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Friday, April 01, 2005

Words and Political Wrestling

For all the verbal and political wrangling that has gone on for the last few weeks, I have to give majorly-huge amounts of credit to the political Left for being so tolerant and respectful of people who "erred on the side of life" when it came to the entire Terri Schiavo deal, and of discourse in general.

April Fools.

Something that has been percolating at the back of my mind the last few days is a distinct lack of respect the Left has had for those who have a different opinion of them - coming out full bore within the last week. Not once has someone had the stones to come to this blog and give their own opinion and argument for or against Terri Schiavo's feeding tube being removed (despite my leaving this site address in all comments at all blogs I comment in, and I'm not the kind of person to just delete comments because I don't agree with someone), but instead I get sniped by a commenter like this at another blog, who don't bother to argue the case with me here, but instead just sort of wave me and others off as being some sort of "fly off the handle" type of person. He just conveniently ignores the fact that I was angry about someone being starved to death like some sort of second (or third) class citizen, and labels me as someone who is a knee-jerk reactionary flamethrower. Wow, you are remarkably astute. Naturally, he expects to have gotten away with it too, thinking I wouldn't take him to task for that later on in that thread (surprise!). Not surprisingly, he still hasn't commented once on anything here.

What is really vexing is the largely shoddy press coverage, and their own hand-waving label-making, is getting a complete pass by a lot of people. As Michelle Malkin points out, the Media seems to think that people who support the ideals of living and of having a moral society are these rather quaint, pre-packaged little novelties. In their classic Lazy-As-Hell reporting, they sloppily paint a few people with a couple of screws loose as being part and parcel of an entire movement. Yup, they're just so quaint, those Christers, with their whole "right to life" and "respect life" crazy Rovian-esque mantra. The only time I've ever seen a liberal respect life was when a Republican was looking to fight terrorism. "We must respect the sovereignty and the lives of that country!" they hem and haw, "What right do we have to force a dictatorship to play by the rules it agreed to?" Good heavens, stop the presses! A Republican has the temerity to demand that a dictatorship play by the rules it had agreed to play by! Good grief, and then they have the cahones to request that a federal court give a serious look at a "right to die" case and see if the evidence was clear and convincing, and that the standards of law had been applied correctly! What the hell is up with them - fighting terrorism, and for the cause of living? Yet I don't see reality divorcees like PETA members being painted as quaint or as pre-packaged hilarity while they run around in lettuce leaves to protest, I don't know, bug zappers or something. Heaven forbid they adopt a well-reasoned platform for their ideas - lettuce is a hell of a lot more cheaper to acquire and cardboard and Sharpie markers are plentiful.

I somehow don't think you can be considered anything other than a childish inarticulate idiot when you throw salad dressing in the face of someone with whom you disagree strongly. I mean, wow, what are you going to do next? Write some more cookie-cutter political slam poetry? I so live in fear of your stylin' rhymes, whenever you're not ripping them off of someone else. It amazes me that the level of discourse for some has boiled down to soundbites, slam poetry, and sight gags - like some sort of horrible human bee-hive of blithering insanity and gotcha moments. Nobody wants to argue about the merits of a cause or a big case, they just want to lash out at things, then others chortle to themselves like nerds in a basement. These people can't handle being adults, so they throw tantrums like children when things don't go their way. It makes me seriously wish there was a way to administer a maturity test at 16, 18, and 21 to see if everyone is ready to wear their Big Boy/Girl Pants, or if they should maybe stay away from the roads, alcohol, and each other, lest they have a scuffle in the sandbox over those big bad politicians. I outgrew being a smug asshole the day after 9/11 because I was one of the few that realized that I had it unbelievably good in my life (as my parents, correctly, insisted I did) prior to then, and that I and others would need to work hard to preserve that kind of life and eliminate the ones that wanted to violate it. I stopped having time to play gotcha games with people who didn't want to grow up, they wanted to stay a kid and be in this coccoon of No New Ideas Allowed, giving them license to be petulant and smug.

I mean, do you really think you're being clever by being a major-league asshole here?

(hat tip

That isn't even an argument, that is a leftist being like a snarky twelve year old. Yet, were a right-winger to do something similar, or even less so, it's like they called their target a sad-sack-sonofabitch who kicks puppies and is therefore an effigy of an entire movement. "Burn the Brownshirted Witch!" they'd cry.

But hey, comparing a President to Adolf Hitler is just so fashionably chic, who needs to argue like a high-brow human being, with all those troublesome premises and facts and evidence? Oh, I don't know, people who spend more time fashioning a cogent argument that's longer than two lines on a t-shirt? Someone who really does have an opinion, and wouldn't mind (and would most likely welcome) a reasoned debate with someone who is open to ideas and doesn't operate on the fumes of Groupthink? I have yet to find someone on campus or elsewhere that can go for more than five minutes without saying "idiot", "moron", or "stupid" in a description of someone or their political ideals.

Instead it was a lot of acrimony and, frankly, frighteningly shallow and callous attitudes towards the plight of a woman who had to die of starvation and dehydration. How is it tolerant and progressive when the ones that claim to be tolerant otherwise are holding up signs with another "Oh ho! Gotcha now, Dubya!" type message? How is it "progressive" to let a judicial decision otherwise kill a woman by starving her? What kind of "progress" is letting the judiciary take a step backwards into barbarism? Do they even know what it means to be progressive any more?

More importantly, will they ever learn to be that way again?