What Are They Thinking!?!?
The American Family Association brings back images of the Jim Crow south with this gem of a Christmas decoration. For only $81.85, you, too, can celebrate the season with a five foot replica of a cross set afire by the KKK.
I need some feedback on this. Am I overreacting??
UPDATE: This is particularly interesting in view of Frank Rich's must read observations in yesterday's New York Times.
AlterNet: Former News Radio Staffer Spills the Beans on How Shock Jocks Inspire Hatred and Anger - Dan Shelley
To begin with, talk show hosts such as Charlie Sykes – one of the best in the business – are popular and powerful because they appeal to a segment of the population that feels disenfranchised and even victimized by the media. These people believe the media are predominantly staffed by and consistently reflect the views of social liberals. This view is by now so long-held and deep-rooted, it has evolved into part of virtually every conservative’s DNA.
To succeed, a talk show host must perpetuate the notion that his or her listeners are victims, and the host is the vehicle by which they can become empowered. The host frames virtually every issue in us-versus-them terms. There has to be a bad guy against whom the host will emphatically defend those loyal listeners.
• In the talk show world, the line-item veto was the most effective way to control government spending when Ronald Reagan was president; it was a violation of the separation of powers after President Clinton took office.
• Perjury was a heinous crime when Clinton was accused of lying under oath about his extramarital activities. But when Scooter Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s top aide, was charged with lying under oath, it was the prosecutor who had committed an egregious act by charging Libby with perjury.
• "Activist judges" are the scourge of the earth when they rule it is unconstitutional to deny same-sex couples the rights heterosexuals receive. But judicial activism is needed to stop the husband of a woman in a persistent vegetative state – say Terri Schiavo – from removing her feeding tube to end her suffering.
To amuse myself while listening to a talk show, I would ask myself what the host would say if the situation were reversed. What if alleged D.C. Madam client Sen. David Vitter had been a Democrat? Would the reaction of talk show hosts have been so quiet you could hear crickets chirping? Hardly.
Or what if former Rep. Mark Foley had been a Democrat? Would his pedophile-like tendencies have been excused as a “prank” or mere “overfriendly e-mails?” Not on the life of your teenage son.
Suppose Al Gore was president and ordered an invasion of Iraq without an exit strategy. Suppose this had led to the deaths of more than 4,000 U.S. troops and actually made that part of the world less stable. Would talk show hosts have dismissed criticism of that war as unpatriotic? No chance.
Or imagine that John Kerry had been president during Hurricane Katrina and that his administration’s rescue and rebuilding effort had been horribly botched. Would talk show hosts have branded him a great president? Of course not.
President-elect Barack Obama is bringing the fireside chat to the Web, using the technology at his disposal to address Americans online in a new twist on the check-in pioneered by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
Welcome, as The Washington Post put it on Friday, to “The YouTube Presidency.”