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Manifest Destiny

Last night, someone tweeted, “Thanks to the two The View hosts walking off the set because of Bill O’Reilly’s comment, the Democrats just took two steps backward.” I winced at the stupidity buttered with more stupidity. Later, I snickered on hearing accounts of Sharron Angle’s and Christine O’Donnell’s comments at their respective debates. And then I stopped. We would rather watch our opponents, however legitimately ludicrous they are, take steps backward than move ourselves forward? Is this what being American and winning have come to? Where’s the value? This reminds me of the driver who impatiently and rashly passes your car only to be found waiting at the red light when you slowly pull up alongside. Congratulations, United States of Bucko! You’re the first to a steaming pile of shit!

Where is the generation of value in mid-recession, 21st-century America? Besides on the Buzzword Bingo, that is. I’d like to know.

1 comment… add one
  • Cousin Pat from Georgia October 15, 2010, 11:34 AM

    I haven’t even written a full sentence, and I’m already editing my response to this.

    Every time I’ve spoken with someone about the Great Manhattan Burlington Coat Factory Renovation of 2010, I feel my face flush. My blood pressure spikes. My fist balls up and I want to start breaking things. But doing that would only hurt me, and it would change nothing.

    Walking out is the worst thing that you can do, screaming is the second. This lunacy cannot be confronted by our absence or our rage. It must be confronted with reality and history and a steady cognizance of right and wrong.

    Of all people, Whoopi Goldberg could have destroyed Bill O’Reilly on national television by bringing up the long, storied white Christian tradition of terrorism in this nation; the long, storied ambivalence of the larger white community that allowed it to happen; and the long, protracted fight over the symbol corrupted by that terrorist organization that still exists on state flags on on capital building grounds across the South.

    The Klan used the Rebel Flag as their brand as they murdered, raped, pillaged, tortured and burned their way across the United States for more than a century. Yet we are still arguing the difference between symbolic heritage and hate. The Klan was made up of preachers and congregants who used the Bible to justify their murder, rape, pillage, and torture across the United States for more than a century. Yet churches are everywhere, and the initial reaction to hearing about the history of the Klan is for Christians to distance themselves from the Christian branding of that organization. The Klan directed their murder, rape, pillage, torture and fire against African-American citizens and supporters of civil rights of all races and religions, and the legal ramifications of that reign of terror have only come to an end in my lifetime; the cultural ramifications of that reign of terror have a legacy that affects us even today. The reign of terror lasted so long, and held such sway over society that hundreds of thousands of white Christians participated directly in supporting this terrorist group, and their votes controlled the highest reaches of government in states across this nation. For years. Yet African-American citizens and supporters of civil rights of all races and religions are told to “get over it,” that “the law has changed” and to “stop making excuses.”

    O’Reilly, Gingrich, Palin and the rest of those people want to invoke the twisted religious cult beliefs of 19 criminals and paint an entire religion with it. They want us to associate horrific crimes with people who had no part in those crimes. Then, at the same time, they demand we disinherit our own nation’s history of pervasive Christian terrorism, and disconnect it from the way we demand justice today, and discredit us when we try.

    She could have done all of that, or something completely different and equally valid, and done so with millions of viewers.

    Instead, she got up and walked out of the room.

    And then she’ll wonder why so many people listen only to the lunatics.

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