Politically Indirect

 “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”

Mahatma Gandhi

Current TV is vying for their own place in the cable news universe.  They have come up with a unique tag line, which I  believe they think will help them stand out from other “Progressive” networks.  Do they know something we don’t know?  There are three (existing) major cable news networks, only one of which by their own self description “Leans Forward“  presumably in the direction of  “progressiveness;” that would be MSNBC.   Current TV describes their coverage as “Politically Direct.”

Actually, I kind of dig that — I wish it was a description that could fit actual politiciansSay what you mean, damn it– and for God’s sake (and that of his alleged followers) — mean what you say.

I notice that when President Obama is very direct with the American people, “Repunditcans” and GOP candidates still offer their interpretation of whatever he says.  Clearly the  President does not stutter, so why do Rick Santorum and his ilk feel they must decipher the hidden agenda behind President Obama’s words?  I mean really – project much?!  Santorum, and the other Republican candidates,  insert whatever socially conservative message is trending, just to get in a dig at the President, every chance they get.  This is what I call being “Politically Indirect“;  pandering to the extreme social conservatives in your base, by saying things you probably don’t really believe yourself.  Indirectly you are speaking to your “Values Voters” with loaded and coded language they understand.  If you want to say President Obama is “not like us,” just say it!  Of course, that will lead to the question of who they mean by “us.”  Perhaps it is necessary for them to say things indirectly.  That’s what  follows when your message is just a smoke screen for your own “hidden agenda” to begin with.  That’s fine for you and yours, but that doesn’t work for me.

I am so tired of coded speeches followed by backtracking.  Just take off the damned hood so I can hear you more clearly.  What’s that you say O Frothy One – “The President’s a phony Christian”?  You know what, YOU aren’t even a ChristianYOU are a Catholic.  You are a follower of Catholic theology.  A theology which is not entirely bible based, having changed throughout the years, according to the way the ruling body of the Catholic church votes.  Yes, that’s what you read and what I meant.  You rarely hear Catholics say “I’m a good Christian”  What they most often will say is “I’m a good Catholic.”   This description seems to hold more weight for them.  Let’s not forget that there was a time,  not that long ago, when many Americans were questioning whether or not a Catholic could be trusted to run this country.

The Repunditcans interpretation of the First Amendment seems to consist of  “We have the right to criticize all other religions, other than our own, as wrong”  Wait, hold up, didn’t President Obama actually say, on more than one occasion, that he is a Christian too? Wouldn’t that mean that he was on the same side as his Republican counterparts?

Jesus Havemercy Christ, what does any of this have to do with politics, anyway?  The First Amendment protects  “freedom of  religion” but it also clearly protects “freedom from religion” as well.  Religion has no place in American political policy to begin with.  Perhaps the writers of the Constitution and subsequent amendments should have been more direct.  The separation of church and state, is strongly implied therein, but maybe the “politically indirect” need you to spell it out for them in plain words.  That is why the First Amendment, being open to interpretation, had to be clarified by the Establishment Clause:

The establishment clause is “[t]he First Amendment provision that prohibits the federal and state governments from establishing an official religion, or from favoring or disfavoring one view of religion over another.”[1]

Originally, the First Amendment applied only to the federal government. A number of the states effectively had established churches when the First Amendment was ratified, with some remaining into the early nineteenth century.  Subsequently, Everson v. Board of Education (1947) incorporated the Establishment Clause (i.e., made it apply against the states). However, it was not until the middle to late twentieth century that the Supreme Court began to interpret the Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses in such a manner as to restrict the promotion of religion by the states. In the Board of Education of Kiryas Joel Village School District v. Grumet, 512 U.S. 687 (1994), Justice David Souter, writing for the majority, concluded that “government should not prefer one religion to another, or religion to irreligion.”[2]

There, is THAT direct enough for you?

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1. ^ Garner, Bryan A. (June 2009). Black’s Law Dictionary (9th ed.). Thomson West. ISBN 9780314199492. Source: Wikipedia

2. Grumet, at 703 Source: Wikipedia

 

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7 comments on “Politically Indirect

  1. Eric Storch on said:

    First, I love that Ghandi quote. I always have.

    Second, I couldn’t agree with you more. Politicians are very good at saying what they think people want to hear and skewing the perception of the law to fit their verbal vomit. They tend to forget that while they’re campaigning, they are essentially applying for a job in which the American people are to be their employer. I know I wouldn’t be able to get a job if I told such outrageous BS to a potential employer.

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