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OPINION

Expel Them Again

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AP Photo/George Walker IV

The vote to expel two Democrats from the Tennessee House of Representatives last week reminds us of one of the immutable laws of politics: Whenever Democrats accuse anyone of racism, demand to see the videotape.

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Hey -- remember the 2016 racist bus attack on three black coeds at the University at Albany that caught Hillary Clinton's attention? They claimed a group of white men shouting racial epithets started hitting them, but no one on the bus cared! Foolishly, in retrospect, they didn't check to see if the bus had cameras. It did. Rallies, hysteria, a Hillary tweet ... and then it turned out they were the ones beating up a white girl.

Or how about the Princeton professor who claimed she'd been the victim of a vicious racist policeman in 2016? "Many women who look like me," she wrote on Twitter, "have a much more frightening end to such arrests." After a hue and cry, the police released the officer's dashcam footage. The officer had been almost comically polite to her, despite her going 20 mph over the speed limit, as well as driving on a suspended license.

In 2015 in Connecticut, another BIPOC lady professor decided that, instead of simply paying a small traffic fine, she'd wreck a cop's life. In a blizzard of letters to government officials, she accused the policeman of racism and demanded that "action be taken against the officer." The police released a recorded transcript of the entire interaction -- and guess what? The officer never said any of the racist things she'd alleged. He, too, was a model of professionalism.

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The list goes on and on and on. And on and on. And on and on ... (Though it's important we avoid reflexive cynicism. Only the most callous among us would doubt Jussie Smollett.)

In any case, the moral of the story: Democrats say RACIST!!, you say "Show me the video."

Which brings us to the allegedly racist Tennessee Republicans who expelled two of their colleagues this week just because they were black! (Didn't Republicans notice these guys were black before now?)

MEDIA: The expelled lawmakers did nothing that others didn't do!

Normal people: Show us the video.

MEDIA: Trust us, these lawmakers were the picture of decorum.

Normal people: Show us the video.

MEDIA: We must have left it in the car. We'll try to remember to bring it tomorrow.

There's a reason Tennessee Democrats frantically tried to prevent the playing of the video.

What it shows is two black Democrats, Justin Jones and Justin Pearson, on the Tennessee House floor carrying on for more than an hour, shouting into a bullhorn, waving protest signs, banging on the podium like a drum, and leading chants with protesters in the gallery:

Power to the people! Power to the people!

No justice, no peace! No action, no peace!

Whose house? Our house! Whose house? Our house!

Gun control now! Gun control now!

Please explain how the Jan. 6 QAnon Shaman showed more contempt for the democratic process than Jones and Pearson did. How about compared to a representative sending naughty texts to female colleagues outside of business hours -- the casus belli of the last expulsion in 2016.

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But according to MSNBC, the only reason Jones and Pearson were expelled was because the "predominantly white, predominantly male" lawmakers refuse to "coexist with representatives who are female or young or black" -- as Nicole Wallace put it. (Nicole: Relax. You've got the job.)

In bafflement, Wallace asked, "Why did they have to be expelled? Why did this come to this?"

Idea: Show the video, Nicole!

Rep. Gloria Johnson, the body-positive white representative, begged not to be expelled, pointing out with some justice that, unlike Jones and Pearson, she broke no House rules -- never shouted, pounded the podium, displayed a protest sign or used a bullhorn.

But as soon as her argument succeeded and she wasn't expelled, Johnson rushed to MSNBC to say racism was the only reason she wasn't. The sole deciding factor, she said, was "the color of our skin."

If so, then why did she flap her gums about not breaking any House rules? Why not just say, Hey, guys! I'm white! (Amazon is now accepting pre-orders for her forthcoming memoir, "Profiles in Craven.")

Some conservatives say the Republicans should have expelled the white lady just to avoid (false) charges of racism. Yes, and innocent whites and Asians should be sent to prison so no one can say our criminal justice system is racist.

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I'm sorry if black people break rules out of proportion to their numbers in the population, but we don't punish the innocent to achieve some childish idea of "equity."

Rep. Johnson is a liar, but she didn't break any House rules. Jones and Pearson did.

Johnson defended the assault on democracy by her black colleagues, saying, "The younger generation has a different way of speaking. They have a different way of addressing things." So get used to bullhorns during legislative sessions, America! It's just black style.

Apparently, we've returned to the Treating-Black-People-Like-Children phase of "Diversity." I just wish liberals would state their racism plainly: We simply can't expect black people to abide by white norms of dignity and decorum.

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