Sacha Baron Cohen Who Is America Episode 2

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Sacha Baron Cohen Who Is America Episode 2

Jason Spencer should absolutely not have a job today. In the second episode of Sacha Baron Cohen’s Showtime series Who Is America? the Republican lawmaker screams the N-word and runs around with his pants down, trying to touch Cohen’s character with his bare ass to turn him gay. It’s horrifying. It’s disgraceful. The people of Georgia should be ashamed for electing this man four times, Republicans should be ashamed for working with this man, we should all be ashamed for living in a country where this man has any sliver of political power. That’s not all this guy does either—he practices looking up Muslim women’s burkas for bombs, he pretends to chop the penis off a Middle Eastern man.

It’s sick. Truly sick.

Before Episode One of Cohen’s disturbing new show even aired, Republicans have made pathetic preemptive excuses for the things they’ve done on Who Is America?. Spencer, a Georgia state representative, has been among them, quietly attempting to defend his own actions. Spencer told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he thought this was a real training video for “elected officials who may be targeted by terrorists” and that during a “kidnapping scenario” he was “repeatedly asked to shout provocative language.”

“It is clear the makers of this film intended to deceive me in an attempt to undermine the American conservative political movement,” he said, adding that he has “sought legal counsel.”

Let’s for a second consider the idea that Spencer was tricked, that the brilliant minds behind Who Is America? manipulated a good, God-fearing man into doing and saying things he would never otherwise do or say. Even if that’s the case, Spencer is way too stupid to be an elected official. Hell, he’s too stupid to clean a bathroom.

But we know for a fact that a man like Spencer isn’t someone duped into doing and saying horribly racist things. He’s a man who once proudly threatened a black Democratic lawmaker for condemning his beloved Confederate monuments. Thankfully, he recently lost his primary election after four terms in office.

If this was a normal country, his fate would be secured. This man would be run out of office before the end of his term, but what’s depressing about all of this is how unlikely it is that there will be any immediate fallout. There’s been little to no backlash after last week’s episode, in which multiple lawmakers endorsed—on camera—teaching boys and girls to be armed child soldiers. Cohen is revealing the violent, racist, evil heart of America, but the problem with his show in general is that we already know this. Republicans wear it on their sleeves.

We know this country is hallowed out and rotten, and it’s almost depressing seeing it in action so shamelessly. But it’s also satisfying to see these men exposed for who they really are without any theatrics or rhetoric.

Elsewhere in the episode, Cohen poses as a hyper liberal introducing the plans for a new mosque in a small, rural Arizona town. He’s greeted with blatant racism, hatred, and one man saying that’s worse than having n-words in town.

There are five more episodes left—including one with Sarah Palin. And I’m exhausted, so exhausted and heartbroken and sick. Cohen isn’t going to change any Republican minds with this. If they watch this show at all, they’ll only see a liberal Hollywood elite taking advantage of honest Americans. What, if anything, is Cohen trying to change? That’s up to people horrified by what they’re seeing.

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