A few days ago, I posted “where are all the damn liberal viral emails and why do I keep getting the rightwing ones instead?” I said exactly what the title implies: that as a liberal, I have NEVER received a “viral liberal email,” but I have received plenty of rightwing messages of dubious intent.
Now, it is imperative that you keep in mind that the word viral is the adjectival form of virus—which is usually associated with unwellness disease flu Ebola AIDS and other death-related things. That is, no one refers to those emails that contain those charming slide shows of puppies and gardens in the moonlight and Italian villages as “viral.”
The post touched a nerve with a few friends—all “liberals,” who have been waiting with abated breath (look it up) for their first-ever viral liberal email. One friend, who we will call “Brian” (because that’s what his wife calls him), was motivated to launch his own site on Tumblr, Nutty Right-Wing Viral Emails, which was ballyhooed by me in a post titled “another blog about nutty rightwing viral emails.”
After his first post, he received an email which he forwarded to me with this explanation: “Neal, yesterday I pointed out my new blogging effort to some people I know. This article (below) was sent to me by them this morning. Maybe NOT connected?”
Why are liberals so rude to the right?
The title of the article that he received is “Why are liberals so rude to the right?” by Leften Wright for The Guardian (May 27, 2013). At first glance, this seems almost a rhetorical question, except the answer would be the opposite of the author’s intent—“they’re not.” Of course, I am seeing it through eyes of a rude liberal and I don’t know the definition of rude being used by Leften. Or it could be a sort of rightwing joke.
As those of us who do NOT define ourselves as conservative, those who do are notoriously sensitive to anyone or anything that calls into question any of their cherished bigotries. Oops! There I go, being rude and calling names; instead, I will substitute “their cherished beliefs.” So, back to the article . . .
The sub-title of the Leften Wright piece is “Too many people who lean left would rather crack nasty jokes than actually be liberal and listen to other views.” This seems to be an extension of the joke and therefore intended as humorous. But since reading the text of the article makes it clear that this ain’t no joke, it’s not.
Honestogawd, there’s not a trace of irony to be found in the piece, so I am afraid we have to take the inanity of the title at face value. To bolster my inferring naught but straightforwardness, here is the opening paragraph:
“Why is it that liberals feel no qualms about being rude? Far too many people who are perfectly polite and courteous, otherwise, think nothing of insulting you for not sharing their political opinions. They look at us with disdain, thinking we’re unenlightened conservatives and never hesitating to say so.”
And what was the first example of this liberal rudeness that Ms. Wright offered to back up that statement?
“When news came on 9/11 that planes had struck the World Trade Center, my [tennis] partner commented that Bush would use it as an excuse to increase military spending.”
Um, am I missing something? That remark doesn’t qualify as “rude” anywhere that I have ever been. And isn’t that exactly what President Bush did do!
I canna go further. (That’s a Shrewsburyism; lookit up.)
The master of rudeness is on their side
But I can give you a example of REAL rudeness. Hostility in the political arena has been the norm since the FCC jettisoned the “Fairness Doctrine” and opened the airwaves of America to deregulation, which allowed demagogues unlimited access to the public airwaves. While these moral minority monsters may be forever personified by Lush Rimbaugh, there were and are countless others with even less restraint and more rudeness. (Can anyone forget Michael Savage?)
But Rushbaugh may have pulled the most egregious and offensive of rude and objectionable behavior by a commentator from any side—this time on his short-lived television show—when he compared 12-year old Chelsea Clinton with a dog. An anomaly, some might say.
Except that he also referred to Amy Carter as “the most unattractive presidential daughter in the history of the country.” So, we have the Lushbaugh down for consistency—and what appears to be misogyny, hardly a characteristic that the right holds against a real man.
And, like a real man, he never apologizes. For instance, his non-apologetic apology for the Amy remark included a dig at Margaret Truman. Like I said, the man is consistent.
Oddly, the total amount of outrage from the “Moral Majority”/Family Values crowd that I recall . . .
Wait! Damn! I don’t recall any a’tall. Do you?
Back to rightie Wright’s side of the story
No. I can’t. If you must read it, read it yourself—not here, there.
Reader’s comments are included following the Wright piece, at least one of whom defended the article as satire. Maybe, but I didn’t get that impression from the closing paragraph:
“This is a critical time in America. Instead of taking sides we should be working together. Now is the time for liberals to emulate Ted Kennedy and, instead of automatically ridiculing conservatives for digging into questions about Benghazi, theIRS, and the seizure of press records, help us find the truth—no matter what that might turn out to be.”
The events mentioned and linked to include one titled “AP, IRS, Benghazi: how can Americans trust President Obama now?” The other two are even funnier . . .
PS: Yes, “Leften Wright” is a nom de plume and an attempt at cleverness. The paper does have a contributor named Crystal Wright, who also blogs as Conservative Black Chick. Not that that necessarily means anything, y’know.
PS2: Hey, if I refer to a “viral liberal email” as a VLEM, have I coined a new acronym?