Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Agents of Change? or Agents of Hate?

As I watched the news and then read some more news online I was thoroughly shocked by what I saw at the Palin rally in Florida. It was not the rhetoric, no, I am used to that from politics in general regardless of the candidate or the party. All though there is no doubt Palin has elevated that to a whole new level. It was not the false accusations or the exaggerated half-truths that shocked me...once again that is nothing unusual from this campaign on either side. All though, once again, Palin has managed to ratchet that practice up a little as well. No the politics, the partisanship, the rhetoric, none of that really shocked me or surprised me for after all, thee is nothing new about any of that.

What shocked me was the yells from the crowd. Someone yelled "Treason!", another yelled "Terrorist!" while even one went so far as to say "kill him". And to see Palin just smile and laugh was shocking and disconcerting. This is totally amazing and shocking to me. "KILL HIM"??? Especially based on accusations that the very article she claims to have read totally debunks. The accusations of terrorist and of treason are accusations that make it clear that the McCain campaign have determined that if they do not win, they will polarize the American people to such a point that the next man will not be able to fulfill his duties effectively. In essence, they are going down so they will drag him down with them.

Make no mistake, these are serious accusations. We are not talking about simple misconduct, w are not talking about adultery. We are talking about treason. We are talking about this man being THE enemy. If there is even a grain of truth to what they accuse we are talking about a man that should be in Guantanamo Bay! We are not talking about a US Senator, a US Presidential Candidate; we are talking about THE enemy. IF there were a grain of truth to what they are saying, then it would be TREASON to vote for this man. It all hinges on IF there were a grain of truth. But there is not. It has been made clear by multiple investigations that there is no political connection, no affiliation, and no ideological resemblance between the actions of these two men. They are not friends, pals, co workers, fellow activists. They are two people in the same town, working in community politics to make education work for our kids. This is nothing more than simple McCarthyism at work. This is fear and hate at its best (or worse).

What Palin has done is bring hate and “the mob” into the political landscape. That people applaud her actions is a sad commentary on our times. Neither candidate is innocent. Both candidates have practiced the “smear campaign” tactic. But people, lets ratchet it back a moment and seriously consider where this is leading! The truth is slapping people in the face. They have to know the truth. Ok…call him a socialist if you want to. You don’t approve of his economic plan or his health care, you feel that what he proposes is socialism, fine call him a socialist. I don’t care. That is political. That is centered around the issues, whether it is appropriate or not does not matter.

What I see, sadly, is an elder statesman, a man that has served our country both in his military service as well as civil service. McCain has served our country well. Politics aside, that is the simple truth. He deserves the respect and honor that comes with that service. I see, however, this warrior, this self proclaimed “maverick” letting the tone be set by a bitch dog that needs a damn good rabies shot! She is foaming at the mouth, spewing hate and division and he is allowing it. He is as guilty as she is. By allowing such hate and not condemning it, he is condoning it.

I am disappointed that Obama rose to the bait. I must admit that. I understand why. I also understand that if he had not replied as he did he would have been seen as weak and not able to defend himself much less the country. But I am still saddened by it. I also think it is quite clear from anybody with half of a brain that Palin (the McCain camp) made the first shot and made it necessary. Cindy McCain accused Obama of carrying the “nastiest campaign in American history” yet conveniently forgot who made the first low blow.

When it is all said and done, it is our country that makes me sad the most. There was a time when a man’s service in the armed forces was respected. There was a time when a Senator of 20+ years was respected based solely on his years of service, and recognized as a statesman. There was a time when a man that had risen so far in the political landscape was respected and it was understood that while his platform was not one you agreed with he was still an American and we Americans take care of our own. What I see is politics polarizing our country to such a point that McCain’s service, while it does not mean he is qualified, or even MORE qualified for the White House than Obama, is still something worth respecting and honoring. I see politics polarizing our country to the point that our leaders can smile and laugh while their opponent’s life is verbally threatened and not say a word of rebuke.

Ultimately, when the dust clears how will either of these men even be able to face the American people? So Obama wins…he goes to the White House…and some dumb ass, after seeing his country endangered by this “terrorist” is going to see it a completely justifiable act to assassinate the man that the American people have voted to office because they could see beyond the rhetoric and the blatant lies. And will Palin and her crass radical followers hail the assassin as a true Patriot? What then? When all the hate and lies come to fruition, will McCain clap his hands and sing “Shoot, Shoot, Shoot the terrorist Obama”? Will the radical right go to church Sunday morning and thank God that the “terrorist” was killed and our country is now safe again? Can you not see where this leads us? Where the logical outcome is?

My god people…what has happened to us? Where have we lost it? When did we forget what it truly means to be an American? When did we lose sight of the fact that we have differences, we have opposing views but we have a mutual cause and a shared loyalty? When did we get so lost that our leaders applaud and accept hate and a violent resolution to our political landscape? “Kill him”? For shame, for shame.



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