Friday, October 15, 2004
The Use of Mary Cheney and the National Conscience
It's becoming difficult not to get angry about the coming election. I'll write about several items below: an ad by Operation Truth, a Democrat flyer about the Special Olympics, the use of Mary Cheney and a Rolling Stone article. The thing is, there isn't any way to judge the anger of the country over these things... all of the people we used to rely on as the arbiters of a just community will not cover these horrid issues because they hurt John Kerry and the Democrats. Does anyone think 60 Minutes will confront the misuse of Down's Syndrome to make fun of Republicans? Does anyone think Nightline will confront the Jayson Blair type lies in the Rolling Stone story? And who believes that we'll wake up to a Today show being critical of using a disabled vet to attack the President in a time of war? No, we have no fair outlet to judge these issues. There is no national conscience anymore...
I saw a political ad for Kerry yesterday that had a disabled vet who had lost part of his right arm in combat. The vet was reciting outright falsehoods as he removed his prosthetic limb and walked away. He says that Bush (They) proclaimed the war would be won and the soldiers would be home soon. Lie. He says the Pentagon only refers to him, "as a number" and don't want to know who he is. Lie. He says Bush (They) told him Iraq was responsible for 9/11. Lie. President Bush all along said the war on Terror would be long and difficult. President Bush has all along said that Iraq, though not responsible for 9/11, had the tools to fuel another 9/11. And the Pentagon and the Administration, by most accounts, are full of honor and respect for the vets of the War on Terror. The ad was despicable.
Update: The ad was by "Operation Truth" and can be seen here.
I read this article today, about John Kerry's use of Mary Cheney in the 3rd debate. If Edwards and Kerry, who both raised Mary Cheney's sexual orientation in the debates, believe there is no downside to throwing her into their mix, they are wrong. Even though, as I said, there is no national conscience, there are countless individual consciences and those individual consciences have friends and family who actually do have to deal with gayness in their lives. Those individual consciences are telling countless people, "I would never do that." Who among us would? Who among us would gossip on national TV about someone else's family? No matter what the local and national news decides to say, a thousand points of conscience just flipped the switch or punched the chad or lit the light for Bush.
Despite, or rather Beyond, the use of Mary Cheney, what really put me over the edge into anger is near the bottom of that article:
In Tennessee, Representative Craig Fitzhugh (who shares his office with the Kerry-Edwards campaign) is distributing anti-Bush flyers featuring Bush's head on the body of someone winning a Special Olympics race. The caption reads, "Voting for Bush Is Like Running In The Special Olympics: Even If You Win, You're Still Retarded."
Click... how many votes for Bush just flipped at that? I don't think I've ever seen a more disgusting idea.
I also read "Bush Like Me," an article in the Rolling Stone magazine. The reporter at the Rolling Stone wants us to believe he went undercover to work on the Bush campaign in Orlando, Florida. Here's a little piece of it when this "undercover" reporter was invited to dinner at another volunteer's home:
I concentrated on my food. Grace was easy: Just hang your head. But once they moved into politics and religion, I began to worry that my silence was becoming conspicuous. Susie was shooting me searching looks. I noticed her husband, the wiry gray-haired dad with the slow voice and the henpecked posture, was watching me whenever I chewed. Like he was checking to see if I would swallow. Finally the discussion switched to the high school one of her sons attended; he had a couple of crazy teachers there, a mean lady and a guy with man-boobs....
"We have a transvestite at our school," I whispered, suddenly inspired.
Susie's husband and older son were still talking about the man-boobs teacher. "Whaddya mean, which one?" the younger said to his dad.
"We have a transvestite at our school," I repeated.
Only Susie heard me. "No!" she screamed. "Did you hear what he said? A transvestite works at his school!" She turned to me in horror. "Is he allowed to dress like a woman?"
Now I had everyone's attention.
"Oh, yeah," I said. "Totally normal guy, except that at some point, he started reading all kinds of . . . "
"Books!" Susie guessed.
"It's called possession," her husband said.
"Yeah, books," I said. "It started . . . he was reading Agatha Christie books at first, then he got really into detectives. Next thing you know, he's reading Nietzsche. You know, the German philosopher."
"The weirdo German!" Susie exclaimed.
Everyone was staring at me in shock.
"And he comes up to me one day and says, you know, 'Well, since there's no God, I might as well be gay!' "
"Oh, my God," her husband whispered.
"And he starts talking like this, and his appearance got more and more strange. . . . He started coming into work in drag. . . . "
"Oh, my God," the husband repeated.
"And his boyfriend would come and pick him up at school. . . ." I went on.
"Oh!" Susie shrieked, scrunching her nose, as though smelling rotting cheese.
"The thing is, I'm the one who gets in trouble," I said. "Like, there was this one little girl. I caught her listening to 50 Cent -- you know, the rapper -- and I started telling her about the torments of hell, and how she'd pay in eternity and all of that. And the principal comes up to me, and he's like, 'Stop, you're scaring the children!' "
"Oh, yeah," Susie snorted.
"And I'm like, 'I'm scaring her? Are you crazy? This girl is seven years old. She needs to know about these things!
You get the drift... the whole article was like that and worse. I believe the whole thing is fiction, made up, invented to make fun of anyone who is Republican, religious, or conservative. I don't believe any of the conversations ring anywhere near true to life. Just look at the leftish cliches in that one small piece above: hatred of gays, too dumb to read books, brainwashing little kids...
And so, I feel as though I have a choice: stop listening and reading or else continue to get angry at all the lies.
In the end, my recourse is my one vote for President Bush.