A few months prior to the 2008 election my friend The Destroyer of Colons asked me, “When Bush is gone, who are liberals going to hate?” He was only half joking. “Not to worry,” I assured him with a smile, “liberals can always find someone to designate as an object of their hatred.”
When I was in high school the priest who was teaching our Senior year psychology class had us write an essay based on the quote, “If God did not exist man would have to create him.” This was many years ago, but I recall my conclusion being something to the effect of saying that given mankind’s emotional and psychological needs if God did not exist we would have to create some divine being to believe in to give our lives greater meaning.
This was actually a blog post I was kicking around last year, looking back on 2008 when the focus of the left’s anger was directed toward Sarah Palin. It was almost surreal watching the hateful delight they took in watching our press journalistically rape her family while these same “professionals” ignored trivial matters like the horrifically flawed economic policies or lack of experience and questionable past of one party’s actual presidential candidate. Personally I’m not a big Palin fan – I see her as someone with very real flaws to go with some very real accomplishments, but the way she enunciates just grates on me (sorry, that’s just me). Then again, at least I generally agree with the substance of what she’s saying and if her speaking manner is fingernails on a blackboard to me hearing her talk is probably a tabasco sauce enema to leftists. For that matter, the fact that the very mention of her name can send most leftists into a seething, purple-faced rage will always earn her a place in my heart. Not to mention this past summer’s bus tour when the same press who had so much fun dumpster diving through her and her family’s lives were now crying that she was treating them like paparazzi – that was a thing of beauty.
Getting back on topic, it seems that no matter what the time is, the left has to have someone as their focus as their anger. Even in those early days of the Obama presidency when all was right in the world their focus went toward Rush Limbaugh and Glen Beck – reliable standbys. And then came the Tea Party. If you missed it the first time, check out my two part posting illustrating the left’s anger toward the Tea Party as told through the five stages of death and dying.
The left threw out every bit of hateful invective that they had in their arsenal. The Tea Party was labeled astroturfers, racists, seditionists, idiots, rubes, and terrorists. Their crowning slur came when none of these charges stuck and the left threw to the most disrespectful, malevolent smear they could find toward the Tea Party – they compared the Tea Party to leftists.
Another interesting case study in leftist anger is the comic strip Doonesbury. While I once enjoyed it as an actual comic, over the last decade it’s morphed into a sounding board for the angry and bitter leftist, Garry Trudeau. From 2000 – 2008 his range of topics could be summed up as:
- Hatred for George Bush
- Hatred for Fox News
- Hatred for George Bush
- Hatred for Schwarzenegger
- Hatred for George Bush
And of course, during the 2008 presidential campaign Sarah Palin joined this crowd. Mix in some patronizing, if not outright disdain for the military, and that pretty much sums up every comic not involving the personal lives of the characters, although these themes are generally woven in as well. One would expect that with a president as spectacularly inept as President Obama, Trudeau would have a field day. So naturally his strips have become focused on hated for Palin, Donald Trump, the Tea Party, and of course sympathy for the OWSers and their distaste for… prosperity?
After following the progression of Bush-Chaney-Palin-Limbaugh- Beck-Tea Partiers-The Un-Romney of the Month, we find ourselves at Tim Tebow. For those of you unfamiliar Tim Tebow is a pro football player, and is currently the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos. He has gained fame for his erratic style of play, leading his team to several improbable come-from behind wins. That made him famous in the sports world, but what took him beyond was his religion. To build on Dr. John’s analysis, Tebow became famous for combining his unusual talents with his spiritual beliefs. Tim Tebow is a devout Christian, and is quite public about it. “Tebowing”, the act of kneeling and bowing one’s head in prayer with fingertips on your forehead has become a national sensation in itself. He gained some notoriety for painting scripture verses in his eye black while playing college ball at the University of Florida. Tebow also caused a minor uproar during last year’s Super Bowl when he starred in an ad for a Pro-Life group, telling about how his mother had an at risk pregnancy where abortion was recommended, and how happy Tim Tebow and his mother were that she chose to have him. This created a bit of controversy, but no more than if a tasteful Pro-Choice ad had aired during the Super Bowl starring a famous female athlete. An example off of the top of my head would be if a top track star mentioned how getting pregnant in high school would have cost her a college scholarship and ensured a life in the impoverished place where she grew up. An ad like that would have gotten some criticism on the right, and would probably have blown over as quickly as Tebow’s ad did.
But then Tebow did the unforgivable – he became a famous Christian who is open about his faith. With the Denver Broncos’ poor play early on in the 2011 season Tim Tebow, who opened the season at #3 on the Broncos’ depth chart at Quarterback, was now the starter. And he started winning. And winning. And winning ugly. The team adjusted its offense to make the best use of Tebow’s athleticism and, let’s face it, terrible passing accuracy. Tebow had this strange habit of playing badly for three quarters and then pulling out an almost miraculous victory. I saw one person nickname Tebow “Uncle Miltie”, based on an NSFW-ish story about the late comedian Milton Berle that ends with the punch line, “just enough to win.”
