The negative reaction to Mike Huckabee's criticism of Beyoncé and the parenting skills of President Barack Obama has been fast and fierce, but some believe the backlash could actually benefit the potential Republican presidential candidate by drawing liberals and progressives into a cultural debate.
"Saying you like someone’s music but don’t consider her role model material doesn’t make someone a 'hater' or a radical conservative extremist," writes Daily Beast columnist Keli Goff.
"And when those on the left attack someone for expressing a common-sense opinion on cultural issues it just makes progressives look more extreme and out of touch, particularly to those Americans who may support the President’s efforts to provide economic relief to the middle class but may also take some 'conservative' positions, like believing that marriage is better for children and families than out-of-wedlock births, or that our culture has become too hyper-sexualized," Goff writes.
"Believing that little girls deserve a role model who keeps her clothes on and doesn’t build a career predicated on sex is not a right-wing or conservative position," she adds.
Luring liberals into a defense of the singer's sexualized lyrics was Huckabee's goals, says Bloomberg political reporter David Weigel.
“You all do realize that Huckabee is TRYING to beat east coast elite types into making the Case for Beyonce. You’re not scoring on him," Weigel tweeted
While his comments may appeal to social conservatives, others believe Huckabee's remarks hurt not only him, but also Republican efforts to reach out to African-Americans.
"While Republicans like Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky talk about the importance of reaching out to African-Americans, Huckabee may have reached a new low in terms of offending them," said CNN contributor Ruben Navarrette
Navarrette said the comments crossed the line because "you can critique the other side's policies all day long but you should really skip the parenting advice since it's one thing to accuse someone of being a bad president, and quite another to say they're a bad parent."
The former Arkansas governor has not backed away from remarks he has made while promoting "God, Guns, Grits, and Gravy,"
the book in which Huckabee called Beyoncé’s sexually charged lyrics “mental poison,” and criticized President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama for permitting their daughters to listen to her music.
"I don't understand how, on one hand, they can be such doting parents and so careful about the intake of everything — how much broccoli they eat and where they go to school, and making sure they're kind of sheltered and shielded from so many things.
"And yet they don't see anything that might not be suitable for either a preteen or a teen in some of the lyrical content and choreography of Beyoncé," said Huckabee in a recent interview with People magazine
During an appearance on Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,"
Huckabee said the point of his criticism is that Beyoncé "does not have to be vulgar to set a trend."
He added that no parent would tell a child that "if you make really good grades, one day we will get you your own stripper pole."
Stewart countered by accusing Huckabee of having a double standard on culture issues, airing footage of Huckabee playing bass with rocker Ted Nugent on his old Fox News show.
"You excuse that type of crudeness because you agree with [Mr. Nugent’s] stand on firearms. You don’t approve of Beyoncé because she seems alien to you," Stewart said.
Huckabee, who left his Fox show after six years to explore a presidential run, said that Nugent's songs were intended for adults, but today, "we have a very different kind of depiction and things that are considered perfectly OK for kids."
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.