Thursday, July 21, 2011

In Which I Disagree with Sally on Allen West v. Debbie Wasserman Schultz

I realize that I take my blogging life into my own hands when I disagree publicly and loudly with the fair Sally, but now's as good a time as any.  I've had this discussion of Facebook with The Hammer, so if some of my arguments seem well-rehearsed, well, that's because they are.

Allen West handled this situation wrong, pure and simple.  Here's why:
  • A major theme for him in his email--at least one picked up by the press--is that she is not a "...lady..."  Be that as it may, this immediately turns the spotlight on West, as surely his ability to judge and define what a "lady" is derives from his having the qualities of its male analogue--to wit--that he is a "gentleman".  I cannot by any standard of behavior reconcile his email--not sent privately to DWS--but to the leadership of the House in both parties--as "gentlemanly".  Argue if you will about the rough and tumble of politics and she started it, and they are all adults, and all that gack--but the bottom line is that he makes his charge from very, very thin ice.
  • So--you may be saying--if he hadn't made his allusion to her status as a lady, everything would be fine, right?  Well, no.  Not exactly.  Things would be "better", but still not fine.  You see, I believe one can be an effective politician AND retain one's equanimity.  As one famous for losing his cool--I find myself magnetically drawn to leaders who appear not to--and in some cases, appear never to--do so.  West showed a lack of temperament here, one which bespeaks a sense of amateurishness.  
So what should he have done?  If anything, a private email, or a trip to her office for a one on one ass-chewing.  Instead, he took it public and his self-control--or lack thereof--is the story now.  Perhaps that was the game all along, as he is apparently using coverage of this incident to raise money for his 2012 campaign.  And if that is the case, perhaps some good comes of it.

Remember, I like Allen West.  I just don't think he was up to par here.


"The Hammer" said...

Look CW, I agree it was a dumb thing to do. In politics usually the one who loses their temper first loses the fight. He was being baited and DWS is making him pay the price. He's a freshman and he probably won't make that mistake again.

But the argument you were making on FB was that it was "ungentlemanly", that DWS deserved some deference. That's what I disagreed with.

The Conservative Wahoo said...

But Hammer--that's not the argument I was making. I did not use or even think of using the word or the concept of "deference". His ungentlemanliness was based on the words AND the method (blast email) of their transmission. She deserves NO deference, lord no.

"The Hammer" said...

Ok, I misunderstood.

I haven't been drinking enough lately, it's effecting my judgment.

Sally said...

You're somewhat right. His reaction was over the top and the glee I took in it was exclusively related to my contempt for DWS. He should have omitted the 'lady' reference. But look at some of what this creature has offered up: Republicans are waging a war on women, Republicans want to drag us back to Jim Crow days, etc. Why do these things go unchallenged? Wait, I already know the answer to that.

I really was just overdue in posting another picture of DWS and Allen West gave me an opportunity.

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