Sunday, October 11, 2009

Wrong Roads

I read the article in the Sunday Washington Post about Charisse Carney-Nunes who the extreme right wing conservatives attacked her for something she didn't do, and went down the road of misinformation, lies and hate to where they pulled a proverbial Thelma and Louise, except they didn't die because they simply lied again to cover their mistakes and stupidity.

They did exactly what they used to describe this woman, "In a free and republican government, you cannot restrain the voice of the multitude. Every man will speak as he thinks," wrote George Washington, "or more properly, without thinking." Yes, they didn't think before they opened their mouth, their fingers and everything else to show the world just how stupid someone can be when then don't do their homework.

They went down the road of incivilty and didn't even bother to do the basics they teach journalists, like, "Check the facts." Instead they took something about someone else and attributed it to her and then unloaded on her, an innocent woman just going through life like you and I. But what's worse is that they critized the action not of her doing which they themselves value, the right to free speech under the Constitution.

And that what's becoming scary today. The extreme right wing conservatives are hijacking the Constitution for their own agenda, protecting themselves and criticizing, and worse condemning, those who disagree with them. They argue it's their right and then argue we can't disagree, let alone express our view, our right. And then label anyone who doesn't believe their agenda as the extreme opposite, without really listening and understanding.

This isn't new. It's been around since the founding of this country, even our leaders then charged opponents with words and deeds of unspeakable civility, all wrong of course, and past the line of lies and slander. But now with the extensive communications we have today, one word can spread quickly to many people. The ripple effect multiplied orders of magnitude, the chain letter gone awry.

And oh so wrong. The only truth were the names on words. Everything else were lies compounded upon lies, done at the speed of the Internet. This time is hurt someone, which was their intention, except it was the wrong person. The very values they promote to respect and follow were set aside in the name of hate, misplaced, but still hate. And the very value they show with others like them wasn't shown to someone else.

There's words for that, but none fit the Bible or any religious values. The one about caring for others and respects their rights which you value and follow. They accused and then condemend without checking the facts. But we know that's not new with them and new with this situation. They love running down wrong roads with incorrect or inaccurate information, and anyone in the way or in their sights are simply public road kill.

That, however, is not America or being an American, something sadly they don't see. They are their own worst enemy, using fear and hate. But what's worse and sadder, is that it's their own fear and hate reflected back at them. It's not ours nor our response, just pity.

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