You may have seen the footage of 11-year-old Julia Hall of Malden asking President Obama a question at his recent health care reform forum in New Hampshire. But have you heard the outcry from conservative pundits who claim the girl was planted by Obama’s people?
They’re looking at the girl’s mother, who is active in politics, and then casting their suspicious eye on the daughter, who asked a simple question: “How do kids know what is true, and why do people want a new system that can…help more of us?” — which is, considering the tenor of the health care town hall meeting series thus far, is one of the most thoughtful questions anyone has posed.
If she was a plant, then why are the Fox News goons getting their collective knickers in such a knot? Ol’ Dubya had plants in his town hall meetings all the time, asking softball questions that had been prepared or approved by Bush’s people or throwing out feel-good I Wuv My Pwesident THIIIIIIIIIIS Much platitudes. What’s good for the goose, people…
Actually, I don’t agree with the practice under any circumstances or for any administration, but for the right-wing talking heads to condemn the practice Bush so often used further exposes their hypocrisy; conservatives under Obama are engaging in the exact same behavior liberals did under Bush — holding major protests, questioning the President’s motives, accusing the President of steering us toward fascism — except now it’s all acceptable, even patriotic behavior.
On a related note: anyone who criticizes Obama for wanting to “redistribute the wealth” to fund health care needs to realize we already do that.
When we pay our taxes, we are participating in a system that redistributes wealth; we are taking money from one person and giving it to another in some way, shape, or form. Look on your paycheck stub and you’ll see a deduction for Medicare (which, I must point out, is a single-payer health care system). I’m not using Medicare now, am I? Nope. And I could die tomorrow and never see one thin dime of all the money I’ve paid to Medicare over my lifetime returned to me in the form of medical benefits.
The rest of my taxes go toward various social support programs like food stamps and assisted housing. They support free lunch programs in the schools for low-income kids. My money, which I work very hard to make and keep, is going to support people that have little to no money, maybe even to people who consciously choose to do nothing with their lives and simply live like a parasite on my earnings.
Our society was built on several idealistic concepts, one of which is that we’re all in this together, and when one of us falls the rest of us are there to pick our fellow man up, dust him off, and if need be carry him until he can carry himself once again, because one day it might be you who’s fallen and needs a hand.
So, those who would so casually dismiss the notion of your tax money going toward a single-payer health care system: there but for the grace of God go you.
Last week I wrote about an incident at a local grocery store, in which the white male store manager stopped an African-American woman on suspicion of shoplifting. She was proven innocent, but since that encounter allegations of racial profiling have arisen.
My nosing around failed to reveal that the manager had done anything overtly racist (i.e., uttering a racial slur) or has a documented history of hassling minority customers. It doesn’t mean he wasn’t acting out of bias, but as our judicial system likes to tell us, innocent until proven guilty — and in the absence of any evidence, you’d think people would give the guy the benefit of the doubt.
Not so, and a few words of condemnation aimed at the manager came from what I’d call a surprising and disappointing source: a gentlemen who leads one of the Cape’s “No Place For Hate” groups. We discussed the matter at length, and at one point I pointed out the lack of evidence to support allegations of racial bias and asked, I thought reasonably, “Why is it racial profiling rather than a dumb mistake?”
His response: If the African-American woman had been a white man, the manager wouldn’t have stopped her.
Yes, you’re reading that right: the No Place For Hate guy made a knee-jerk assumption about a person’s behavior based on nothing more than the individual’s skin color. You know, the same thing the manager is accused of doing.
On a more frivolous note, I would like to humbly request that Hollywood place a 10-year moratorium on making the following movies:
- Anything based on an 80s toy line, because if I have to deal with Brett Ratner’s “Thundercats” or Gore Verbinski’s “Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors” I am going to pitch myself headlong out a high window
- Remakes of classic horror movies, especially if the originals were either really good (“Halloween”) or really bad (“Friday the 13th”)
- Hell, remakes of any kind. How about some original material, huh?
- Anything that gives Michael Bay work. Sorry, people, not a fan of the Baysplosions (go here to see what I’m talking about)
- Anything with that includes “National Lampoon’s…” in the title. Has National Lampoon released a legitimately funny movie since “Vacation”?
- Films in which any single actor’s pay would allow him to pay cash for a small Caribbean island
- Action films that use “bullet time” effects, wirework-based fight scenes, and editing so choppy and manic it could induce seizures in epileptics
- Zucker/Abrams/Zucker-style parody movies that simply lift iconic scenes from other movies, give them an absurd twist, then shoehorn them into a threadbare plot (these are easily identifiable because almost all of such films that have come out in the past decade have been called “[Genre The Movie Is Mocking] Movie”)
A very rare sports-related opinion: Kevin Youkillis deserves his suspension. He gets hit twice within a handful of days — the first time by a totally different pitcher than the one who nailed him Tuesday — and decides that’s the back-breaking straw? Good thing “Youk” doesn’t play football.
The views and opinions in the Enterprise blogs are those of the author and are not neccessarily shared by Falmouth Publishing.