Somewhere, somehow, we entered a portal that took us into some bizarro world, I’m convinced. It’s really the only thing (other than Romans 1:18-32) that can explain how we got where we are.
The latest evidence of this has got to be the liberal Left’s coming unglued about the phrase, “Let’s Go, Brandon.” A couple of writers at the Washington Post published a piece in October titled, “Biden’s critics hurl increasingly vulgar taunts.”
This is a direct quote from the WaPo piece: “Boos, jeers and insults are nothing new for politicians, especially those who reach the White House. Former presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as Trump, were all heckled, weathering protests along their motorcade routes and at some of their events. . . . The current eruption of anti-Biden signs and chants, however, is on another level, far more vulgar and widespread.”
What I want to know more than anything else is how dark it was under the log where they apparently were hiding the past five years. On another level? Hello? Did they bother to look at Twitter or watch any TV from 2017-2020 without their blinders in place?
There is absolutely no denying (unless you’re an NBC reporter) that the crowd in Talladega was shouting something other than “Let’s Go Brandon.” What I’m wondering, though, is where was this headline, this breathless handwringing from the media and the bulk of Hollywood, in the past five years? Did vulgarity aimed at the president just now become a bad thing again because the letter in front of his name changed?
Where were these WaPo writers and other liberal champions of the high road when the photo hit the news of comedienne (again, funny in bizarro world) Kathy Griffin holding what was supposed to be the severed head of then-President Donald Trump? To be fair, there were many who thought she’d gone too far, but at the same time there were several on the left who defended her. Jim Carrey, for instance. Griffin apologized for the stunt – but later decided she didn’t apologize anymore (stated bravely on The View, no less) and then reposted the photo following last year’s election. There’s no apology like a celebrity “I-have-absolutely-no-moral-compass” apology. I do not recall any backlash from the liberal Left or the media at Griffin’s conscious uncoupling from her apology, or the second posting of the gruesome photo.
Where was the outrage from the liberal champions of the high road when Robert De Niro gave his own Brandonesque speech at the Tony Awards in 2018? Many in the audience where he uttered the words gave him a standing ovation. The WaPo story mentioned earlier even admits that the phrase was used amply in graffiti against Trump. Yet, I just don’t recall the media establishment or the celebrity establishment bemoaning these things in the past five years.
The problem with all this handwringing now – from NPR to CNN – is that hypocrisy is never a good look on anyone. Hypocrisy essentially is a double-standard. The problem with double-standards is that there is no standard at all.
What the liberal Left cannot seem to fathom is the abundant silence and lack of criticism the past five years on those who hurled epithets against President Trump has rendered their opinion moot now. It doesn’t signal the claiming of a high road. It only reveals a kindergarten-level understanding of fair play. You know what I’m talking about: “What’s fair is fair so long as it’s fair for me.”
The “Whatabout-ists” would likely take the opportunity to jump in here and try to drown out my argument with chants of “what about all the mean things Trump said and wrote?” What about them? I’m not defending them. I wish the man had been more couth. I wish the man had put his stupid phone down and stayed out of the Twitter sewer. I think he would have served the Right’s cause much better if he’d been even remotely more gentlemanly. Wishing these things is about as futile as wishing I could still fit in the blue jeans I wore 20 years ago.
Fact of the matter is unless we have a true, immovable standard of what is and isn’t acceptable in polite society – and everyone is held to it, no matter the political persuasion of the person speaking – we’ll never climb out of this gutter.
So, I simply say this to the media, Hollywood, and certain parts of Nashville, if you’re reading: Save your sanctimonious sermons on the Right’s bad behavior unless you’re also going to hold your side to the same standard. Anything less than that standard is just bloviating hot air – and if the Left has taught us anything else in the last 40 years, it’s that we don’t need more hot air on the planet.
Jason Collum is owner and publisher of The Red Bay News.