I’ve been impressed with Representative Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee) ever since he caught my attention when he introduced legislation for the United States of America to apologize for its involvement in, and support for, slavery and the Jim Crow laws that followed. The bill passed in 2008. Though it does not heal the traumatic wounds and does not repair the damage, it was a start. Both the House and Senate apologized for America’s complicity in slavery and Jim Crow. This movement, limited in its impact as it was, was led by Rep. Cohen.
Today came the news that the 63-year old congressman had tweeted a message to a 24-year old Texas woman, a so-called “bikini model“, during President Obama’s State of the Union Address, including the acronym “ilu” standing for “i love you”. The Tennessee Republican Party‘s executive director quickly issued a news release comparing Cohen to former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, who resigned n 2011 after tweeting lewd pictures of himself.
Turns out that the woman in question, Victoria Brink, is Cohen’s daughter. He learned of his paternity three years ago. It looks to me like he’s done everything right since he found out, including respect for his daughter, respecting the privacy of her mother and the man who raised her; the man she’s always known as her father.
Well done, Rep. Cohen. Shame on you, Tennessee Republican’s who were so quick to jump to the absolutely wrong conclusion.