I think almost every reader will agree with me when they say they hated reading Facebook after the election results. Gloating, name-calling, and absurd statements about “moving to Canada” seemed to take over everyone’s mind for a few days.
The next morning, in the Baylor Lariat editorial, students were urged to “Support President Obama” for “America’s sake”. By this, it seems the editorial was using the word “support” to mean “respect”. Surely we are not all expected to agree with the President’s policies and forget his shortcomings, but we would do well to be civil in our debates and political discussions, in order to not alienate friends and family.
The key quote from the editorial was,
“Whether you voted for Obama or Romney, this is a call for respect and civility in debates and political decision-making.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Right under the Lariat editorial on the morning after Election Day was a column by Leonard Pitts Jr. of the Miami Herald. In his column, Pitts accused conservatives of wanting to “repeal the decade” of civil rights.
Pitts goes on to allege that conservatives want to “restore our past”, accusing them of a “collective yearning for the perceived simplicity and normalcy of yesterday.”
According to Pitts,
“The power it holds over conservative minds is proved in the decibel level of the temper tantrum, the desperate fury of the resistance.”
Let me ask you this – how is this considered “civil and respectful debate”? Accusing an entire party of being racists is not just disrespectful. It is malicious and offensive.
In a prior column (also published by the Lariat), Pitts attacked the Republican party with another outrageous claim. According to Pitts, Republicans only view women as “bystanders to their own existence, their individual situations subordinate to a one-size-fits-all morality, their very selves unimportant, except as vessels bearing children.” Now, apparently, Republicans hate women too.
In yet another column (published Friday by the Lariat), Pitts again reflects his hatred of the Republican party by arguing it “has chosen to appeal to [their] base with a platform of fear mongering, xenophobia, demagoguery and inchoate anger” and “has embraced the politics of pitchforks and bomb throwing.”
Do all of these comments sound like respect and civility in political debates? Not at all. They are inflammatory insults with no basis in facts. Yet, for some reason, Pitts’ believes these comments are appropriate to be printed in newspapers around the country.