Ramaswamy Hits Back After Donna Brazile Mispronounces His Name, Tells Him to Go ‘Home’

Mispronouncing the non-English name of a non-white person and telling them to “go home” would be considered wildly racist — unless, of course, the person whose name you’re mispronouncing happens to be Republican. On a recent episode of “Real Time With Bill Maher,” former acting Chair of the Democratic National Committee, Donna Brazile, butchered Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy’s name and suggested he “go home.” “Vivek needs to just shut the hell up and go home. I’m tired of him,” Brazile said, botching the pronunciation of Indian-American entrepreneur Ramaswamy’s name, making it sound like it rhymes with “tech.”

Warning: These video clips contain language that some people may consider offensive. 

Off-screen, former congressman and current senior political commentator for CNN, Adam Kinzinger, who was also a guest on the show, could be heard agreeing, “We all hate Vivek,” similarly mispronouncing Ramaswamy’s name. Host Bill Maher called Brazile out on her mispronunciation, saying, “It’s Vivek,” pronouncing the name accurately. “Well, whatever,” Brazile responded dismissively. Maher pushed back, “Whatever? Would you say that about… uh… other…” “Donna. I’m Donna,” Brazile interrupted as if her own name were somehow exceptional. She continued mocking, “Vivek…is it Vy-vek Ramasama?” The audience burst into laughter. “Ramaswamy?” Brazile went on, proving she could, in fact, pronounce it correctly. “Ramaswamy,” Maher affirmed. “Thank you so much. I learn so much when I come on this show,” Brazile replied facetiously, struggling to hold back laughter and spurring further guffaws from the audience. “Vivek?” she said, pronouncing it correctly. “Vivek needs to go home.” “I agree. I just feel like there’s something wrong with everybody refusing to learn his name,” Maher said. “I just feel there’s a little racism there.” “No racism,” Brazile said. “Vivek, Vivek,” I’ll say it, Kinzinger chimed in, putting his hands up as if surrendering to Maher’s over-the-top request. Kinzinger may want to go back and read an article by CNN, the media outlet he works for, published in 2020. The author of the piece suggests that the persistent mispronunciation or mocking of non-English names in the U.S., despite those individuals’ prominence and accomplishments, such as Vice President Kamala Harris or Google CEO Sundar Pichai, reflects issues of “power and respect.” The article cites Rita Kohli, an associate professor of education at the University of California, Riverside, who says that mispronouncing names “is tied to racism and other forms of oppression.” Kohli argued that Sen. David Perdue’s mispronouncing of then-Sen. Kamala Harris‘ name at a Trump rally amounted to “disrespecting and deprofessionalizing a Black and woman of color vice presidential candidate.” Now imagine if Perdue had mispronounced Harris’ name and then told her to “go home.” Ramaswamy responded to the exchange with humor rather than outrage on X, jokingly wondering what these same people would do “if a white Republican intentionally mispronounced Donna’s name & then told her to return “home.” Ramaswamy was born in America — he is American. But Brazile was clearly making a reference to his ethnicity and country of origin. Had the comment been made by a white person referring to a black or even Middle Eastern person, it would have likely resulted in demands for the resignation of the person who said it. The fact is, some names are hard to pronounce if you come from a different culture, but the left cannot selectively cry racism only when it fits their politics. Fairness demands that they hold themselves accountable to the same ethical standards they preach, if not higher. Donna Brazile and Adam Kinzinger should come out and admit that they were, as the CNN contributor put it, being “malicious” and “evoking the nation’s history of dominant groups forcing new names on people of oppressed groups.” But somehow, I have a feeling that’s not going to happen.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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