CommunityPam's House Blend

'Jap cars': more racism peeping out of the GOP's big tent

Representative John Kline is running for re-election in Minnesota’s U.S. 2nd District, and his campaign is in a bit of hot “macaca” water of its own.

During a campaign appearance for Democratic-Farmer-Labor opponent Colleen Rowley by Rep. John Murtha, D-PA., Kline’s District Director Mike Osskopp was captured on video outside the venue shouting at supporters who were arriving, chiding that they were driving “Jap cars.” How refreshing to go so retro on us, Osskopp.

Inside Minnesota Politics posted a video by DFL activists who happened to be taping outside the meet and greet event, and they captured Osskopp’s diatribe.

The Star Tribune learned about the video and reported the fallout. Look at the ridiculous “apology.”

Witnesses said they heard Osskopp several times use the word, considered a disparaging term for Japanese. One Rowley supporter, Paul Bartlett, complained Monday to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, noting that Osskopp is a “high-level federal employee.”

Osskopp, who rode his Harley-Davidson motorcycle to the event, apologized for the remark Tuesday. “I apologize if my words offended any Americans of Japanese descent, including my sister-in-law,” Osskopp said. “I allowed my emotions to get the better of me and used a phrase commonly used in my youth, but which is now inappropriate and offensive.”

“Commonly used” (as in during WWII) does not mitigate this BS; when was that term ever considered anything other than a slur? Good grief, what an ass. He gets bonus bigot points for insulting a relative when pumping out that slur. The next family holiday gathering should go swimmingly.

My favorite blog headline on this so far has to be Macaca Two: Racist Bugaloo.

Is there just something in the GOP Kool-Aid that makes racist projectile word vomit occur out in public for these people? I mean we suspect that wingnuts really do believe that blacks can’t swim, and that the country is overrun with swarthy immigrant terrorists who “drive taxi cabs in the daytime and kill at night,” but it boggles the mind that these fools are so carefree about uttering the ignorance and bigotry in front of crowds or with cameras rolling.

And that’s our Tony Snow Lesson on RacismTM for today.

Graphic: The fabulous Mike Tidmus for the Blend

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding