If this is the face of anti-health care reform protest, the GOP has a serious problem.
This unidentified man decided he was doing the Tea Party-anti-reform effort a real solid by hanging freshman Maryland Democratic Rep. Frank Kratovil in effigy [note the creepily expert knotted noose] with a placard "Congress Traitors The American [and a word that looks like "idol"].
The event — a rally in Salisbury, Md. on the Eastern Shore — was sponsored by the business-funded Americans for Prosperity, a group that includes James Miller, a Federal Trade Commission chairman and budget director during the Reagan administration.
"Frank has no problem with people letting him know how they feel about legislation or him in general, but of course he feels that this one guy was way out of line and most reasonable people would agree that an effigy doesn’t add anything productive to what is a very important debate," said a Kratovil spokesman.
"He has had a lot of constructive conversations with constituents where he has expressed his concerns with the bill and they have done the same, he prefers to focus on those."
The pic was snapped by the conservative Salisbury News, which supported the rally but was repulsed by the noose guy.
SBYNews blogger Joe Albero, who apparently took the photo, writes:
My hat is tipped to ALL of the AFP individuals who chose to walk away as they refused to partake in such ignorance and abuse. You know me Folks, I call it like I see it.
I firmly believe in any one’s first amendment rights. However, there comes a time when that right is abused and IMHO this is one of them.
To The Kratovil Family, my apologies for posting this image but it had to be done and these people had to be called out for their actions.
h/t Washington Independent
UPDATE: As it turns out, the dangling of a noose has distant but painful historical resonance on the Eastern Shore.
The Salisbury area was the site of the last two racial lynchings that took place in the state of Maryland — both in the 1930s, according to Polly Stewart. a former Salisbury University professor interviewed by NPR earlier this year.
Stewart, a folklorist who researched the crimes, detailed the reaction of predominantly-white local historical society when she confronted them with evidence of the lynchings in the mid-1980s:
"I thought that because I was in a position of prestige at the university, or the college then, and because I was socially friendly with a lot of this people, I would be able to present to them some theory which would explain why the lynchings had happened… [W]hat did happen was that I was attacked. They were furious with me. They were in flames. They were just shaking with rage, some of them.
She added, "[T]he result of it was really that I was iced out of the upper crust for the next 20 years. I was there for 30 years and 20 of those years I was – my name was mud."