A Florida Republican representative accidentally admitted that his party hates LGBTQ people, while expressing support for a bill that would take away LGBTQ rights.
Jeff Holcomb spoke on the House floor Monday in favor of a resolution that states “‘woke’ social engineering and experimentation practices … are eroding military effectiveness.” The resolution would ban policies in the military such as diversity recruitment, unconscious bias training, and the use of gender-neutral language—effectively questioning the presence of LGBTQ people in the military.
“I just can’t let our military be labeled as racist and discrimination without a response. ISIS, the Taliban, and Al Qaeda—those are the folks who discriminate,” Holcomb said. “Our terrorist enemies hate homosexuals more than we do.”
Florida Republican Rep. Jeff Holcomb comes out and says what Republicans really think about LGBTQ people. “Our terrorist enemies hate homosexuals more than WE DO.”
He outright admits Republicans hate LGBTQ people. pic.twitter.com/ayPBGLfRJx
— Alejandra Caraballo (@Esqueer_) May 2, 2023 As he says the quiet part out loud, Democratic Representative Kelly Skidmore’s jaw drops in shock. She is seated behind him and clearly visible in the video frame. Next to her, someone whose face is just out of frame raises their hand to their face, also blown away by Holcomb’s words.
Courtesy of The Florida Channel
Republican-led states across the country have begun blatantly targeting LGBTQ people’s rights, and Florida seems to be leading the charge. The state legislature passed a bill in mid-April that is so extreme it could ban all Pride parades and festivals in the state. The bill’s sponsor said he would support the measure even if it meant “erasing a community.” Yet another bill would allow the state to remove trans kids from their families. Separately, another Republican representative compared transgender people to “mutants” and “demons.”
A man committed arson against two places of worship and vandalized the office of a sitting member of Congress, but you would not have been blamed for missing it.
Jackie Rahm Little, also known as Joel Arthur Tueting, has been arrested after allegedly committing arson at two mosques in Minneapolis last week. He also is allegedly guilty of shoplifting spray paint before proceeding to vandalize Representative Ilhan Omar’s office, a patrol vehicle assigned to a Somali Minneapolis police officer, and a marketplace locally known as the Somali Mall.
Little has a troubling history, and the latest incidents embody the exact kind of violence most of mainstream America purports to care about: attacks on houses of faith, law enforcement, and elected officials. As always, the point is not to ramp up carceral impulses but rather to confront the basic fact that acts of arson against mosques and threats to one of the first Muslim women, the first Somali American, and the first naturalized citizen of African birth elected to Congress are simply not garnering the national concern that any such attack should warrant.
Court documents from the Justice Department detail the exact alleged sequence of events. On December 30, 2022, Little, using the email address firstname.lastname@example.org, sent a message to a congressional email account (redacted in the documents, though Omar has confirmed that her office was the target of the harassment). The message depicted a Quran in a toilet being urinated on by a male subject. The following day, Little sent an image of a bloody ear.
Days later, Little was seen “shoplifting or attempting to shoplift spray paint from a Target store.” Hours later, he spray-painted the text “500” on the door of Representative Omar, photographing his handiwork once done. In the evening, he went on to spray-paint the same message onto the vehicle of the Somali police officer before doing the same at the Somali Mall.
Two days later, Little sent another message to Omar’s congressional email account, with an image titled, “Ready for rush n*****.png” (censored). The image was of Omar in the U.S. Capitol speaking with a colleague.
Finally, two months later, on March 6, Little sent another message with images—one of which was a picture of the “500” spray-painted on Omar’s door.
The following month, in late April, Little started a fire in the bathroom of the Masjid Omar Islamic Center, which is located in the same building as the Somali Mall.
The next day, Little allegedly started a fire at the Masjid Al Rahma Mosque, prompting the evacuation of an array of individuals, including some 40 children who were attending daycare at the center. The damage may have totaled tens of thousands of dollars, according to court documents.
Authorities from nearby Plymouth’s police department say the suspect has a history of suspected arson, including in May 2022 and December 2021; he also has numerous documented incidents of domestic assault and other violent incidents on his record from as recently as March 2023.
“We are witnessing an epidemic of hate against the Muslim community and other religious minorities in Minnesota and globally right now. This campaign of terror is designed to keep us fearful and divided,” Omar said in a statement after the news of Little’s arrest. “As Muslim-Americans and as Minnesotans, we will not be terrorized. We will continue to stand united against bigotry because love is stronger than hate.”
Erstwhile Fox News host Tucker Carlson was caught on camera making crude and misogynistic comments, which could have contributed to his firing.
Carlson was abruptly let go last week, with no explanation given as to why. The New York Times reported a few days later that some of Carlson’s private messages had come to light. Originally redacted in the Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit filings, the Times said the now-revealed messages showed Carlson making “highly offensive and crude remarks” that somehow went further than the “inflammatory, often racist comments” he made on his show. The Times also said it had obtained videos of Carlson making nasty comments about women.
Media Matters released those videos Tuesday, and they’re pretty vile. The videos show Carlson joking around after cameras started rolling but before that episode of his show began. In one, Carlson jokes about discussing his sex techniques on air with then–Fox Nation host Piers Morgan.
“If we’re going to talk about sex, I’d love to hit some of the fine points of technique, but, you know, but it’s your show. It’s totally up to you,” Carlson told Morgan.
In another video, Carlson says he thinks someone’s girlfriend is “yummy.” The third video shows Carlson saying he likes to “wait for my postmenopausal fans to weigh in” on his appearance.
Carlson was Fox’s most popular host, and he made a name for himself by spouting falsehoods, conspiracy theories, and a range of racist, sexist, and homophobic ideologies. He was also the subject of one of the many lawsuits against Fox News.
Former Fox News producer Abby Grossberg, who worked on Carlson’s show, is suing the network, alleging that company lawyers coerced her into giving misleading testimony in the Dominion lawsuit. The move, she argues, was due to a culture of “poisonous and entrenched patriarchy,” citing multiple examples from Carlson’s team in particular.
It’s unlikely that Carlson was actually fired for his misogyny, given Fox’s long history with sexual harassment in the workplace. But his dismissal could be part of an attempt to get out ahead of Grossberg’s lawsuit. » …