Tuesday, August 13, 2019

#2227: Tamara Scott

Tamara Scott is the Iowa state director for Concerned Women for America, whose mission is to “protect and promote Biblical values among all citizens,” and member of the Republican National Committee. In addition, Scott has promulgated bigotry and delusion on radio and cable TV shows since 1998, and currently hosts the weekly online show “Tamara Scott Live”. She was also Michele Bachmann’s Iowa campaign co-chairperson for Bachmann’s 2012 presidential campaign, and has been involved in organizing political prayer rallies.

Anti-gay activism
Scott is, unsurprisingly, most notable for her persistent opposition to gay rights and marriage equality, and she has alleged that the legalization of gay marriage hurt Iowa’s economy: “It costs you, the taxpayer, as high as $280 billion a year for fragmented families, that’s according to the Family Research Council.” Now, the Family Research Council is hardly a reliable source for anything but hate, but even assuming their figures one might reasonably wonder how encouraging more people to marry would lead to “fragmented families”. Scott is apparently also concerned that marriage equality will pave the way for man-Eiffel Tower marriage. It is perhaps telling that she doesn’t even dimly recognize the significance of consent.

Scott has also argued that it is ironic for feminists to be in favor of gay marriage; after all, feminists want equality, and it is by banning same-sex marriage one ensures an equal number of men and women were married. “So my laugh is, why wouldn’t you want equality in a marriage?” continued Scott. We suspect that there are aspects of feminist thought (the thoughtpart, for instance) that Scott hasn’t yet quite grasped. She also said she couldn’t support civil unions either because that would lend state support of “the act” that “God has not condoned” and thus violate her religious freedom to remain unaware of gay couple having sex: “I can’t condone what he’s condemned, […] So to ask or to force American citizens to condone something that’s against their deeply held religious convictions is wrong. So whether you call it marriage or you call it a civil union, you’re still asking your fellow citizens to embrace something that goes against their First Amendment religious protections.” This is not how the First Amendment works.

Among things Scott asks listeners to ponder are questions like: “If homosexuality is something to be celebrated by the left, by Hollywood, then why does it need all of these protections? And if it needs these protections, then why do we promote it as an everyday lifestyle and a regular choice for our youth?” (she doesn’t really want you to ponder it) and “if homosexuality is truly just something that happens, then why, one, do we have to recruit it in our kindergarten through college-level educational system and, if it’s just an everyday thing, why does it need all these special protections in the civil rights?” She did make it clear for “all those haters out there” that she was just “asking the question, though.

Religion, race and politics
Scott is in general firmly opposed to the separation of church and state (it is “nowhere” in the Constitution, according to Scott, though we have already sort of established that Scott has some difficulties understanding the Consitution). Indeed, Scott does not only think that state-sponsored school prayers should be reinstated, but that we need to repent the decision to end them in order to get back on God’s good side. Apparently, not allowing state-sponsored school prayers has led to “assault, rape, murder”. To back up her claims, Scott cites “studies” done by David Barton, a source that is systematically less reliable on matters of fact than the Deepak Chopra quote generator. (In reality, the rates of violent crime and sexual assault have plummeted over the last two decades, of course; and this is certainly not the only time Scott has relied on questionable sources.) She also suggested that instead of passing a “horrible” anti-bullying bill currently being considered in the state legislature, Iowa should just return Christian prayer to schools.

Later she doubled down on her claims, and argued that removing forced prayer from public schools decades ago led to plummeting test scores, increased violence, more parents divorcing, everything in Ferguson, riots, Antifa, and the Resistance. She then accused critics of lying by quoting her verbatim.

In 2015 she weighed in on the Charleston church shooting claiming that the tragedy was “being hijacked to a racial issue.” According to Scott, the shooting in a black church by a gunman with white supremacist views who explicitly stated his desire to start a race war wasn’t as much a “racial issue” as an attack on religion (it is “being made into more of a racial issue than it was”). Scott then accused critics of the Confederate flag of turning a symbol of “fun” into something divisive.

Scott is of course also opposed to immigration, and has pointed out that “we have no idea what’s coming through our borders, but I would say biblically it’s not a Christian nation when you entice people to do wrong;” she has apparently realized that it is good to give reasons for her claims, but has clearly not figured out how it works or what reasons are. She did, however, warn us that child refugees may be “highly trained warriors”. Elsewhere, she has claimed that lenience toward undocumented immigrants would be a betrayal of the founding fathers, because “we put blood on the line to get the liberty we have, so we can’t allow others not to do the same in their country or we bring those wars here.”

Anti-vaccine views
Given the level of density at play, it should perhaps come as little surprise that Scott is also an antivaxxer. According to Scott, antivaxxers are unfairly demonized: disease outbreaks in school do not happen because people don’t get their kids vaccinated but because the “socialist” schools make kids share pencils and have become places where students are now “facing each other”. Apparently Trump’s antivaccine views are just one more reason to vote for him, as Scott sees things.

On Trump
Scott has criticized fellow Christians for not being sufficiently supportive or forgiving of Trump: “Let’s not be judgmental ourselves. Maybe God’s called someone to a camp for various reasons;” indeed critics of Trump are being judgmental and “not very loving” when they criticize Trump, for “only God” knows the candidate’s heart “and God has allowed what has taken place this far.” This sentiment only applies to rightwing politicians of course; as Jesus taught us that forgiveness is a partisan matter. Note also, Scott points out, that Trump promised that “he’ll end the war on Christianity”; Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, “created the war on Christianity,” which is a surprising claim even for someone who stands out for their lunacy among the religious right. At one point she also suggested that Obama in 2016 was trying to bring in massive amounts of refugees to the US to help sway the election. “Am I suggesting that they’ll be voting?said Scott. I’m not saying that.

Diagnosis: Even we will have to admit to being impressed by Scott’s ability to stand out from her associates; even by the standards of wingnut lunatics Scott’s level of deranged confusions are rather exceptional. She does enjoy a modicum of popularity and influence, and remember: she isa member of the RNC.

1 comment:

  1. I can't believe you've never posted anything about Washington State Representative Matt Shea. He really takes the cake.