Glenn Beck and double standards

This time I just have a short thought to share. I don’t want to be too partisan, and I admit I haven’t actually dug through the old news reports, but I’m just surprised no one else seems to be complaining about this. Am I the only one who thinks that, while its really not such a big deal where or when Glenn Beck wants to hold a rally, the real hypocrisy is what he’s calling it?

I mean, maybe trying to piggyback off the emotion MLK invokes is a little tacky, but who’s surprised that Glenn Beck (just like Ed Schultz and other punditainment hosts) is playing with people’s emotions in tacky ways? What really ticks me off isn’t anything that Beck’s doing, its what everyone else ISN’T doing. It seems to me that if any, literally any left-of-center political figure wanted to hold an event and said it was about “Restoring America’s Honor,”  he or she would be flayed alive by conservative pundits/bloggers/facebookists. And Sarah Palin’s twitter feed would read “Enuff w/ liberals unpatriotic H8! I Didnt kno USA had become DIShonorable?! If U hate it here u can MOVE 2 FRANCE!”

I don’t think I’m just wildly speculating; I recall just this kind of talk helping to take down John Kerry and dragging Michelle Obama into a mini-scandal as well. Personally, I remember a few years back having a hard time expressing my earnestly held opinion that president Bush’s policies had  deeply damaged America’s moral standing in the world. I was worried that if I ever said anything like that, the rest of my opinions would be written off as those of an “America Hater.” And yet no one is questioning Glenn Beck’s patriotism just because he happens to think that Obama and the democrats have damaged America’s honor. Why? Because right-wingers are automatically patriotic.

I hate double standards like that. And to be fair, they happen in both directions. I  happen to think that democrats get away with shamelessly raking in the dough from huge corporations and then turning around and cutting them huge breaks in regulatory policies. Why? Because the left is automatically against big-business. And while we’re at it, why does everyone think Ken Salazar is doing a good job as Secretary of the Interior? Is it just because democrats are automatically good at the environment? The whole thing just really ticks me off. Good thing bloggers are automatically not required to offer constructive solutions and are just entitled to complain about the political status quo.

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About Colin West
Colin West is a graduate student in quantum information theory, working at the Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics at Stony Brook University. Originally from Colorado (where he attended college), his interests outside of physics include politics, paper-folding, puzzles, playing-cards, and apparently, plosives.

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