Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Death Panels, Birthers, and Common Sense

Since President Obama was elected, the nuts have come out from under their rocks. People you thought were normal, commonsense types have gone completely berserk. There are more conspiracy theories than you can count and many people that I know have swallowed them hook, line and sinker. There were Sarah Palin's death panels. Supposedly, if a national health care law was passed, there would be government panels who would decide if you deserved health care or not, especially if you were a senior citizen. Makes complete sense, doesn't it?

Then there are the birthers, those who would have you believe that the President is not an American citizen. The fact that he was born in Hawaii, has a birth certificate, and his birth announcement was published in a Hawaii newspaper has no effect on those who buy this claim. The coup de grace of course is the fact that his mother was an American citizen, which automatically makes him a U.S. citizen. No president's citizenship has been questioned like this. Even politicians who were considered to be somewhat sane, have jumped on the birther bandwagon, and, now, with the recent T-publican gains in state legislatures, there is talk of bills being introduced in state legislatures, requiring future presidential candidates to show proof of citizenship before their name is placed on that state's ballot.

Intertwined with the birther movement is the Obama is a Muslim foolishess. The President attends Christian services regularly and has for years. He often invokes his Christian faith in speeches. Yet, the Muslim haters regularly accuse him of being a Muslim, using his middle name and fake documents as proof. I often receive emails, falsely claiming that he is giving Muslims special treatment and planning a Muslim takeover of the U.S.

In today's news, comedian, Rush Limbaugh questions the President's Thanksgiving proclamation, saying,

"[Obama] said that Thanksgiving is about the Indians saving us, with their agriculture and everything else. The true story of Thanksgiving is socialism failed. Of course we showed them gratitude! We shared our bounty with them, not because we didn't know how to make it. It was because we first failed as socialists. Only when we turned capitalists did we have plenty. The Indians didn't teach us capitalism."

Now I ask you. Does this make any sense whatsoever? Yet, I'm sure there were people listening to this buffoon, nodding their heads in agreement: "Darn right. Them socialist Puritans deserved to die for being Socialists." Socialists? The Puritans? I'm still scratching my head on this one. Talk about revisionist history!

Common sense. Such a great concept. However, common sense requires, as we used to say, "using one's head for something besides a hat rack." In this particular case, putting ones prejudices aside helps a bit as well.