Originally, I thought that John McCain had sold his soul to the Republican Party. Now I think it’s possible that he has sold his soul to the devil. Lately it doesn’t seem like a big distinction, but it is. It really is.
I disagree with the ideology of the Republican Party, and think that cutting basic social services to undocumented immigrants is wrong. I am appalled with the political strategy of the campaign, and think that wasting the time of the American people on stupid issues like “lipstick on a pig” is wrong.
However, I am absolutely horrified by the current approach of McCain/Palin, and think that inciting angry mobs with insinuations and lies is wrong. Not just wrong in ideology or wrong in politics but morally wrong. Like God-Should-Smite-You-Down Wrong.
Who’s with me? Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner, says in a Washington Post editorial that not only is the jeering use of Obama’s middle name insulting to Muslims, but more importantly, “The real affront is the lack of firm response from either McCain or Palin... [to] denounce the use of Obama’s middle name as an insult.” He goes on to note that the most recent attempts to change the level of disrespect have been small.
Along with middle-name teasing, which we should have been done with in grade school, we hear that we don’t really know Obama. This message coming after two books he wrote and twenty months on the campaign trail and delivered by someone who apparently doesn’t read and has been on the campaign trail for barely one month. We hear that Obama “pals around” with terrorists and felons. Of course, Ayers bombed buildings before Obama was an adult, and the University of Chicago and two nonprofit boards seem to have vetted him into society, but somehow Obama should shun him. Now Rezko was convicted after Obama had dealings with him over his house and property, but somehow Obama should have predicted that and shunned him too. The Wright controversy won’t be coming up, because Palin has her own preacher issues. Plus, it’s a lot of work to paint someone as both a radical Muslim and a racist Christian but looking at the campaign, it was still worth a try.
Now McCain and Palin take all this crap on the road and get people really, really angry. The party line is that they can’t control what the people in the rallies say, things like “terrorist” and “get him.” Oh, or what people do, like threatening the media after Palin slams the media. Bullshit. If they’re going to rile up the people, they have to take the responsibility. Or, as said in this New York Times editorial, “The McCain campaign has crossed the line between tough negative campaigning and inciting vigilantism, and each day the mob howls louder.” The writer, Frank Rich, begins his article starkly and bluntly, noting our biggest fear with an African-American candidate.
And I swear, if some angry, idiotic person takes this sewage and does something stupid, unmentionable, unconscionable, then John McCain is going to hell. And at that point, the country’s going to hell in a handbasket with him.