Every once in a while Americans need reminding about their political class. Most politicians and pundits are bad, and most of us know that. But sometimes it takes an special event or moment to realize just how bad and dumb some of them truly are.
Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum provided a perfect one earlier today.
CNN's Rick Santorum: "We birthed a nation from nothing. I mean, there was nothing here. I mean, yes we have Native Americans but candidly there isn't much Native American culture in American culture" pic.twitter.com/EMxOEYDbg7
— Jason Campbell (@JasonSCampbell) April 26, 2021
Speaking before a conservative youth organization, Santorum said that America was “birthed from nothing” before tacitly acknowledging the existence of Native Americans. He made sure to add, though, that “there isn’t a lot of Native American culture in American culture.” There’s no reflection on why this might be, or even a passing thought at his own ignorance. Santorum just bulled through it on his way to making a dumb point about pilgrims coming to America to freely practice religion and something about education and honestly … who gives a shit? Nothing else he said mattered at all.
The comment is so obscenely stupid and racist it almost doesn’t seem real. He even manages to dog whistle The Birth of a Nation, the infamous early 20th century movie about the Ku Klux Klan. That someone this historically obtuse once held elected office is an indictment of the entire American system of governance. Santorum isn’t a senator anymore, thankfully. But as the tweet above notes, he is a senior political correspondent for CNN. You might remember him cosplaying as the network’s Reasonable Republican during election season. Trying to rationalize Donald Trump’s batshit election challenges is one thing, and Santorum wasn’t very good at it. It seems like bloviating about white supremacist hagiographies to make a point about the importance of getting a Christian education is more his speed.
There are already calls for CNN to fire Santorum. Those will likely get louder as the hours wear on. CNN might follow through because of internet pressure, but functionally they don’t care about this. They knew exactly who Santorum was before they hired him. There are countless videos chronicling his regressive, offensive views on homosexuality, climate change, and countless other issues where he’s so wrong it hurts. None of that was bad enough to put stop them from putting him on their air. This video belongs at the top the pile.