Thursday morning, while we were all preparing to lose our health insurance, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) stood on the House floor and gave the kind of speech that would have you nodding your head and saying “Amen” if you were in church. When she was done, Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) called her “hysterical.”
Lee walked up to the podium and stood next to a photo of a woman in a hospital bed. She asked the House to look and keep their eyes “on who will feel the Trumpcare’s mother of all bombs of health care dropped on the American people.”
“God have mercy on your soul,” she said.
“I am a person living with a pre-existing disease,” Lee continued. “ I am a breast-cancer survivor. And this heartless and callous bill, with 24 million-plus people being thrown off of their health care, and reverse Robin Hood of stealing from the poor and the seniors laying in their bed where you’re doing an age tax that is five times more than any other young person has to pay, is disgraceful. And the pittance you’ve giving for pre-existing conditions — $8 billion — they say you need $25 billion.”
Lee said, “I stand with the people ... and I want to say this: I don’t want the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, to steal bread from the market because they can’t get any health insurance. God have mercy on your souls.”
She was a bit over her time, but she got her point across.
As Collins took the mic, he sneered and snidely said, “If I had to defend Obamacare, I’d go into hysterics, too.”
First of all, let’s take a look at the historical implications of calling a woman “hysterical” as written in Vogue:
We should understand that diagnosing people with hysteria has a long, complicated, and dark history. It’s the history of authoritative men pitting a woman against her own mysterious, unruly body, a body that disqualified her from positions of power and a general sense of autonomy. If we understand this, we can start to understand why calling someone crazy is so particularly dangerous: It transforms what was once a dialogue or debate into an attack on the legitimacy a person needs to form opinions.
Second, how disrespectful and condescending was that? He made that statement, then he and his colleague laughed.
Remember, a woman was just convicted for laughing during a confirmation hearing for Jeff Sessions. They said she disrupted Congress. She chuckled, and a witness said it was no more than a light cough.
This man stood at the podium, ridiculed Lee’s entire speech in the most dismissive manner possible, then laughed, and his little friend did, too.
Is the general public held to a different standard of politeness in congressional meetings than our government representatives are?
Remember, this is a game of follow the leader. If the sitting president can get away with being disrespectful to black women multiple times, then it probably goes without saying that his little minions are going to follow suit.
Let’s rejoice in the fact that Ms. Sheila got up there and read these jackasses for filth, and your boy felt some type of way about it. Silver linings?