The only response political bullies understand

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

In 2009, when Congressman Joe Walsh Wilson (R-SC) shouted 'You lie!' at President Obama during the State of the Union address, progressives across the country responded by sending small donations to his Democratic opponent, Rob Miller. Within the first hours, the donations totaled over $100,000 - sending a clear message to Congressman Wilson and his pals.

In the early days of BlueOregon, when we were besieged by right-wing anonymous trolls, we created something called the "Troll Defense Fund" - and our fans would chip in a few bucks to Democratic candidates in Oregon whenever some troll would show up calling people names for no good reason. It was VERY effective at stopping them in their tracks (at least for a little while.)

In the closing hours of the legislative session, during a heated discussion on the floor of the Oregon House, Rep. Wayne Krieger (R-Gold Beach) hollered "SHUT YOUR MOUTH!" across the floor at Rep. Carolyn Tomei (D-Milwaukie).

Now, Tomei was apparently wandering off topic a bit, earning a gavel from the presiding officer, but Krieger's response was outrageous, sexist, and completely unacceptable.

Worst of all? After losing his cool, Krieger refused to apologize. Tomei responded in an op-ed in the Oregonian:

I was in shock. I was appalled. I can't remember a time in my life when I have been disrespected in that manner; certainly I never thought I would be disrespected in the chamber of the Oregon House of Representatives.

For a century and a half, Oregon's citizen legislators have argued fiercely over politics and policy, fighting for what we believe while remaining respectful of those who disagree.

Limbaugh's audience was larger than Krieger's, but his message was the same: When a woman stands up for something you disagree with, you can bully her into silence. This is unacceptable.

My suggestion? Let's respond to Rep. Krieger in the only way that political bullies understand: Join me and Rep. Tomei in donating to FuturePAC - the Oregon House Democrats' campaign committee. Make a small donation, any amount will do!

Shut your mouth? No, we'll be opening our wallets.

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      Their treatment of women is indeed ingrained in their culture, stemming from their religion.

      "But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." (I Corinthians 11:3)

      "For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man." (I Corinthians 11:8-9)

      These are either Christian beliefs or the Bible isn't Christian.

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    The right bullies men as well. They do not recognize any right to free speech but their own and they are willing to go to just about any length to punish and silence people who speak out against their destructive policies, racism and greed. Everybody who's had their tires slashed or their windows smashed for speaking out knows this -- it's part and parcel of the authoritarianism of the conservative mindset.

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    Having made the ask, I've donated $25 myself. Will you join me?

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    Better yet, don't let FuturePAC try to make the decisions on who should run for Leg under the Democratic banner, and contribute directly to your favorite candidates!

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    It was Joe Wilson who shouted "You lie!" at the president. Joe Walsh is the slimy Illinois congressman that owes over $100k in back child support.

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    From the Curry County Democrats' FaceBook page ...

    It seems that outrageous behavior on the part of our state representative Wayne Krieger isn't a new story. Back in 2001 Krieger created a stir in the state legislature by circulating a violent and disgusting fictitious tale of a female legislator who ... we'll ... we'll let the Portland Tribune tell it (

    "The story described a female legislator in Colorado who worked on gun-control issues being abducted, partially stripped, tied to a statue in front of the Capitol, covered with molasses and turkey feathers, and left there until she promised never to pursue any gun-control legislation again."

    Kriger's story was clearly intended to be a not-so-subtle threat against Sen. Ginny Burdick (D-Portland), a well know advocate of gun control legislation.

    The Portland Tribune article concludes with these wise words that apply equally well to Wayne Krieger's latest outrageous behavior:

    "Perhaps it is too much to ask that our elected officials should model ethical and responsible behavior. Perhaps it is too much to ask that they provide a Capitol atmosphere free from bullying and intimidation so that we can all work together on the tough issues that are potentially divisive, to find solutions to problems and challenges in our society. Perhaps it is too much to ask them to treat their colleagues and constituents with common respect and courtesy.

    Or perhaps, as voters, we all need to take more time to find out just what kind of people we are electing to represent us."

