Is This a Great Country? Or What?

After yet another terrible mass shooting, this time perpetrated by some nutjob in Colorado at a Planned Parenthood office, the angry voices of the GOP have gone (not so) strangely silent. As vocal as they were in denouncing the silence of Muslims around the world following the Paris atrocity (which of course wasn’t remotely close to the truth), that’s how quiet they’ve been in the wake of the Colorado madness. Hypocrisy much? I guess it shouldn’t surprise that their inflammatory rhetoric–fomenting anger and fear in the weak-minded–inevitably leads to these kinds of episodes (and as it happens are precisely the kind of hate speech tactics used by the terrorists, themselves). For the rabid Right, acts of foreign terrorism seem mostly to be a political opportunity for manipulating voters. Acts of American terrorism, on the other hand, best not spoken of. To put it another way: when their own rabble rousing instigates violent acts on the part of their followers, what do we hear from them? Crickets.

Every single GOP candidate, in case you hadn’t been paying attention, has been slamming Planned Parenthood for months now, with Carly Fiorina leading the way. During one of the debates, citing a spliced together video of a fetus playing underneath a conversation amongst Planned Parenthood officials, she said, “I dare Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama to watch these tapes. Watch a fully formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking while someone says we have to keep it alive to harvest its brain. This is about the character of our nation.” Though this video and her characterization of it was subsequently proven to be a cut and paste job, she stood by her over-the-top rhetoric. Of course, she has not said a word about the Colorado Planned Parenthood shootings.

In fact, the only GOP candidates to say anything at all about the shootings were Ted Cruz and John Kasich, who sent out weak tweets expressing sympathy for the victims, but did not mention Planned Parenthood.

Fox News is just as culpable for stirring up the crazies. I spent Saturday with Fox News in my face for reasons that I won’t go into. It had been a while since I had subjected myself to more than a few minutes of it. Suffice to say that I had forgotten how insane it is that a “news” network finds a way to twist every story they report into more evidence that Barack Obama is the Black Devil leading us towards Hell. If I watched this kind of craven hate-mongering all the time and didn’t know any better I’d probably wind up shooting someone myself.

And then there’s Donald Trump. Do I really need to say anything about him?

Let’s Make America Great indeed!

 

 

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About Peter Alson

Peter Alson is a writer and editor. Among his published books are the memoirs Confessions of an Ivy League Bookie and Take Me to the River. He's also co-authored (with Nolan Dalla) One of a Kind, a biography of poker champion Stuey Ungar, and Atlas, the autobiography of boxing trainer and commentator Teddy Atlas. His articles have appeared in many national magazines, including Esquire, Playboy and The New York Times. He has worked as a writer for People magazine, and as an editor for Playboy and for Hachette Publications. He has written screenplays for Paramount and various independent producers, and his TV pilot, Nicky’s Game, starring John Ventimiglia and Burt Young, appeared in the New York Television Festival and the Vail Film Festival. As a poker player he has finished in the money numerous times in the World Series of Poker and other events. He lives in New York with his wife, Alice, and their daughter, Eden.
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One Response to Is This a Great Country? Or What?

  1. Stephen Mailer says:

    Here! Here!

    Like

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