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As humans, it’s normal to have moments where we misspeak and have our words misinterpreted and possibly taken out of context. It’s bound to happen sooner or later.

But recently, some comments made by some of our most well known politicians have been hard to let slide. Whether they meant it exactly the way they said it, or their words were somehow taken out of context, it’s moments like those that serve as a reminder to always think before we speak.

Representative Steve King has once again been thrown in the spotlight –– and not in a good way –– for a comment he made comparing the criticism he endured for his white nationalist and white supremacist comment to the suffering Jesus endured. His comment led multiple papers like the Des Moines Register to call for his resignation.

Before this recent comment one of the last comments King had received backlash for was a comment in which he seems to have compared Iowans to the victims who endured hurricane Katrina.

During the Town hall meeting on March 21, Rep. King said: "Here's what FEMA tells me: We go to a place like New Orleans and everybody's looking around saying, 'Who's gonna help me, who's gonna help me?' When FEMA responds to problems in Iowa, they're just always gratified when they come and see how Iowans take care of each other,"

When it comes to self-defining comments like those it’s hard to take them back and pretend like what you said was meant to mean something else when it seems to be pretty straightforward.

Another politician who seemed to have made a comment that caused an uproar was Oklahoma state Representative George Faught. A video was recorded in 2017 during a meeting in which the Oklahoma House met to discuss the bill that would prohibit anyone from seeking an abortion with the knowledge of a fetus having a genetic abnormality. In the video, Rep. George Faught was asked if rape was the will of God.

In response Rep. George Faught seems to dodge the question by saying: “[...] If you read the bible there’s actually a couple of circumstances where that happened, and the lord uses all circumstances. I mean, you can get on that path, but you know it’s a reality, unfortunately.”

Although he might’ve not given a straightforward answer to the question, it’s comments like those that caused a bad reaction when the video came out. Sure, he might’ve meant no harm by the comment, but people interpret things in their own way, which leads to the possibility of backlash.

Of course, politicians aren’t the only ones whose comments could be misinterpreted, and even if maybe they simply misspoke and didn’t think before they said the things they said, or actually meant it the way it was interpreted. It doesn’t matter what position you’re in; it is always important to be wary of what you are about to say, because once you say it there is no taking it back.

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Letter to the Editor Submission Link

(5) comments

Steve Gregg

King has a point. During Hurricane Katrina, the mayor of New Orleans sat around in a hotel room in a funk, doing nothing. He snapped out of it only enough to rail against the federal government for not doing anything, when they were doing everything. A fleet of New Orleans school buses was ruined by a flood of salt water when they could have been used to carry people out of the way of the hurricane, saving both people and machines. Afterward, a great many people in New Orleans demanded the government build them new homes, while doing nothing to help themselves. Meanwhile, next door in Mississippi, people rebuilt their own homes and lives, not waiting for the government to save them. They saved themselves.

The same is true of Iowa’s self-sufficient farmers, who manfully take command of their own lives when disaster strikes and help their neighbors, as well. The Iowan culture of independence and responsibility is far superior to the feeble, irresponsible, and dependent culture of New Orleans.

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