Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Conservative loudmouths are crowing that they are driving Barack Obama's popularity ratings below 50 percent. They are very proud of themselves. They shouldn't be. Destroying what is best about our country is not something to brag to your children about. And the other shoe is dropping.
"I've stopped using Claritin," one of my friends told me.
"Zyrtec is just as good, and besides, you can buy generic versions of Claritin." This is not a column about allergies. I really don't know if Zyrtec is just as good or not. But they don't advertise on Fox News.
Claritin is, I am told, No. 1 on this month's boycott list.
Getting rid of Van Jones, the co-founder of one of the groups now organizing the boycotts, is not going to slow the movement. Quite the contrary. It may strengthen the cause. When folks start telling someone who has been a contributor at Fox for 10 years (me) to cut out the Claritin, you know it's spreading.
The same day, I found myself sitting with a group of people who share my strong commitment to the security of the state of Israel. To a one, they supported Hillary or McCain. To a one, they have "issues" with President Obama: These folks are worried about the economy and the deficit, worried about terrorism around the world and, yes, deeply worried about what they see as ambivalence from this administration to the threats faced by Israel. But -- and this is my point -- despite all of that, every one of these people is now an angry Obama supporter. Not just an Obama supporter, but an angry one.
The right may be mad as hell, but I've got news for Congressman Joe Wilson and his know-nothing cronies: You have turned your natural allies, people who might have agreed with you on properly raised criticisms, who might have agreed with you on substance, into your enemies.
Not critics, enemies.
Not people who won't vote for you or contribute to your cause or watch your show, but people who would like to see you driven from the television, driven from office, recognized as pariahs in a culture of civility, respect and decency.
New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd was right on Sunday when she said out loud what so many of us have been thinking. "Boy." That's the subtext here. I don't use the term lightly. Just because you disagree with someone who is black doesn't make you a racist. John McCain is not a racist.
Cal Thomas is not a racist. Mike Huckabee is not a racist. These are men I know, whose integrity I respect, even if we disagree. But Joe Wilson? And others who shall remain nameless here, but you can easily fill in the blank?
Obama has made mistakes. Every president does. But thousands of brave men and women died as a result of George W. Bush's mistakes, and no Democrat ever stood in the back of the Congress and attacked him as a liar during a joint session of Congress. Respect? Dignity? Integrity? Honor?
These people have none.
It's too bad. At a time when the country might be proud of its commitment to equality, we are torn apart. At a time when the country so needs to pull together to deal with the problems we face, the divisions among us are becoming deeper and uglier. At a time when those of us who are parents struggle to teach our children to live with honor in a difficult world, powerful men are celebrated for acting like the worst kid on the playground.
May God protect this president, not only for his sake, but for all of ours.
COPYRIGHT 2009 CREATORS.COM
See Other Political Commentaries
See Other Commentaries by Susan Estrich
Views expressed in this column are those of the author, not those of Rasmussen Reports.
Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.
We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.
To learn more about our methodology, click here.