This post is a rant, so if you don't want a rant, go elsewhere.
I am sick of seeing a bunch of lunatics try to run our nation on half lies and rumor. I am also sick of people trying to use half-wit reasoning and because they bellow the loudest they get treated like they actually know something. Let's have a nation where everyone's freedom of speech is appreciated and coveted and not just the people with whom we agree.
About a month ago, Helen Thomas went nuts in an impromptu interview with my old (like 40 years long)friend Rabbi David Nessenoff. Now David is one of my oldest and dearest friends. He is without a doubt one of the finest and bravest people I know. He was absolutely right to air his interview with the octogenarian Thomas and he was entitled to draw the opinion that Thomas was both biased against Israeli interests and that she maybe hit an age where she ought best to retire. The former opinion could be gleaned from her statements that Israeli's ought to get out of Palestine and go back to Germany and Russia. For this she shows a bias, but she is entitled to her opinion and no one, and I mean no one should have been asked to remove her from her job. She was a op-ed writer and to do that job she has to have an opinion. I am often moved to want to fire Rachel Maddow, Ariana Huffington, Anne Coulter, and a number of other people who think that debate is nothing more than a bunch of sarcastic comments strung together with a ridiculous idea to make one sound as ludicrous as possible. Then when she has insulted the other side enough she is crowned a spokeswoman for her side.
Not one of these people could hold a lamp to a William F. Buckley, Joan Didion, George Will, or John Galbrith. What passes as debate in today's hip-hop world is not the stiletto sharp barbed airing of ideas but the in your face name-calling that neither educates nor leads one to think. It is all pop and no corn. What's worse is that when we don't agree with them, we try to hound them off the air making them inconsequential.
The latest "High tech lynching" is over at CNN. I am speaking about the firing of 20ish year veteran Octavia Nasr.
She dare tweeted that she was sorry that Hezbollah leader Grand Ayatollah Seyyed Mohammad Hussein Fadlallah had died.
Now personally, I am not all that fond of this guy. He rooted for the destruction of Israel, and blessed the guys who later blew themselves and the US Embassy and a Marine Barracks (killing a number of Americans.) I think he is more terrorist and criminal sympathizer than hero, but I can understand Nasr's appreciation of his pro-women's stance in Islam (now that is something different) and that one may argue that as a Hezbollah leader he has a legitimately obtained dislike for Israel. (Legitimately in that he comes by it naturally having grown up Muslim in the mid-east and didn't come to his position by other choosing).
Of course that "serious" misjudgment that she may have an opinion other than those of her viewers caused CNN to shut her down. Now I get it. We here in the USA like Israel for a number of reasons both good and bad. However to act like a wounded dog and hound her out of a job she did pretty well shows the tolerance of a 3 year old. Freedom of speech with a large part of what makes debate possible. Intelligent debate requires that people who differ and have reasons. I am sure I could make a better case for Fedallah's death than can be made for him being a loving Human Rights figure. That is not the point. Nasr had a right to her views and I a right to disagree. I do not have the right to order her off the air to assuage my feelings.
I am just saying I guess that we aren't going to grow any more smarter just listening to those that agree with our position.
I am just saying...