Wednesday, September 12, 2012

What is Wrong with You?

I understand dirty politics. I can understand taking a questionable quote out of context and using it to make a larger statement about your opponent. I can understand taking a single line from a single bill and trying to pass it off that your opponent voted specifically for or against that provision. I can understand those tactics, even if I can't agree with their use. And I know that all politicians use them.

What I can't understand is using a national tragedy, especially one that is painfully recent, as a backdrop to make false, distorted, slanderous, despicable claims about a political opponent. I don't understand how a person, especially in the public eye, can hold an impromptu press conference while blood is being cleaned up at a murder scene to decry their opponent's response to the tragedy as being unsympathetic and wrong. Three words come to mind when I see a story like this:

How. Dare. You.

You, Mr. Romney, have crossed a line in political and social decency. You have utterly ruined any thought I may have had that you were a decent man. Why? Because less than 24 hours after four people are shot and killed in the Lybian city of Benghazi, including our Lybian Ambassador, you cancel a rally, tear down the set, and hold an impromptu press conference to attack the President for his response.

And, not only is this immoral, mean-spirited, and needlessly vulgar, you make a complete mockery of the event by LYING THROUGH YOUR TEETH! What kind of idiot does this? Do you not realize that this is the hot topic issue of the day, that millions of people around the world, in media, in their homes, over the Internet, are all streaming information on this event, including the President's response. Do you really think people won't notice that what you chose to quote is complete wrong? That the piece you picked to emphasize came from the embassy itself, before the attack?

I know that you are waging a campaign, and are likely to use the tactics I listed above, which I can understand if I don't necessarily agree with. But this is a slap in the face to the memory of violence and death that has come with this attack. How dare you use this tragedy as a means of advancing your political career less than 24 hours after it happened, and then disgrace it even more by making up a story to attack Obama with. That is sick, shameful, and disturbing.

And I'm not the only one who thinks you've screwed yourself over. You were so focused on beating down your opponent that you've come across as a self-serving, arrogant, misinformed political narcissist. Unlike some other analysts, I don't know if you've completely ruined your chances in the election. But I'll tell you something: you've ruined your chances with me.

Granted, I'm not your biggest fan. But I respected you up until this point. Some people thought I was crazy for saying that I respected you as a person. I genuinely thought that you had the best interests of the country at heart. No more. No more do I see you as a patriot who is trying to do what he thinks is right by our constitution. I see a bully. I see a brat. I see a man who is in this for himself. If you cared about the nation, you would have kept your damn mouth shut and expressed nothing but grief and asked for nothing but solidarity. You would not have made this kind of crap into a punchline, because you would have understood how much it hurts America to see you use its darkest moments as fodder for your campaign.

I'm not sure I can respect you any more, Mitt. I really thought you were better than this. It's hard to believe, but you've let me down even more. Shame on you.

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