By Abdul Hakim-Shabazz
I was getting ready to write another column about that wild wacky Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz and her efforts to do everything she can to demonstrate why the office should be an appointed one instead of an elected one when a leader of the Tea Party in Indiana provided me with manna from heaven. He drew an analogy between Nelson Mandela and Adolph Hitler.
The name Greg Fettig might not sound familiar to many of you, but I have covered his antics since 2010. He helped lead the charge to defeat Richard Lugar in May 2012 primary that led to Democrat Joe Donnelly’s November victory. Fettig also wrote the book, “Tea Party on Safari, The Hunt for American RINO.” I am sure can find a copy out there since it ranked number 2,585,665 on Amazon’s best seller list.
Abdul Hakim-Shabazz is an attorney and the editor and publisher of IndyPoltics.Org.
As most of us were engaging in behavior typified by thoughtful human beings and mourning and reflecting on the loss on one of the most iconic figures of the 20th century who spent nearly three decades years in prison for fighting against apartheid, a political ideology so reprehensible that it doesn’t exist anymore, Fettig decided to go down the road that few sane men would tread.
Mandela, as you all know died last Thursday at 95. He received worldwide praise for his battle against apartheid and peaceful reconciliation with the white South African government. He served 27 years in prison for fighting against the South African government but was released in 1990. He served as president from 1994-1999.
In his Facebook posts, Fettig, who has also been affiliated with FreedomWorks, attacked Mandela for his affiliation with Communist Party in 1962. He wrote, “So all the accolades and tears glorifying Nelson Mandela. It seems to me that people are either ignorant of fact or believe the means justify the end. Mandela was not the man the LEFT proclaim him to be.”
After being called on the carpet by sane individuals, Fettig then goes o goes on to say, “I am being attacked by ignorant (people) who don’t know all the facts. I suppose had Hitler died today they would all be crying stating that he built a great highway system and innovative military equipment.”
This is why Republicans can’t have nice things and appeal to broader sections of the electorate because for too long they have been in bed with the extremists like Fettig in an effort to win elections and unfortunately too many people start believing their own press.
Now of course, this will be the point where Tea Party folks start coming out of the woodwork and accuse me of labeling them all with a broad brush. I was willing to cut you guys some slack on Fettig until I read the Facebook posts of another Tea Party “leader,” Monica Boyer from the Warsaw area.
Her response to Mandela’s passing, “I wish I knew more history. I need to redo the 90s. I realize I don’t know much about Nelson Mandela. Hey don’t knock me. I was in love during those years studying Brian Boyer. I got an A in that class. It is certainly confusing reading the news…I can’t tell if he was good or bad. His picture looks like he would be a sweet, gentle man…but that’s the only opinion I have. I’ll pay attention in the next class.”
If this is what is passing for the Tea Party in Indiana these days, I’ll take a strong cup of coffee any day.
Abdul is an attorney and the editor and publisher of IndyPoltics.Org. He is also a frequent contributor to numerous Indiana media outlets. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.