Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has come out swinging after a minor-league baseball team aired a Memorial Day tribute video grouping her with the likes of communist dictators and other "enemies of freedom."
The freshman congresswoman reacted by saying such "hateful messages" provoke a "flood of death threats" against her and questioning "those who believe in 'free speech.'"
What are the details?
During a doubleheader Monday, the Fresno Grizzlies played a patriotic video that was set to the words of the late President Ronald Reagan's 1981 inaugural address. Ocasio-Cortez's image was displayed during a part where the president referred to "enemies of freedom," along with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and deceased Cuban Communist leader Fidel Castro.
The baseball team promptly issued apologies to their fans, community, service members, and the New York Democrat herself.
Ocasio-Cortez responded on Twitter the next day, saying, "What people don't (maybe do) realize is when orgs air these hateful messages, my life changes bc of the flood of death threats they inspire. I've had mornings where I wake up & the 1st thing I do w/ my coffee is review photos of the men (it's always men) who want to kill me."
What people don’t (maybe do) realize is when orgs air these hateful messages, my life changes bc of the flood of de… https://t.co/MgaGQTwedD— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) 1559080847.0
The congresswoman did not address the baseball team, but said "it happens whenever Fox [News] gets particularly aggressive + hateful."
I don’t even get to see all of them. Just the ones that have been flagged as particularly troubling. It happens wh… https://t.co/s1bKntGbBm— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) 1559081016.0
The lawmaker went on to posit the question: "For those who believe in 'free speech': Whose free speech do you believe in?" before asserting that "some folks using free speech to defend racism are also supporting folks passing laws to allow running over protestors."
All of this is to say that words matter, and can have consequences for safety. For those who believe in “free spee… https://t.co/mUi9RiUcxO— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez) 1559081230.0