I’m in trouble. It’s less than 24 hours before my article is due — and I got nothing.
I try to keep my posts current. I watch news, I read papers, I peruse the Internet, continually looking for stories that interest me. Occasionally when I’m hitting a wall, I’ll drive around with Fox News playing on XM and something usually jumps out at me to get me going. Megyn Kelly rarely lets me down.
Last week was big. We started the week with the Vice President getting “over his skis” on Meet the Press relaying his “comfort” with gay marriage. Tuesday brought the despicable result in North Carolina where an overwhelming majority of voters approved adding discriminatory language to its state constitution. By the end of the day on Wednesday, the President of the United States announced his support of gay marriage.
Without a doubt, I knew this chain of events would elevate the conversation around the topic. If one understands that sexuality is not a choice but a biological fact, then surely one understands that denying a group of people rights and privileges is a civil rights issue. And civil rights of a minority party is not an issue that should be decided in an election. As Rachel Maddow said, “It’s part of the concept of rights: they’re not supposed to be up for a vote.” Worthwhile conversations would be had — impacting our country, improving the lives of our citizens.
But sadly, no. Thursday morning we had the stupid Mitt Romney bullying story in the Washington Post. Yes, I said it. It was stupid. What Mitt Romney did or didn’t do to a child who may or may not have been gay in the 1960s matters zilch to me. The story is full of “haunted memories” and “troubling recollections”. The victim is now deceased and can not verify the tale. His family doesn’t approve of the story and appears to be offended that his name is being used for political gain. It was a ridiculous story.
The only thing more ridiculous than the article was the was the conservative response. Tim Carney agreed to go on MSNBC to discuss the incident but then claimed it was all a “media trick” once he got there and refused to answer any questions. Bob Barr blamed the “mainstream media” in an article on the Daily Caller. Fox News and Rush Limbaugh chimed in, blasting the Washington Post. All daring to be offended by the use of a candidate’s past while simultaneously trying to make issues of President Obama’s past by lifting passages from the President’s two autobiographies. “He shoved a girl!” “He smoked pot!” “He ate dog as a child while traveling in Indonesia!” A new book about past relationships of President Obama’s hits news stands next month. I’m sure the conservative media will just ignore that one, right?
And so here we sit. A week later and the “news” cycle has moved on. An opportunity for real progress squandered. These distractions generate stories discussing the stories and more stories of people’s responses to the stories and we all get caught up in a meaningless mess that has little to do with improving the lives of Americans.
I want to feel inspired. I want to see progress. I want to move forward. But how can we ever find solutions to real issues if we can’t even focus on the real problems? It’s left me feeling disgruntled, disappointed and frustrated.
Blah. This week, that’s all I’ve got.