Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Ex-Congressman's Islamophobia Backfires

One of the best things to happen in this last election was the shuttling out of some of the Tea Partiers who swept into the House in 2010, and whose "Our way or the country gets it" model of governance nearly torpedoes the economy several times in the last congressional term. One of the biggest nutters of that bunch was Florida congressman Allen West, the rabid Islamophobe who spent more than any congressional candidate in the country ($18 mil plus) to defend his seat, but still lost his seat when the extent of his dogmatism became clear. Mind you, that's not to say West's career in politics or as a far-right blowhard is over-and-done, but it does offer hope that sometimes common sense can kick in with voters. Even in Florida.

Just to give a sense of West's crackpottery, the FL chapter of CAIR (the Council on American-Islamic Relations), a nationwide civil rights group, had not too long ago asked West to repudiate some of his most vocal anti-Muslim supporters, to which the typically erudite West (who was discharged from the military after using excessive force on a detainee) responded with a letter bearing a single word: "NUTS!" Yeah, whatever the heck that means. Anyway, in an instance of making some delicious lemonade out of those lemons, the CAIR folks decided to cash out on West's notoriety (infamy?) by putting said letter up for auction on eBay. The result? $2,625 toward increasing Islamic awareness and interfaith efforts, all by way of Allen West's raging Islamophobia. I love this story.

(Source: Miami Herald)

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