every group to which she does not belong and to embarrass the ones to which she does.
The GOP has made it clear that our imploding financial situation is the most critical problem facing the United States so it seems appropriate in a Bizarro World manner that the party’s most high-profile candidates for president are focusing on private social issues, such as marriage equality, and the apparent pornography epidemic (I shudder to think what would happen to our economy if that were ever banned) and outbreak of Sharia law.
In her almost fanatical zeal to offend, Bachmann rushed to sign a “marriage vow” from the conservative Family Leader group without realizing that the only other person to do so was Rick Santorum. This is like showing up to a party and the only other guest is the host’s maiden aunt.
The pledge itself was mostly a pro forma effort with the expected anti-gay, anti-any-social-progress-from-the past-100 years sentiments. Sort of the right-wing version of a “Best of the ’80s” CD. There’s “Come On, Eileen,” “Take On Me,” and “Don’t You Want Me,” the lyrics to which (“You were working as a waitress at a cocktail bar”) most accurately describe what Bachmann should be doing with her time.
However, it turns out there was a surprise, “hidden track” to this pledge. Let me slow it down and play it backwards for you:
“Slavery had a disastrous impact on African-American families, yet sadly a child born into slavery in 1860 was more likely to be raised by his mother and father in a two-parent household than was an African-American baby born after the election of the USA’s first African-American President.”
I would dispute the use of the word “household” to describe a one-room shack on a plantation, but I’m more surprised by the blatant racism of tying Obama’s ethnicity into this. I presume the Family Leader believes the white family situation has declined in the 21st Century, as well. No one blames Bush for “The Bachelor.”
This statement is mired in the faulty logic that “traditional values” trumps everything else. So, a child born in slavery right before one of the most volatile periods in U.S. history is in a better situation because he is in a two-parent household with a mother and a father (not a husband and wife, as that was not legal — the United States has a long history of depriving individuals of the right to marry who they choose.).
This historical myopia extends beyond race. There was also less divorce in the 19th Century, which is expected when you remove any need to compromise from the husband or any real independence from the wife. This is a social clockwork orange — looks nice on the outside but it’s not ideal upon examination.
The Family Leader appears to have derived its knowledge of black families during slavery from bootleg copies of “Song of the South.” There was some attempt to preserve a family unit but that was to prevent slaves from trying to escape. I tend to view that as encouraging the creation of hostages rather than building a strong, traditional family. The ultimate goal was to produce more slaves and the slave owners were not the Dr. Neil Warren of their day. If it were ever in their financial interest to divide up the families, they would do so with arguably less consideration than someone sells off a litter of puppies.
Bachmann has since claimed this “hidden track” wasn’t in the pledge she signed. She is proudly a post-modern bigot, not a more antiquated bigot found in a vintage store.
Meanwhile, she continues to surge in the polls. The upside is that this could be a replay, viewed through a fun house mirror, of Howard Dean’s candidacy in 2004. She’ll flame out quickly as conservative primary voters realize they actually want to win this thing. Republicans, though, tend not to settle as quickly as Democrats, so she could wind up with the nomination. The colossal blunder of her actually winning the presidency would trigger a little-known clause in the Treaty of Paris, which would revert ownership of the United States back to the British, which is probably for the best.