Those goofy, right-wing wardrobe police are at it again, getting goofier by the day.

Those goofy, right-wing wardrobe police are at it again, getting goofier by the day.

First came the flag pin flap. The wardrobe cops insist that no politician should go out in public without sporting this mandatory piece of bejeweled patriotism. When Sen. Barack Obama had the integrity to say that his patriotism goes deeper than a flash of bling on his lapel, he was immediately pounced upon by rabid talk-show blathers, bloggers, and other mad dogs of the kooky right. It’s un-American not to wear flag jewelry, they yapped. Recently, though, their yapping turned to yips when Karl Rove appeared on Fox TV – gasp! – with a naked lapel.

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So now the yappers have found another target for their fashion fanaticism: Rachael Ray. Yes, the perky Food Network celebrity is being assailed by the right-wing for promoting Muslim extremism and terrorism. It seems that Ms. Ray appeared in a Dunkin Donuts ad, ostensibly to hype the fast food chain’s iced coffee. But the ever-vigilant rightists saw right through the coffee, frantically pointing to the scarf that Ray was wearing. It has a black-and-white pattern with long white fringe. Aha, shrieked the yappers, that’s a kaffiyeh, the kind of Arab headdress worn by the likes of Yasser Arafat and Muslim suicide bombers.

Don’t you see? yelped the right-wing chorus – Rachael Ray and Dunkin Donuts are not selling coffee, their ad is signaling symbolic support for the Islamic fiends who hate America! We must stop anyone from wearing the dreaded scarf, they yelled.

Never mind that Ms. Ray’s scarf is a paisley design having nothing to do with terrorism, and never mind that Kaffiyehs are warn every day in the Mideast by teachers, workers and others having no connection whatsoever to terrorism – there’s no level of silliness too extreme for the right-wing monitors of wardrobe correctness.

“Accusations about scarf compel chain to pull ad,” Austin American Statesman, May 30, 2008

“This Modern World,” By Tom Tomorrow reprinted in the Austin Chronicle. www.salon.com

“Battling the bastards is about as much fun as you can have with your clothes on.”

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