Principal Richard "Dick" Vernon will have his hands full Saturday when congressional Republicans will be forced to serve detention in the library of Shermer High School for their immature and barbaric behavior this week. Vernon has already put out a statement that if their unruly behavior persists under his watchful eye on Saturday, they'll "get the horns.” He added that congressional Republicans will have exactly eight hours and 54 minutes to think about why they are there and to ponder the error of their ways.
While the above is farcical, the truth is that the error of the ways of Marjorie Taylor Greene, Kevin McCarthy, Tennessee Rep. Tim Burchett, and Oklahoma Sen. Markwayne Mullin this week dwarfs, by a mile, the inappropriate conduct of the brain, the athlete, the basket case, the princess, and the criminal. To begin with, Greene is no princess. In her unending quest to dehumanize, misgender, and deadname Assistant Secretary for Health Adm. Rachel Levine, Greene recently introduced one of her mindless amendments. She wants to "castrate" Levine’s salary for "castrating children who suffer from gender dysphoria," Greene posted on X. Then, misgendering Levine, Greene declared the health official "shouldn’t even receive $1 of taxpayer money."
By now we should be immune to Greene's intolerable behavior, but we shouldn’t be because it’s extremely damaging. I hesitated to even repeat what she said, but I did so with the intent of calling out words — and even her actions — that have the consequence of fueling the hate for trans people, not to mention putting Adm. Levine in the crosshairs of that hate.The fact that X even allows this disgusting dialogue is akin to selling a gun to a mentally disturbed individual. Greene taking shots on X gives license to others to take verbal shots at Levine, who already endures an overwhelming amount of venom. Further, Greene’s spite provides incentive for others to spit hate at the trans community. The fact that she isn’t censored, expelled, or at the very least given detention is abominable. Her barbarism only proves that decorum in the House is dead. Greene makes Ally Sheedy’s "basket case" look like a refined socialite.
Decorum in the Senate is also on its way to the graveyard. Last month, Missouri’s warped and wimpy (the infamous sprint away from protesters on January 6) Josh Hawley went after Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, ridiculously accusing his department of anti-Semitism. Mayorkas let Hawley have it, reminding the mouth-agape senator that he was the son of a Holocaust survivor. But Hawley was outdone this week when far-far-right Sen. Mullin challenged Teamsters President Sean O’Brien to a fight during a Senate committee hearing. Mullin read one of O’Brien’s tweets about the senator, calling him a clown and fraud. “Quit the tough guy act in these Senate hearings. You know where to find me. Anyplace, anytime cowboy,” O’Brien’s tweet read.Then the following exchange between the two men occurred: “Sir, this is a time, this is a place. You want to run your mouth, we can be two consenting adults, we can finish it here,” Mullin bloviated.
“OK, that’s fine. Perfect,” O’Brien said.
“You want to do it now? Stand your butt up, then,” Mullin puffed.
“You stand your butt up,” O’Brien responded.
'Stand your butt up': Sen. Markwayne Mullin nearly brawls with Teamsters presidentyoutu.be
Then Mullin rose as if to fight the union leader when committee Chairman Bernie Sanders — no shrinking violet — acted as the voice of reason. He had to remind Mullin that he was a United States senator. But what does that mean anymore with dopes and jagoffs -- quoting a real senator, John Fetterman – like Tommy Tuberville, Tom Cotton, and Ron Johnson?
You might think that I’m going to liken Mullin to Judd Nelson’s criminal character, but you’d be wrong. My guess is that when push comes to shove, Mullin would cower like Anthony Michael Hall's Brian character.
Finally, as if there weren’t enough proverbial elbows being thrown on Capitol Hill, one was allegedly thrown by none other than former House Speaker McCarthy, who, in only nine months, destroyed any tidbit of decorum in the House. Burchett, who voted to oust McCarthy from the speaker’s chair, claimed that McCarthy elbowed him after a House GOP meeting this week. "He just elbowed me in the kidneys. ... It was deliberate. It was just a cheap shot," he said.
McCarthy, of course, denied it — he’s never been culpable for anything in his life. And continuing the epidemic of toxic masculinity in the halls of Congress, he said, "If I would hit somebody, they would know I hit them.”
I would surmise that Emilio Estevez’s athlete would double over with laughter after hearing McCarthy’s banal bravado. And since the holidays are approaching, my guess is that a tussle between Burchett and McCarthy would be a redux of Ralphie’s fight with Farkus from A Christmas Story. Two children getting muddied up.
I feel bad now that I’ve diminished the brilliance of a film like The Breakfast Club by comparing it to the bumbling GOP buffoons of Congress. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been a sequel to the John Hughes classic, but the same cannot be said about the GOP buffoons. Their never-ending clown show keeps churning out remake after sequel after remake.
The other difference between the film and the likes of Greene and Mullin is that the GOP cast of misfits grows each week. Is it that they just can’t control themselves, or is there something more at stake here? Why do they continually feel the need to outshock each other? Well, the answers are obvious. They are all pining for five minutes on Fox and a segment on Newsmax. The more disobedient and disobeyed they are, the more their poll numbers climb with the base.
This won’t be the last week that Republicans in Congress serve detention. Next year during the election, there will be overflow crowds in the Shermer High School library. It would behoove GOP members of congress to heed the sage advice of Principal Vernon: “You ought to spend a little more trying to do something with yourself and a little less trying to impress people.”
John Casey is senior editor of The Advocate. Views expressed in The Advocate’s opinion articles are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the views of The Advocate or our parent company, equalpride.