A serious lack of respect

Are we really spending any time talking about manufactured outrage over Jimmy Hoffa — saying exactly what needed to be said — when he called on labor to use the power of the vote to get Tea Partyers out of Congress?
 
Seriously?
 
OK, so let’s put aside the lack of outrage, sincere remorse or even concern from Republican leaders when the president’s birthplace and his faith were maliciously questioned. Or the shame of letting that conversation become an accusation of “otherness” that led to a legitimately elected American president’s birth certificate being printed on the front page of national newspapers (while he was secretly planning the mission that would go after Osama bin Laden, no less). Also, put aside challenges to his loyalty to America because his upbringing didn’t include enough Boy Scout meetings and charges of anti-Americanism and a “Kenyan, anti-colonial worldview.”
 
While it begins to suspend belief, let’s even put aside the suggestion of racism or bigotry in the emails of some local GOP officials depicting the president as a monkey, or comparing him to a “tar baby,” statements made about the behavior of African-American men driven by having benefited from programs that create dependency, or the use of Jim Crow-era code phrases about “states’ rights,” “not recognizing our country” or “taking our country back.”
 
Let’s also forget about the deafening silence as an increasing wave of hate-filled, violent rhetoric went unchecked as a man, claiming to be heavily influenced by Glenn Beck’s rants, plotted to assassinate leaders at the Tides Foundation and the ACLU, while former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin called for locking and loading in support of Beck’s incendiary rhetoric. Forget the images of Democratic members of Congress with gun crosshairs over their faces, or toxic talk dismissed as “spirited debate” by the right as the fear mongering crested and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) was shot. Dismiss the wildly inappropriate ranting of Republican Rep. Allen West (Fla.) against Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.). Or the statement made by the Senate Republican minority leader that ensuring one term for the president was his top priority, while the Republican House Speaker instructed his caucus to oppose the Affordable Healthcare Act before giving the president the opportunity to discuss it at a meeting on Capitol Hill.

And put aside that the Tea Partyers are being used as a tool — backed by wealthy executives like the Koch brothers — to advocate for and against anyone or anything that threatens their profit margins, not middle-class Americans.

The thing is, if for some reason you can’t, or don’t, put all of that aside, its almost impossible not to view the repeated behavior of congressional Republicans as either a fundamental lack of respect for the office of the presidency of the United States of America or a lack of respect for President Obama.
 
The pattern continues tonight as five Republican members of Congress blow off a joint session on THE issue Americans most want Washington to deal with: job creation.
 
Among the many adjectives that could be used to describe the behavior, I keep coming back to what an incredibly sad statement this makes about our wonderful country. At a time like this, it’s not about "them"; it’s about "us,” all of us.
 
Members of Congress are elected to participate in leading, dare I say, “governing” our country. Congressional Republicans seem to have forgotten that part of the oath they take when sworn in means working with the president of the United States to govern — not using politics as an excuse to duck that responsibility. The GOP-manufactured divisiveness and lack of respect shown to the president is a far more important topic for discussion than anything Hoffa says.