Friday, October 26, 2007

In their face

Channel surfing is a terrible habit, worse than biting my fingernails. I’ll inevitably run across something by chance on one of the “news” channels that will piss me off. Last night my remote clicked around to the evil clown Glenn Beck, who somehow managed to get a prime time show on CNN. Watching the antics of this bug-eyed lunatic is equivalent to slowing down next to a bloody car wreck, just to get a glimpse of some mayhem.

Perhaps part of my sick fascination stemmed from reading about something he’d said Monday, to wit: "I think there is a handful of people who hate America. Unfortunately for them, a lot of them are losing their homes in a forest fire today." Think of the families forced to flee their homes on a moment’s notice, losing everything they have. Then read that sentence again and wonder why Glenn Beck has a job.

Anyway, last night he was showing clips of the recent Code Pink action at the Congress, where a woman with her hands painted blood-red actually got up close to Condoleezza Rice, calling her a war criminal and yelling, “The blood of millions of Iraqis is on your hands." She was dragged away, along with the other Code Pink women that were there.

And Glenn Beck is gesticulating in that clownish way that makes you feel nauseated and saying, “They're horrible, just a horrible group of people! I mean, look, you can be against the war. You can have this debate. There's nothing more American than saying that. But this is -- these people are over the line!"

I’d like to know what “debate” he’s referring to. Public opinion has been overwhelmingly against this war for literally years now, so that debate is over. But you wouldn’t know it from watching the “news” channels. And what avenues, may I ask, are available to the people to voice their outrage over what has been done? Well, I guess we can write letters to our senators and representatives. Or to the editor of our local newspaper. Oh yeah, we can vote every two years, assuming that the vote is not being rigged or suppressed, which is sadly not something we can ever assume again. In fact, I seem to recall that there was an election last year in which the Democrats were put back in control of the Congress, an election result fueled in large part by disgust with this war. And yet—nothing has happened. Bush and Cheney go on their merry way while Congress ensures that we're not making any disrespectful puns on General Petraeus’s name.

The citizens of this country are treated like spectators who have no duty to their conscience but to keep out mouths shut while war-mongers and plutocrats continue to drive us to ruin. That’s why Code Pink disrupts public events. Face it, everyone who has stood up for peace has been ridiculed, slandered, demonized, and accused of disloyalty, even when they’ve been polite and played by the rules. So raising a little hell is quite appropriate. Getting in the face of a murderous flunky like Rice is just what’s called for. She deserves to feel uncomfortable, maybe even a little scared.

Women taking action, angry women, women who are acting “unladylike”—these things inspire fear and revulsion in the patriarchal brain. Even Jon Stewart, bless his heart, cracked “You’re not helping!” when they showed a clip of a previous Code Pink action on his show. But what would help, do you think? Folding our hands, being polite, being quiet, waiting our turn? Our turn never comes if we just wait for it. We march in the streets by the millions and the “news” channels say that we were “thousands,” if they mention us at all. Have the rightists practiced dignity and civility? Hmm, maybe we should ask Ann Coulter about that.

The more hissy-fits the wingnuts, the better off we are, I think. The Fox zombies and AM radio roaches starting piling on Media Matters over the last few months because this little website has had the nerve to regularly fact-check their statements and expose them as liars. And they’re such pathetic little whiners that the thought of some website criticizing them provoked them into a torrent of whining and finger-pointing. It’s funded by George Soros, they sniveled, as if that would make a difference, even if it were true—which of course it isn’t.

Whenever an anti-war group or a progressive organization is attacked by these people, it means we’ve hit a nerve. That’s a good thing. We want that.

And you know, the last time I looked, Code Pink hadn’t killed anyone. They haven’t shoved anyone’s head underwater to simulate drowning. They haven’t blown little kids to pieces in the name of democracy. They haven’t put American soldiers in the line of fire while looting the treasury for all it’s worth. And yet somehow, they’re a “horrible group of people.” You know what? I’m reaching for my checkbook right now and I’m making a donation to Code Pink.

There. I feel better.


Mauigirl said...

Dashiell, you are so right. At what point do we stop just going along with these morons on office?

Two women from my town were recently arrested in Washington for demonstrating for peace and causing a disruption. I say, good for them! And they are not young women, either - both are in their 70's. I am proud to call them my neighbors.

fairlane said...

Here's the problem. Americans are conditioned to be able to take, and take, and take. On one hand, it allows us to survive, but on the other we never seem to hit bottom.