Well, we’ve certainly been treated to a meltdown in what passes for the Right in this country in the age of Obama.
The examples are legion. Obama’s election, a moment seen by many of us as a signal achievement, also brought out, well, the lunatics who saw their country falling away from them. From Joe “You Lie” Wilson to “Second Amendment solutions”, we’ve had almost six years of increasingly unhinged rhetoric, rhetoric which was once confined to the purview of Aryan Nations—or Ron Paul—newsletters.
Imagine, if you will, if Bruce Springsteen had called George W. Bush “a subhuman cowboy”. Even The Boss might not have been popular enough to withstand the torrent of opprobrium.
And yet, here we have belle of the right wing ball, Ted Nugent, calling President Obama a “subhuman mongrel,” with the man whom he was supporting, Republican candidate for governor of Texas Greg Abbott, not casting him aside with the morning’s recycling. Nugent “apologized”, not for the content of his remarks, but because it embarrassed his friend Abbott (who, again, showed no signs of being embarrassed).
When Barack Obama came out in favor of marriage equality, suddenly the cause gained a momentum which has only increased year on year. So, of course, it was only obvious that the Arizona state legislature just passed a law allowing business owners to refuse service to gay customers. (Really, unless a gay man walks in swishing in the most stereotypical manner, how could a good, God-fearing business owner be sure that he wasn’t serving gays unwittingly? Is a sin of ignorance less awful in the eyes of the Lord than a willful transgression?) Because Arizona, faced with the myriad problems all our localities face, decided that this was a problem which needed urgent legislative attention. Why, if gays can eat openly in restaurants across the state, pretty soon they’d be coming out of the closet and playing on NFL and NBA teams! The horror!
Oh, we can laugh, but there’s something serious to consider. And it’s something which should both give us pause and ultimately encourage us.