One of the least self-aware snips of commentary you'll read today (this week? this year?)
Read this collection of thoughts from conservative columnist Gina Loudon (who fills in for Bryan Fischer on his viciously anti-gay radio show) and then I'll get back to you:
What if the Obama daughters’ careers were picketed and boycotted because their dad is a radical statist traitor who was wholly unaccountable and lied while people died in Benghazi? Would that be OK with those condoning the radical bigotry of HGTV right now?
We all know what would happen. There would be outrage! There would be so many coming to their defense. They would say it is wrong to attack people just because they disagree with their dad’s opinion on an issue.
The ironic thing about this situation is that this would never happen in reverse. Conservatives don’t hate people with whom they disagree. They would never try to destroy the livelihood of someone because of their political views. Conservatives are way too classy to do something like that.
Three things here.
First the obvious: conservatives have gone after anyone and anything that acts too pro-gay. The National Org. For Marriage and allies vow to end the careers of any elected officials who vote for or cast an opinion in favor of marriage equality. The American Family Association, where Ms. Loudon sometimes works as a fill-in radio host, attacks any advertiser that includes LGBT people in marketing or that places ads on even mildly pro-LGBT programs. And let's not forget that all of the groups oppose policies that do, in fact, better LGBT people's livelihoods. This is the movement that opposed the right to serve your country, that continues to oppose basic employment protections, and that believes turning a gay customer away from your public business is a "religious freedom" decision. And many who operate within this movement (Loudon's radio mention Bryan Fischer chief among them) do so with exceedingly vicious rhetoric. So let's cut the nonsense about how "this would never happen" on the conservative side. It's a ludicrous thing to say. Truly.
Two, just look at what Ms. Loudon is suggesting about President Obama, a mere handful of sentences above her "conservatives don't do that" schtick. "Radical status traitor"? "Lied while people died"? Um, correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure that talk like this (and Ms. Loudon's conservative writing is filled with this kind of talk) is designed to destroy. Some might even say it trends toward "hate," even though I tend to stay away from that label myself. Whatever it is, calling your President a "traitor" goes beyond simple disagreement.
And finally, there's not even the beginning of a comparison between something like boycotting the Obama girls because of fringe conservative claims about their father and a corporate network like HGTV making a business decision about one of their potential programs. HGTV simply responded to viewer outcry about two people who they were on the verge of helping turn into stars. Perhaps HGTV didn't know the full breadth of the Benham brothers' advocacty, or perhaps they just didn't think people would be as appalled by it as they were. Either way, HGTV gauged the market and decided, of its own accord, to not continue with the Benhams' program. There;s no boycott. There's no violation of free speech (the Benhams can't stop talking to any outlet that will have them). This is just a business decision. Disagree with it all you want, but don't misrepresent what it is.
But mainly, I'm hung up on the "conservatives don't" part of Ms. Loudon's commentary. If this whole pushing-myths-for-the-conservative-cause thing doesn't work out, she can probably sell that one joke to multiple late night comedy shows.
By the way: While recently filling in for Fischer, Loudon suggested marriage equality will lead to man-on-dog or woman-on-children unions:
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