To TEA Partiers and Republicans, Liberals are not people who have a different opinion about what is best for the country. We are traitors. When they say “Pelosi” or “Obama” it is with the venom and disgust they would use if they said “Hitler” or “Stalin.”
Conservatives have long claimed the patriotic high ground. I am old enough to remember “America–Love It or Leave It” bumper stickers. Anyone who disagreed with the war in Southeast Asia was a traitor and deserved to be shot like the Kent State Four.
Whether in war or peace, a citizen is obligated to express honestly held opinions. However, it is understandable that a fervent defender of a country’s military posture would see citizens who oppose the war as hurting the country. What is indefensible is to accuse opponents in purely political issues of betraying their nation. Supporting health care reform or an economic stimulus bill is not the same as selling military secrets to a national enemy.
No one has any moral justification for the kind of vile accusations and insults hurled at the Democratic leadership in the last election. The New Yorker cover, “The Politics of Fear,” July 21, 2008, was a harbinger of the ridiculous claims made in the 2010 mid-term elections. Appallingly, it was no exaggeration.
Sen. Harry Reid does not evoke the same hatred as Speaker Pelosi or Pres. Obama. A cynic might suggest that it is because the American Right is sexist and racist. Does an uppity woman or person of color offend them more than a white male adversary? Are the Speaker and the President so profoundly disrespected only on political grounds?
According to TEA Partiers, I am the vilest of quislings and deserve to be shot like a rabid dog. Their ugly rhetoric is no way to conduct healthy political discourse. It is time for the right wing to lay aside the insults and work for the common good.
John B. Payne, Attorney
Garrison LawHouse, PC
Dearborn, Michigan 313.563.4900
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 800.220.7200
law-business.com ©2010 John B. Payne, Attorney