The end of regular season’s performance (losses) by Tebow and the Broncos have bought Tebowmania back to Earth, but during his ascent and decline and once again ascent in his playoff win over the Steelers we’ve seen no shortage of venom from the left directed at this young man. David Schuster, the always reliably unhinged Bill Maher, even one of the more rational leftists in Bill Press all took their turns attacking Tebow. Heck, even The Nation, not exactly known as a sports publication, had to write several articles on the quarterback that the left loves to hate.
Why all of this hatred for someone who has done nothing wrong, or broken any laws? For that matter, while some may find his openness about his faith obnoxious, Tebow isn’t out trying to beat everyone he meets over the head with a Bible and preaching conversion. You know what else he isn’t doing? He’s not doing drugs. He’s not driving drunk. He’s not participating in dog fighting rings. He’s not bringing guns into nightclubs. He’s not fathering children out of wedlock to several different mothers. And he’s not murdering anyone. Granted, the matelote in each of the scenarios I just mentioned have gotten varying degrees of scorn for their actions, but none that were so ideologically centered. So why do leftists give the athletes in the categories I just mentioned a pass while directing so much venom at one man who most people would actually be happy to see their sister or daughter dating? It’s the same reason the left has so much hatred for the likes of Sarah Palin or the Tea Party.
They have to. Leftist policy just doesn’t work in the real world – look at Communism in Soviet Russia, Europe’s socialistic gradual death spiral (and that’s despite the US subsidizing their national defense) or or that matter, look no further than the White House. When Oregon was considering an Obamacare/Romneycare-esque health care mandate The Destroyer of Colons mused, “I hope that this bill passes, just so we can show leftists once and for all that government run health care doesn’t work.” I just shook my head and responded, “That won’t happen. Leftist policies never fail because they are bad ideas, only because greedy individuals refuse to throw enough money at their bad ideas.”
This is what leads to the Left’s permanent state of anger. When your bad ideas don’t work you can either reflect on them and learn from it, or you can cling to your bad ideas and be angry because nobody gets your genius. Without introspection as an option, a target must be found – hence the left’s continuous rotating figurehead as the object of their anger.
Even worse is how badly it is often misdirected. Look at the OWS’ers and their anger at… something. Granted, most of the movement is made up of Unionistas, career grievance mongers (Code Pink, ACORN, etc), students who have no idea what the real world is like, and criminals. These are all traditional Democrat-leaning groups, but at some point one would think that the Obama-rose-colored glasses have to come off and the realization has to set in that the president and Congress are the reason our economy is flagging. Maybe people who demonize profitability and threaten to punish the prosperity that leads to job creation are why companies are afraid to hire. On a personal level, maybe their facial piercings, lack of personal hygiene, and sense of entitlement are why nobody wants to hire them for any of the ever-scarcer job openings. Sorry, but the 12-16 years spent getting gold stars and being told you’re special for just showing up are over.
Again, rather than look at the causes of their unhappiness it is easier for the left to lash out in unthinking rage. The worst example that would actually be comical if it weren’t so disgusting was the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords. So blinded by their hatred for Sarah Palin were the leftists that they had to manufacture an excuse to pretend that she was somehow responsible for the shooting. To make matters worse, when she called them on their idiocy, they double downed on stupid and got even angrier at her simply for pointing out the error of their ways. And the sad part is the lefties started shrieking about how classless and stupid Palin was for doing so, when the place they should have been looking was the mirror.
This is not to say that all leftists are constantly out looking for someone to hate to fill the void in their lives. I understand that the tone of this post is a lot more accusatory than what I usually write but, as I dispel my own straw man a better question does come from it. Why does there always seem to be someone in the news who is the object of leftist anger, and why is it so viscous?
So where will Tebow go? Maybe he fizzles out by losing to the New England Patriots this weekend as badly as he did a few weeks ago, or maybe he goes on to win the Super Bowl.
"Only Tim Tebow can save us now!"
My favorite take on Tebow came in ESPN columnist DJ Gallo’s weekly satire of Peter King’s "Monday Morning Quarterback." In this week’s "The Hangover" Gallo speculates as to where Tebow may be in twelve years:
"Will a wholesome, handsome ex-football star who can draw the religious vote and appeal to the tens of millions of Oprah-loving pop psychologists win 51 percent of the vote in the 2024 presidential election? No, he will win 91 percent of the vote in the 2024 presidential election. The 9 percent who don’t vote for him will just be hard-core Raiders, Chargers, Chiefs, Alabama, LSU, Georgia and Ron Paul fans."
Tebow for President in 2024!
I’m kidding, of course. The only person to get Brother Bob’s coveted endorsement for president is none other than the great Stannis Baratheon.
But until then we have Tim Tebow.