I will now be joining the new Secretary of Housing and Urban Development as an object of scorn for speaking metaphorically. My metaphor — feed the animals — is a figurative way of saying “arouse the (angry) masses.”
Which is what Dr. Carson did with his metaphor. Which appears in comments he made an introductory speech to staff at the HUD.
In the speech, which praised immigrants to the U.S. who worked long hours to build better lives for their children, he made reference to “other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships [and] worked even longer, even harder for less.”
Carson might have insulated himself from attack by indicating “air quotes” around the phrase other immigrants. It probably wouldn’t have helped, considering the identity of the types who came gunning for him, torches blazing: Think millionaires Whoopee Goldberg and Samuel L. Jackson.
OK!! Ben Carson….I can't! Immigrants ? In the bottom of SLAVE SHIPS??!! MUTHAFUKKA PLEASE!!!#dickheadedtom
— Samuel L. Jackson (@SamuelLJackson) March 6, 2017
Goldberg probably thought she was taking the high road with this tweet of her own:
Ben Carson..please read or watch Roots, most immigrants come here VOLUNTARILY,cant’t really say the same about the slaves..they were stolen
— Whoopi Goldberg (@WhoopiGoldberg) March 6, 2017
Yeah, great idea. Read (or if you happen to be illiterate watch) a fictionalized account of the Middle Passage from a literary work that was largely plagiarized.
According to The Telegraph:
A HUD spokesman later called the tempest “the most cynical interpretation of the secretary’s remarks to an army of welcoming HUD employees. No one honestly believes he equates voluntary immigration with involuntary servitude.”
Tempest? Best be careful with those metaphors. They are easy to misconstrue.