• February 27, 2021

ELDER: If Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is the standard, what about Democrat 'Kingmaker' Rev. Al Sharpton? - Odessa American: Opinion Columnist

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ELDER: If Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is the standard, what about Democrat 'Kingmaker' Rev. Al Sharpton?

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Posted: Friday, February 12, 2021 4:00 am

Because of offensive tweets posted by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., before she won office, House Democrats joined by 11 Republicans voted to strip her of her committee assignments.

If this is the new standard, can we apply this to the Rev. Al Sharpton, aka a Democratic "kingmaker," whose support was solicited by every major 2020 Democratic presidential candidate?

About Sharpton's power and stature, The Atlantic, in 2019, said: "The 2020 Democrats' courting of Sharpton is well under way. He says he expects his endorsement to make a difference when he makes it. ... Sharpton occupies a distinct space. Other than Barack Obama, there is no better-known Black leader in the country, nor one with bigger reach: The National Action Network has 100 chapters across America, and Sharpton himself hosts a radio show on 70 stations every weekday and a TV show on MSNBC on Saturdays and Sundays."

Once upon a time, normal people found Sharpton offensive. Take former Rep. Joe Scarborough, now a cozy colleague of Sharpton on MSNBC, where both host cable shows. How offensive did Scarborough once find Sharpton? When then-Republican Scarborough served as a House representative from Florida in 2000, he introduced the following resolution, entitled "Condemning the Racist and Anti-Semitic Views of The Reverend Al Sharpton":

"Whereas the Reverend Al Sharpton has referred to members of the Jewish faith as 'bloodsucking (J)ews' and 'Jew bastards'; ... referred to members of the Jewish faith as 'white interlopers' and 'diamond merchants'; ... was found guilty of defamation by a jury in a New York court arising from the false accusation that former Assistant District Attorney Steven Pagones, who is white, raped and assaulted a fifteen year-old Black girl; ... has refused to accept responsibility and expresses no regret for defaming Mr. Pagones; ... Sharpton's vicious verbal anti-Semitic attacks directed at members of the Jewish faith, and in particular, a Jewish landlord, arising from a simple landlord-tenant dispute with a Black tenant, incited widespread violence, riots and the murder of five innocent people; ... Sharpton's fierce demagoguery incited violence, riots and murder in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, New York, following the accidental death of a Black pedestrian child hit by the motorcade of Orthodox Rabbi Menachem Schneerson; ... Sharpton led a protest in the Crown Heights neighborhood and marched next to a protester with a sign that read 'The White Man is the Devil'; ... has insulted members of the Jewish faith by challenging Jews to violence and stating to Jews to 'pin down' their yarmulkes. ...

"Now, therefore, be it resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), that the Congress --

"(1) condemns the practices of the Reverend Al Sharpton, which seek to divide Americans on the basis of race, ethnicity, and religion;

"(2) expresses its outrage over the violence that has resulted due to the Reverend Al Sharpton's incendiary words and actions; and

"(3) fervently urges elected officials and public servants, who have condoned and legitimized the Reverend Al Sharpton's incendiary words and actions, to publicly denounce and condemn such racist and anti-Semitic views."

At the 1995 Million Man March, Sharpton said, "O.J. is home, but Mumia Abu-Jamal ain't home, and we won't stop till all our people that need a chance in an awkward and unbalanced criminal justice system can come home." Of course, O.J. Simpson, whose acquittal was celebrated by Sharpton, murdered two people. As for Abu-Jamal, a Black man, he was convicted in 1982 for the execution-style murder of a white Philadelphia cop. The prosecutor called the case "the strongest I ever had." CNN host Michael Smerconish co-wrote, along with the slain officer's widow, a book called "Murdered by Mumia." Smerconish criticizes "ignorant" supporters of Jamal who, like Sharpton, call Abu-Jamal innocent. Smerconish also said that the cop killer's multiple post-conviction appeals "made a mockery of the judicial system."

Ladies and gentlemen, make way for Al Sharpton, Democratic kingmaker.

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