The Daily Gamecock

Tea Party representative should keep mouth shut

Minnesota's Michele Bachmann makes uneducated, foolish comments

HakeemJefferson01Half-Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin better watch out. There's a new Mama Grizzly in town and she's got all the markings of an extreme right-wing success story — she's beautiful, outspoken and grossly misinformed.

Once regarded as just one of 435 members in the House of Representatives, Michele Bachmann — the super-conservative Tea Partier from Minnesota not known for being the brightest bulb in the chandelier — has become famous for comments that make Sarah Palin and George Bush sound like Einstein and Shakespeare.

In an interview on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews in October 2008, Bachmann called on the news media to investigate then-senator Barack Obama and others in Congress "to find out are they pro-America or anti-America."
When asked by a Minneapolis radio station to share her views on the president's proposed cap and trade legislation, Bachmann said that Minnesotans should be "armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back."

Never one to care much about the facts, Bachmann made news late last year when she criticized President Obama's trip to Asia for being too much of a burden on taxpayer dollars. According to Bachmann, the president's trip would cost the American people $200 million a day and include an entourage of 2,000 people, 870 five-star hotel rooms at the Taj Mahal and, of course, 34 military war ships. Like most of what she says, none of these "facts" turned out to be true.

Given the crazy things she's said in the past and her unusual knack for making stuff up, few of us should have been surprised by Bachmann's recent comments regarding early American history.

Speaking at a Tea Party event in Iowa, Bachmann seemed to suffer from a bad case of selective amnesia when she claimed that once people arrived in America from countries around the world, "it didn't matter the color of their skin, their language or their economic status; once you got here, we were all the same."

According to Bachmann's memory, Japanese internment camps during WWII never existed, blacks have always had equal access to public accommodations, and women have always had the right to vote.

Further supporting my belief that she failed American history, Bachmann went on to claim that the founding fathers "worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States." Again, the facts are not on Bachmann's side. The founding fathers, including Thomas Jefferson, owned slaves and drafted an imperfect constitution that regarded the enslaved individual as three-fifths of a person.

On the off chance Ms. Bachmann is given a copy of this piece, I give her the same advice I'd give Alvin Greene. "It's better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."