United States Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who in an argument received a sexist slur by a colleague has rejected his apology on the floor of congress. The NY Democrat took to the House floor to accuse him of hurling a profane slur at her on Monday. The Latina who is often on receiving end from Republicans said the words showed a “pattern” of unacceptable behavior by men. The Republican Ted Yoho, the alleged abuser has denied the claim and has appealed for civility.
“This issue is not about once incident. It is cultural,” she told lawmakers, describing it a culture “of accepting a violence and violent language against women, an entire structure of power that supports that.”
She added that she was prepared to shrug of the scene that happened on the steps of the US Capitol but changed her mind when the Republican lawmaker offered excuses by dragging his wife and daughters in a speech on Wednesday.
According to Ocasio-Cortez, she was joining a congress session for a vote when the fellow lawmakers, Ted Yoho and Roger Williams from Florida and Texas grouped with her as they departed the chamber.
She said he called her “disgusting” and said “you are out of your freaking mind” in what a reporter who was present at the site described the incident as a short but “heated exchange” following the recent comments made by Ocasio-Cortez about the direct relationship between crime and poverty. The lady – a member of the self-styled “squad” of young female Democrats said she told him he was being “rude” to which he walked away hurling audible profanity heard by the reporters closed to him.
Meanwhile, Yoho’s office denies the claim that Cortez was subjected to verbal abuse while maintaining that he had exclaimed “bullshit” to himself instead as he walked away from the unpleasant encounter.
The Speech of NYC Congresswoman
In a fiery speech on Thursday, the lady lawmaker denounced Yoho’s apology issued a day earlier for the “abrupt manner of the conversation” with the Democrat colleague and said he was very careful while conversing to the opposite gender as he is a husband and a father of daughters.
“I will commit to each of you that I will conduct myself from a place of passion and understanding that policy and political disagreement be vigorously debated with the knowledge that we approach the problems facing our nation with the betterment of the country in mind and the people we serve,” Mr. Yoho told his colleagues. “I cannot apologize for my passion or for loving my God, my family and my country,” he added.
“Mr. Yoho mentioned that he has a wife and two daughters,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, 30, said on Thursday. “I am two years younger than Mr. Yoho’s youngest daughter. I am someone’s daughter too. My father, thankfully, is not alive to see how Mr. Yoho treated his daughter.”
“I am here because I have to show my parents that I am their daughter and that they did not raise me to accept abuse from men,” she continued.
“When you do that to any woman, what Mr. Yoho did was give permission to other men to do that to his daughters,” she added. “In using that language, in front of the press, he gave permission to use that language against his wife, his daughters, women in his community, and I am here to stand up to say that is not acceptable.”
“I want to be clear that representative Yoho’s comments were not deeply hurtful or piercing to me,” she added. “Because I have worked a working-class job.
“I have waited tables and I have ridden the subway. I have walked the streets in New York City. And this kind of language is not new.
“I have encountered words uttered by Mr. Yoho and men uttering the same words as Mr. Yoho while I was being harassed in restaurants. I have tossed men out of bars that have used language like Mr. Yoho’s.”
“This issue is not about one incident. It is cultural,” she said, calling it a culture “of accepting a violence and violent language against women, an entire structure of power that supports that”.