    We couldn't have said it better ourselves.

    Read more about it here:

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      Clearly an example of the violent fantasies towards "uppity" women harbored by this GOP legislator, and clearly behavior that is supported and encouraged by his party.

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    i listened to the portion of the House session in question; Co-speaker Roblan didn't say anything to Tomei until after Kreiger's outburst and after Co-speaker Hanna tried to make the incident her fault. the outrageous thing, in addition to Kreiger, is how Hanna tried to provide cover for his colleague's action. and Roblan, unfortunately, was allowed (apparently) to chastise Tomei for something she didn't do but not Kreiger for what he did. incredibly bizarre.

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    There is a larger historical context to this behavior and the alignment of the GOP with it's "all-in" defense of patriarchy and misogynist behavior. Born in the late 1940s I have witnessed in my lifetime the erosion of the culture of patriarchy. It is far from dead, however, but we can see its death throes in the reactions of the GOP representatives.

    Patriarchy is about the ideology of the right of dominance of men over women. When I was a young boy, I went to all male barber shops to get my hair cut. I saw there men's magazines with very disturbing pictures on the front pages. They were magazines with names like "Argosy" with stories and pictures about men abusing women in various contexts.

    In the 1970s when feminism was beginning to get traction in our country, and the ERA was being debated, we began to see the first frontal challenge to patriarchy on a cultural and legal level in the U.S. Over time the Democratic party has wisely aligned itself with the cause of equality in the home, in politics, and in the work place.

    The GOP, particularly as it has been increasingly the captive of the rabid right, the right wing Evangelical and the Conservative Catholic, has adopted a retrenchment of the ideology of patriarchy, and has given tacit permission for its proponents to abuse women verbally in the public square, and to abuse them legally in the legislative sphere.

    The actions of people like Krieger need to be seen for what they are, they are acting out with permission, the ideology of the right. That is, women should not have power, nor be able to speak freely in the forums of power. Those that do should be abused, humiliated, and intimidated as an example to other women.

    We must not forget that what happens in the public square is just the tip of the iceberg to what happens in the private sphere of our homes, communities, and streets with domestic violence, sexual harassment, and rape. It's all about patriarchy and exercising the claim to power and dominance over women.

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      So, if you are a Republican you are a rapist? Come on! I think you've gone off the deep end with this rampage. I'm not defending what the guy said, it was rude and uncalled for. Don't sweep it into a larger context about all republicans and Christians. You stereotype worse than your imaginary GOP coalition you describe.

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        Stop distorting my comments! I didn't criticize all Christians, I criticized the religious right and it's alliance with right wing politics. The record is clear. The GOP has opposed equality for women, has been blocking the funding of shelters for abused women as we speak in the Senate. I didn't say Republicans were racist, I said they were defenders of the ideology of patriarchy, which they are, and the ideology of patriarchy that men should dominate women is part of the justification that rapists use. Having worked professionally a time or two with rapists I have heard that same justification expressed. And the religious right, which owns the GOP, states clearly that the male should be the master of the home and the marriage and that women should submit. And many on the religious right, including Southern Baptists and Roman Catholic believe that women should not be in leadership as pastors of churches. It is not accident that Rush Limbaugh says what he says, and is adored by the GOP. They agree with it.

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          You mention Limbaugh. What about Bill Maher, Ed Schultz, Keith Olbermann, or Al Sharpton? How shall we generalize the Democrats? Do there statements demonstrate the chauvinism and racism of the left, and prove why they are adored by Democrats?

          And you mention the GOP is blocking shelters. Does this mean that if you don't want the Federal Government to pay for something you are a defender of the ideology of patriarchy? Wow.

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    Thanks for suggesting FuturePAC. I have come to appreciate the work they do to both build of cohesiveness in the caucus and to recruit people to run for office. And, I appreciate the opportunity to stand with Rep Tomei against disrespectful behavior. I’m in.

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      I agree about FuturePAC.

      But credit where it is due - it was Rep. Tomei who asked that donations be made to FuturePAC.

      I'd have been just as happy to donate to her directly.

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