On Tuesday, the Tea Party’s Jody Hice won the Republican run-off in Georgia’s 10th Congressional District. This district is so conservative that, in 2012, Democrats didn’t even put up a candidate to oppose the incumbent Republican representative. So, barring a miracle, it looks like the Hiceman will cometh to Congress.
So who is Jody Hice? Well, he’s not just your garden-variety bigot. He’s like a cheap parody of a bigot. If a writer on True Blood came up with the character of Jody Hice, the producers would reject it for being too over the top.
Now obviously I’m not going to like this guy, and a lot of publications have already gone through his history of making mind-bogglingly stupid and hateful comments. Instead, I’m offering to help Jody Hice be less of an intolerant jackass.
First, however, a brief overview for those of you who are new to Hice and his peculiar worldview. Who does Hice hate? Let us count the groups. Hice has said Muslim Americans like myself don’t “deserve First Amendment protection” because Islam isn’t a religion but a “geopolitical structure.” Seriously. He said that. In 2012.
Then again, Hice does have something of a history of mixing politics and religion, so at least he knows whereof he speaks. In fact, he had quite the battle with IRS when they threatened to take away tax exemptions from churches that preach politics. “As a pastor, I have the right to speak biblical truth without being punished for it,” he said in a post on his website. To Hice, I suppose, speaking the “biblical truth” means endorsing John McCain from the pulpit, like he did in 2008.
Unsurprisingly enough, Hice isn’t a big fan of the gays, either. He has warned about a nefarious gay plot he uncovered that proves gays are planning to turn “your sons” into “minions” of gay men. But credit where credit is due, I guess: Hice doesn’t just rely on loony old conspiracy theories and stereotypes. Instead, he uses his apparently quite active imagination to create equally batshit new ones, such as that gay people have a “tendency” to be “violent” and “lie.”
What about women? Well, it wouldn’t be fair to say he hates them. Ever the charmer, Hice just thinks they should get the permission of their husbands before they do much of anything. We discovered this when a reporter asked Hice if women show be able to seek elected office. Hice, being a forward thinker, responded, “If the woman’s within the authority of her husband, I don’t see a problem.”
Do we even need to get into Hice’s views on reproductive rights? Sure enough, he thinks women don’t have any. Hice has even likened those people who fight for reproductive rights to Hitler and the Nazis, which is pretty clichéd if you ask me. Why do the right-wing guys always go straight to the Nazis and Hitler? Have they never heard about Pol Pot?
Anyway, if you really want to do a deep dive into all things Hice, pick up his book, It’s Now or Never: A Call to Reclaim America. The reviews on Amazon for the book are mixed. OK, there are two. There’s a real rave, which was probably written by someone who’s last name rhymes with the word “mice.” And here’s the other one: “Hice is very shoddy on history (facts) and much stronger on ‘beliefs.’ Hence—a hack destined for 25c bargain bins, fire starting, and if you really really must, camping toilet paper.”
Yikes, I’ve received some bad reviews in my day, but that one will leave a mark. And in Hice’s defense, his book is not in the 25-cent bargain bin. In fact, the Kindle version is available for $3.03. So take that, mean critic!
Of course, the least funny thing about Hice is that he will very likely be one of the 435 members of the House of Representatives come January. So what can we do to change Hice’s views?
Well, I, for one, think lack of exposure plays a role in hating other groups. That’s why I lined up some people who have offered to “Hang with Hice,” which could be the name for a really nifty Hice-starring reality show on Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network.
First up, I’ll volunteer to be Hice’s Muslim friend. I’m happy introduce him to a bunch of people named Mohammed and Rania. Maybe we’ll grab a falafel and smoke an apple-flavored hookah. I can take him to Dearborn, Michigan or Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, where he can meet a lot of hardworking Muslim folks who work hard, contribute to this country, pay their taxes, serve in our military, and make a good life for themselves and their families.
Next up, gays. My cousin John Cannizzaro is gay but not Muslim, which is kind of a shame, because then he could take up two slots. John kindly offered to take Hice to see that the “gay plot” has nothing to do with “recruiting” children, but with equal rights. As an added bonus, John is neither violent nor a liar, so maybe he can help Hice there, too.
And finally my friend Katie Klabusich, who is unmarried and therefore doesn’t need her husband’s consent, graciously offered to discuss with Hice what women really want in terms of rights. Katie also escorts women who are entering reproductive clinics, and wants to dissuade Hice from the notion that she is a fan of Hitler and the Nazis. Or Pol Pot, for that matter.
I’m really hoping Hice takes us up on the offer. If he does, maybe then he will even offer me a signed copy of his book. I’ll of course offer to pay the $3.03, assuming he agrees to sign my Kindle.