Wilson: I Know I Promised to Stop Commenting on This, But John Kelly's Criticism of Me Was Also Racist

Posted: Oct 20, 2017 2:15 PM

So, remember that whole thing about Florida Congresswoman Frederica Wilson pledging to disengage from her unbecoming battle with retired four-star General, Gold Star father, and current White House Chief of Staff John Kelly?  Her spokesperson told the media yesterday that she'd determined the spat had "gone too far," and that this issue really "shouldn't be about her."  Yeah, as Cortney mentioned earlier, never mind all that.  The 'it's not about me' claim was never persuasive to begin with, in light of her whirlwind media tour (in which she ranted about wanting to "curse out" President Trump, calling the Niger attack his "Benghazi," etc).  But just when you thought someone had finally convinced her that her histrionics weren't working out so well, and that her integrity-impugning broadsides against Kelly were actually counter-productive, she reverted to form.  Why walk away from the bright lights when you're a "rock star"?  

Give the people what they want -- and what they "want" is more Frederica Wilson national television appearances firing at the Trump White House.  Oh, can we get a scurrilous accusation of racism thrown in there?  Of course we can.  Now decorated veteran John Kelly criticized her because he'll "say anything" to keep his job and because she's a black woman, natch:

This talking point spread like wildfire on the Left, with Planned Parenthood (notoriously disproportionate killers of black babies) and the usual suspects at MSNBC rushing to play the race and gender cards.  Did you know that Gen. Kelly is from Boston?  Cough, cough:

Allahpundit tees of on the stupidity of this geography-based slime job: "The worst, dumbest offender on this point, as you’ll see in the second clip below, is 'Scary Larry' O’Donnell, who uses his own Boston pedigree to claim a bit of extra authority in divining the motives behind Kelly’s “empty barrel” remark. Fancy that: O’Donnell and Kelly grew up in the same city, at the same time, and somehow that environment produced an ultra-woke MSNBC host *and* an allegedly racist general turned White House chief of staff. Maybe we … can’t make safe assumptions about what any individual person believes based on where they’re from."  Of course we can't, but there are partisan points to be scored here, so reflexive warriors grab the closest blunt object and start swinging. Relatedly, whenever the president or someone in his senior orbit lashes out at a person -- and especially a woman -- of color (eg, Wilson, ESPN host Jamele Hill, etc), lefty Twitter starts buzzing about how Team Trump seems curiously inclined to take off the gloves against, well, 'those people.'  The implication, or directly-stated charge, is that Trumpworld is eager to pander to a racist, misogynst base by escalating feuds with critics who fit a certain profile.  

Here's the problem with that theory: Trump famously escalates feuds with critics who fit any and every profile.  Just ask 'fat' Rosie, "low energy" 'Jeb,' captured John McCain, Crooked Hillary, Mitch McConnell, Jeff Flake, Charles Krauthammer, or 'Liddle' Bob Corker.  The list is endless.  Is Trump happy to go the racial route as a means to an end?  Absolutely, and it's a terrible, childish impulse.  But a-n-y-b-o-d-y who's insufficiently glowing in their assessment of Donald J. Trump is liable to end up in his rhetorical crosshairs, regardless of race, gender or creed. I debated this point with my friend Rob George on Twitter last night, and one of his points was that the Jamele Hill case was uniquely telling because Trump's White House went so far as to call for her firing from ESPN.  Though I opposed Trump's urge to purge in that case, I noted that it actually wasn't unique.  During the campaign, Trump said that uber-WASP George F. Will be "thrown off" of Fox News for his unfavorable commentary.  This is who Trump is.  He plays dirty with everybody, and often reaches for the lowest blow he can think of.  It's an ugly character flaw, but I don't think it's strong evidence of racism.

By the way, there's another twist to this dust-up: Did Kelly "lie" about Frederica Wilson in his Thursday press conference?  In rebuking her, he shared an anecdote about a previous instance in which he'd witnessed her unsavory preening and myopia, recalling how he was "stunned" when she stood up and bragged about landing funds for a new FBI building during a ceremony honoring law enforcement officers killed by drug traffickers.  Video has since emerged from that 2015 event, and Wilson's remarks don't align with Kelly's recollection.  She boasts about securing the naming of the facility, not the funds.  Nevertheless, it's not difficult to see why Kelly found her tone...strange, given the nature of the ceremony.  Anti-Trumpers are touting this as smoking gun proof that Kelly was dishonest yesterday.  It's not.  He got a fact wrong, and he should correct the record, but the thrust of his criticism of her conduct on that day still stands.  Others may watch that clip and see nothing wrong or unusual about her comments, which suggests that interpreting someone's tone and motives can be subjective, which -- ta da! -- brings us full circle, back to Trump's phone call to the grieving widow that touched off Wilson's public fight with Kelly in the first place.  I'll leave you with this video of Trump consoling another war widow, and this latest instance of the media wildly overreacting, like clockwork: 

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