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Tea Party Member Sends Picture Of Obama As Chimpanzee

Submitted by on April 19, 2011 – 8:53 am8 Comments
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Ok, so we’re over a year away from the next presidential election (read: it’s pretty close to campaign time) and instead of arguing over actual policy issues, the GOP has resorted to name-calling and racially-insensitive images. This time, the culprit is in California. Orange County, to be exact (big surprise there).

One Mrs. Marilyn Davenport, a Tea Party activist and GOP member, e-mailed the above image of President Barack Obama‘s head superimposed on the body of a chimpanzee to a few friends this past weekend. A caption beneath the original picture read, “Now you know why—no birth certificate!”

The image, which Davenport admittedly found amusing, is doubly offensive. First of all, it addresses the racist notion that blacks should be likened to “monkeys.” Secondly, it brings up the “birther” issue, one steeped in racism, which calls into question the validity of the president’s identity and birth certificate. The question for all of us remains: How long are we going to allow such shenanigans from the Tea Party while leaders of the organization swear they are not racist?

Last summer, the NAACP filed a resolution decrying the racist element within the Tea Party, and members responded as if their hearts had been ripped out. When your actions rightfully warrant the accusations, how long can you continue to blame the accusers instead of fixing an obvious problem?

Davenport issued an official statement (of course) apologizing for her actions.

“I humbly apologize and ask for your forgiveness of my unwise behavior. I say unwise because at the time I received and forwarded the email, I didn’t stop to think about the historic implications and other examples of how this could be offensive.”

This is why we hate self-serving apologies. They absolutely insult our intelligence, pretty much every time. There is no way she didn’t stop to think about the historic implications of how this could be offensive—that’s the entire point of the image! It’s the punchline, if you will, to a race-based joke and she did not mean for it to be seen. Honestly, we would’ve respected her more if she had come out and said, “I’m still laughing, I don’t see the big deal.” Apologies for getting caught aren’t worth their weight in air. It is only from candid, yet respectful (and most likely, controversial) conversations that we can learn and grow from one another.

Politically, this only hurts the standing of a Republican party undergoing identity crisis and searching for a new leader. With campaign season on the swiftly-approaching horizon, this image is an unneeded thorn in the side.

Source: ABC Local

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