I’M WRITING THIS before election results on Tuesday night, so I don’t know who is going to be controlling the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, the Iowa House, Senate and Governor’s office and local government.
But it doesn’t matter because this transcends political power…or at least it should.
Unquestionably, this off-presidential year election has been nasty. Lots of name calling, which is nothing new. But there was an all new level of vitriol exhibited by the left-leaning Saturday Night Live last Saturday. In fact it was so bad, a talking head from CNN condemned it.
I really thought we were beyond mocking people for their physical deformities, even though Hillary Clinton’s pant suits were the source of ridicule and cartoonists had a field day with Barack Obama’s ears and Donald Trump’s hair. He was also criticized roundly for the length of his ties.
I’m not sure anyone on either side of the political spectrum will forget Donald Trump suggesting John McCain’s time as a P.O.W. made him a “loser,” even though it was McCain who threw the first punch, mocking Trump as an intellectual lightweight. If you observe Trump carefully you’ll see he almost never throws the first punch, but he is the most vicious counter puncher in U.S. political history.
But there are some things, at least there should be, that are off limits. Trump’s remark about McCain was that.
With the advent of social media and the ability to say stupid, hurtful things immediately, without filter, things are crossing the lines of civility more readily than illegal aliens are crossing our southern border.
Which brings me to SNL “comedian” Pete Davidson mocking Republican House of Representatives candidate from Texas, Dan Crenshaw. Crenshaw is a former Navy Seal who served a butt load of tours in Afghanistan, Iraq and in every hell hole we send Navy Seals and ended his military career by having his left eye blown out by an IED.
Davidson was doing a rife on ugly politicians and came to Crenshaw, who wears an eye patch to cover what plastic surgery couldn’t fix, and compared his looks to a hit man in a porn movie. “I’m sorry he lost his eye in a war…or whatever…” Davidson mocked.
Crenshaw, who, in fact, will be a new Congressman from Texas because he’s just that good a candidate, brushed it off as you know a decorated Navy Seal would. But I can be outraged. I have a dear friend who left part of his soul in Vietnam and has spent his life battling demons he never asked for. When people make the mistake of talking about him in front of me, using all the stereotypical words in describing people battling PTSD or other forms of mental illness, it doesn’t take but a moment to set them straight.
I have another friend with a prosthetic leg and a son-in-law who conquered complete paralysis from a horrible car accident and now walks with an unnatural gate. When they poke fun at themselves, I’ve learned to laugh with them. If someone would poke fun at them in my presence, they would very likely get a poke in the nose.
Mocking a wounded veteran is something I can’t tolerate. I won’t tolerate it. I don’t care how stupid the person is who does the mocking. And yet here we are, being belittled as Midwesterners and people living in rural areas. Obama mocked us as people clinging to our guns and Bibles. Clinton mocked us as irredeemables.
Former conservative TV talking head Megan Kelly lost her job because she stupidly defended a person’s right to wear “black face.” Rosanne Barr lost her job for making a silly observation about the color a person’s skin. Major League Hall of Fame pitcher Curt Schilling lost his job as an ESPN TV analyst because he said homosexuality (according to his religious conviction) was a sin.
Yet Pete Davidson is held without sin. He isn’t even forced to make a fake apology. He shows no remorse because, like many, many progressives and liberals, he feels no remorse. His cause is so pure, he doesn’t have to recognize how stupid he sounds and how hurtful his remarks can be. And NBC clearly goes along because…well, Dan Crenshaw is a faith-based, conservative.
I’m not sure firing people for their outspokenness actually honors our First Amendment or the veterans who defend that right. But I can think of all kinds of ways to punish the unrepentant short of physical violence or firing. The new bumper sticker that has a circle around a Nike swoosh with a line drawn across it is one of the most clever ways to snub the sports apparel manufacturer for its idiotic commercials uplifting Colin Kaepernick’s treason.
I’m still not sure what offends me more about the former 49er’s quarterback. His kneeling for the National Anthem or the pig socks he wore to denigrate law enforcement officers. It’s a delight not to have to think about the mope since he washed out of the NFL.
But I wish things were more balanced in media coverage. In the eyes of liberals and the progressive media, only conservative people can be bigots and spew hate speech. Liberals can say all the crazy crap they want without anyone in the mainstream media questioning them. Young conservatives on college campuses can be shouted down or driven into hiding by the threat of failing grades all the while tenured professors spout hatred toward any sort of thought or speech that challenges the status quo.
It’s not right.
I CAN’T TELL YOU you why President Trump decided to talk about rewriting or completely wiping out the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution by presidential fiat, because it simply can’t be done like that. Even though the amendment has been argued for 150 years about whether it means automatic citizenship for children born of non-U.S. citizens on U.S. soil.
But it’s no different than the talk of taking the teeth out of the First and Second Amendments, watering down our right to free speech, of freedom of religion and of gun rights. The difference apparently is that President Trump is attacking the 14th Amendment and liberals, socialists and progressives are attacking the 1st and 2nd Amendments and they, with the mainstream media’s support, are held unaccountable.
WE’VE GOT A shared government again, which was predictable. It takes a whole lot in an off-year election to control all branches of government. If we’re lucky, President Trump will use the Bill Clinton model, make nice with the Democrat House and get something done for Americans.
If not, well there’s worse things than gridlock in Washington, D.C.
I’m glad Kim Reynolds is our governor. And I’m glad rural Iowa flexed its muscle against the cities and suburbs. Having a governor from the southern Iowa sticks as opposed to a wealthy urbanite, is a good thing.