I’ve noticed that in the past four or five years there has been a chilling drumbeat coming from certain quarters of our political life. It is a drumbeat so loud that it silences detractors and stifles the free exchange of ideas. It is the drumbeat of crying racism.
I think I’ve heard the words “racist” and “racism” more in the past four years than I have in entirety of the past quarter century. Whether it’s MSNBC’s racial issues analyst (and now host) Toure with screeds I’ve previously documented or Bill Maher playing the callous comedy card, the fact is that shouting “race” in today’s society is akin to shouting “fire” in a crowded theater. It is a distracting play that shuts down debate and brands its target with a latter day scarlet letter. The only thing worse could be to call your opponent a child molester.
Check out Bill Maher’s latest attempt to vilify Mitt Romney, the candidate he wants to see lose in November, by tainting him with the racial rhetoric:
“Mitt, if you are serious about winning you have to think outside the box. What about — hear me out — Romney/Zimmerman 2012? It’s unorthodox, but who better than George Zimmerman to personify your campaign theme of ‘I Think The Black Guy’s Up To No Good’?”
I mean, what better way to avoid discussing the issues of the Romney platform than to just paint him a racist. Oh and what evidence does Maher (or anybody for that matter) have for calling Mr. Romney a racist? Beats the hell out of me.
This behavior is irresponsible by anybody who wishes to discuss politics in the public square, but it is especially heinous when whipped up by men with microphones and airtime like Bill Maher and Toure.
Remember that name calling and distractions are the refuge of scoundrels who would prefer to bully you out of your first amendment rights than allow for a fair and free debate….the hallmark of American political discourse for over 200 years.
That is why Bill Maher and Toure have officially been added to my “Illiberal Hall of Shame”, a special dishonor for men and women with public influence who use their cache to stymie liberty with distractions and/or statist policies.