In my last post, I was exasperated by the demands for denouncing Ann Coulter or Bill Maher or whatever other entertainer is exaggerating to make a point. After reading the comments to this post by Bob Krumm titled Where Are All The Hate-mongering Christo-fascist Theocrats, it's still obvious people don't get it.
Ann Coulter, Bill Maher, The Dixie Chicks, Cindy Sheehan, Shawn Hannity, Jane Fonda, Rush Limbaugh, and all the entertainers in Hollywood are not elected officials. They represent no entity besides their own fat bank accounts. They will pay the price financially if they scoot too far over the line as The Dixie Chicks learned. They are free to speak. They are free to express themselves and you and I are free or not to buy what they are selling. Period.
Why in Sam Hill should I be compelled to denounce or defend any one of these people?
Entertainers are given way too much credit for swaying opinion or representing opinion these days. The Hollywood establishment and media creations like Cindy Sheehan (exploited until she could be of no further use to the Left) are just regular Joes with California-sized egos and no one actually gives a damn what they think. As Al Gore is learning (I hope), from the recent back-lash about his moralistic preaching, regular Americans don't like being preached at by pompous, self-important, vacuous, hypocritical, dull-witted superstars. You do your business, Hollywood, we'll do ours. Same for you, Al. You're not elected king of anything.
As for the radio personalities that so stick in the Left's craw (mostly because these guys succeed at a medium the Left just can't get the hang-of, mostly because shrieking anger sounds shrieky and angry and unpleasant and unfunny to listen to without the benefit of all the silly facial contortions), they too, are entertainers. For those who say Rush and Sean are hate-mongers, I just laugh. Please. That's just so much projection. The problem with taking snippets, especially from Rush (who I've listened to since 1991 and who I've listened to less since blogging, I'm just less interested), is that the listener often misses the point. He uses wit and satire and he, too, gets boggy and irritating when angry. Again, though, these guys are entertainers, first. They use satire and silliness and say things no politician would or should say. They are no different than the Lefts myriad of comedians (who I like, too, by the way), the format is just different.
But the underlying problem here is that the Left wants the entertainers on the Right to shut the hell up. And they want you to shut up. And they want me to shut up. They figure if they cuss, swear, brow-beat, moralize, preach, shame, and generally act offended all the time, the Right will eventually cow-tow. Unfortunately, I see the Right cow-towing.
As Bob Krumm points out:
This past week the pro-gay, pro-choice, twice-divorced Republican from a Northeasten state received just two less votes than the highest vote getter in a straw poll conducted in one of the most conservative Southeastern states. Also, at the American Conservative Union’s CPAC convention over the weekend, this “moderate” candidate, again came in second to a different primary opponent. And when you factor in “second choice” votes, he resoundingly carried the field.How do you figure this? Democrats want to paint Republicans as close-minded barbarians, but I don't know any Republicans who hate gays. I can't even think of any who do, not even among the good-ole-boy red-necks I know. Once again, though, the Left can't wrap its collective juvenile moral thought-process around the notion that someone might disapprove of an action on religious or moral or cultural reasons but still love the person, be friends with him, work with him, be kind to him. What is so difficult to get?
Furthermore, and most importantly, none of these people are elected. Jane Fonda can spout her venom again. More power to her! In fact, I invite her to hang out with Al Qaeda and sit on the end of their rocket launchers for peace. (Oh, that's right, she wouldn't, because they'd slit her throat on camera for propaganda. That's not nearly as much fun as posing for cameras on a tank that kills Americans.) She's an idiot. And I am free to say she's an idiot. And she is free to try and prove me wrong. She actually hurts the anti-war cause and I hope she keeps on blabbing.
In this country, we are free to speak. For all the concern about wire-tapping, I don't see nearly enough concern for speech censoring. It must stop. So while I might disagree with Ann or Bill, I say, keep opening your big yaps. The edges of the debate, these "dangerous people" (to whom?) must speak. I don't want ANY speech censored. What I find is that the censoring gets directed at conservatives more often. Now, why would that be?
So there won't be any denouncing here. I don't care if Ann Coulter is a homophobic hater. I don't care if Bill Maher is a self-loathing middle-aged white guy with murderous fantasies. I really, really don't care.
I do care if an elected official takes his position so lightly that he makes similar comments in an infantile attempt at laughs. I do care if an elected official hires hate-spewing bloggers--I'm left to assume they do speak for him who could speak for America. I do care if an elected official denounces his own country on foreign soil. I do care if an elected official commits crimes and gets a pass because he's the "right persuasion". (And by persuasion, I mean Democrat.)
You see, elected officials represent Americans and in some situations, they represent all of America. I don't have a say in whether Barney Frank or John Edwards or John Kerry or William Jefferson get elected, other Americans do, and I trust their choices. I figure these men do represent these Americans. So I do figure other Americans should denounce them, or write in to complain, or vote them out. That's how the process works.
Otherwise, the speech police are the ones who need to shut up and let the market-place of ideas self-correct. It's always worked before. It will work now, too.
Updated: Betsy Newmark says this:
Geesh, how infantile can you get? It's not funny. There is no essential wit there - just a demeaning homophobic insult. There are so many ways to ridicule John Edwards and she just displayed her own weakness at biting political commentary by not making a humorous play on any of the real reasons why conservatives dislike Edwards.I agree with Ed Morrissey that Ann Coulter's remarks were inappropriate at CPAC, but I don't agree with this statement: "At some point, Republicans will need to get over their issues with homosexuality." What issue exactly? I don't get it. Until and unless a good chunk of Republicans give up their, what, antiquated, notion that the Bible is God's written word, homosexuality will have to be relegated to that nuanced place where we love the sinner but hate the sin. This is an issue no different than adultery, fornication, pornography, abortion, and all other forms of sexual sin. It is an issue for Bible-believing Republicans because it is an issue for God. How do we "get over" that? Accept secular humanist, agnostic dogma as the truth? That's substituting one religion with a few restrictions by God for another religion where no one is safe from sin--just watch the Left run around trying to be good enough for Gaia.
And this is what I mean about being lectured about appropriate speech. Amanda Marcotte represented a Presidential hopeful once she became Edward's blogger. Who does Ann Coulter represent? She is an entertainer. She is a professional pundit who comes up with cutting one-liners illuminating the absurd who is invited on TV for her entertainment value. I'm guessing the CPAC did the same thing? And am I supposed to be offended by her because Democrats will think that I'm a gay-hater? Well, they can kiss my arse. I don't care what they think. And if the muddled middle is too unsophisticated to get it either, and continues to vote for dull-witted Democrats, maybe we, as a country, get what we deserve. The only argument against her stupid speech is that it distracts from the real issues of the day, but that's just more of the MSM and Democrats in general trying to control the dialogue, isn't it? They're succeeding. My, my what a sensitive country we've become.
And, what about entertainers who humiliate the President right in front of him? Free speech, right? Not hateful, right? And would everybody be happy if Ann gets rehabilitated ála Isaiah Washington? And should Democrats denounce him? Where's the denouncing? I want denouncing!
And yes, I'm sick of the Right being painted as gay-hating Neanderthals, but I am far more disgusted with all the fretting and general navel-gazing about saying offensive words and ideas. We will pay BIG TIME for the tight little politically correct circle we draw for ourselves. We'll all end up so righteous and enclosed we'll be surviving on each other's CO2 emissions. Sheesh!