Wednesday, December 24, 2014

MKE Co. Sup. Deanna Alexander belittles Eric Garner's final words, makes fool of herself

Alexander's Twitter feed is a case study in ignorant commentary

I usually make it a point not to post things that are too political on the holidays. It being Christmas eve, I had every intention of ignoring politics today and focusing on other things.

The actions of Milwaukee County Supervisor Deanna Alexander, however, cannot be ignored. So with some spare time in hand, it’s worth looking what transpired last night and in days prior on Alexander’s Twitter account (H/T to Capper).

It all stems back to tweets she made earlier this month regarding the #ICantBreathe hashtag that has become popular on the social network. “I can’t breathe,” of course, were the final words of Eric Garner, an African-American male who was choked to death in New York City last summer.

The officer who choked Garner, who was unarmed and not committing any visible crime in the video of his death, was not charged.

In Milwaukee there was a similar incident involving Dontre Hamilton, a black man with mental illness who had been sleeping on a park bench in Red Arrow Park. Hamilton had been checked on by two previous officers who felt no need to bother him. When a third officer improperly searched him a scuffle occurred, which resulted in Hamilton somehow getting the officer’s baton. The officer shot Hamilton 14 times, resulting in Hamilton’s death.

With that context in mind, Alexander’s online comments are all-the-more troublesome. Alexander, who touts herself as a “values-driven” Christian conservative, has some very un-Christian commentary:

Who says stuff like this? The tweet above supposes that Garner’s last words -- “I can’t breathe” -- came from a man who was breaking the law. Garner wasn’t breaking any law at the time he was killed.

These weren’t the only tweets to get attention. Alexander has a handful of tweets and retweets that are discomforting and disrespectful:

Alexander also links to a article which, among other claims, states that “99 times out of 100 in politics, the word ‘racist’ is used purely for political reasons.” Presumably Alexander also believes that, too.

After these tweets went viral for all the wrong reasons, Deanna Alexander, a duly-elected public figure, made her account private, limiting who could see her tweets or access her profile.

Here’s another example, from her own website ( no less:

Weird indeed.

It’s highly disrespectful that Alexander chose to make her profile private, especially since she’s supposedly a public figure in Milwaukee County government. That in itself is troubling enough. She should be accountable to her constituents and anyone else who is concerned with Milwaukee County, and making her profile accessible only to those she approves of is worrisome.

But making light of the last words of a dying man who was wrongly killed in the streets of New York, and disregarding the struggle that African-Americans are facing in this country today, is much, much worse. These are not the actions of a Christian -- Jesus never taught his followers to be snarky and condescending -- and they certainly do not abide by her self-described “values-driven” mantra. Even ignoring her hypocritical actions, it’s downright immoral, ignorant of the facts on the case and a spit in the face to those who are peaceably protesting the actions of some police officers towards African-Americans across the country.

If anyone deserves to get coal tomorrow morning, it would be County Supervisor Deanna Alexander.

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