Do What’s Right

In the NY Times today Paul Krugman calls out Fox News Network (and specifically Glen Beck) and the Washington Times, citing them as examples of how the dividing line between “main stream conservatism and the black helicopter crowd” has all but disappeared.

I agree with him that making irrational statements like Beck’s that FEMA might be building concentration camps does very little to help the situation in the country, and, by ratcheting up partisan tensions may certainly instigate some of the less stable to violence.

But should Beck temper his rants, which some find entertaining? Does he and others like him have a responsibility for the idiots out there who are killing people? As much as I would love to say that they do, as much as I despise Beck and liars like him, the answer is “no.”

Entertainers do what entertainers do. If you don’t like it, you don’t watch it or listen to it, or buy it.

Even newspapers – especially newspapers – have a long history of slanting themselves to the whims of their publishers, going all the way back to the beginning of the country. Again, if no one buys the paper (or visits the website) that is what will make a difference there.

That being said, those who make statements that might lead others to violence need to make it clear that they do not advocate such.

Irresponsibly quoting Jefferson and saying “The Tree of Liberty must be refreshed, from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants,” can be nothing BUT a call to violence.

“Warning” the public that the Obama administration is “totalitarian” and building “concentration camps” can also be nothing BUT a call to violence – UNLESS IT IS COUPLED WITH A STATEMENT AGAINST VIOLENCE.

That’s what is owed here. Fox News needs to make it very clear that it abhors violence and that anyone interpreting any of its hosts to be calling for violence are wrong.

What is needed are prominent citizens from the right who will decry violence and declare that it is un-American.

I believe that everyone should have the right to pursue their own dreams, to make money where they can, to exercise their freedoms to speak, write, and whatever to their hearts content – until that activity infringes someone else\’s rights to do the same. Then there has to be compromise, there has to be accommodation.
When people are killing other people because what you are saying riles everything up, you need to do something about it.

I am not asking right wing entertainers to give up their schtick.

I just want them to also do what is right…

By Writeside