Bill Kleckner: Glen Beck’s hypocrisy
Glen Beck and Fox News have been promoting the 9.12 project and asking their viewers to stand up and be heard in the spirit of the solidarity Americans felt and expressed after the attacks on the World Trade towers in New York City. The people who attended these rallies seemed to have a totally different agenda.
Let us look at the nine principles and 12 values Beck is promoting and the actions of he and his followers match these principles and values.
1. America is good. Hard to argue against that.
2. I believe in God and He is the Center of my Life. If you are religious, again, nothing wrong with this. If you are not, you may not agree. If you feel that you can push your religious views on me or anyone else through legislation, that is not what the United States of America was founded on.
3. I must always try to be a more honest person than I was yesterday. Beck may really believe what he says, but that doesn’t make him honest. I believe his wild and blatantly wrong statements expose his willingness to lie for his own benefit.
4. The family is sacred. My spouse and I are the ultimate authority, not the government. Beck believes this is true, except when the love of your life and spouse is of the same sex, then it is OK for the government to dictate what defines marriage and what rights you are entitled to have under the law.
5. If you break the law you pay the penalty. Justice is blind and no one is above it. Only crooks would disagree with this, except if you’re George Bush, Dick Cheney and the host of Republican appointees who believe they can rewrite the laws to fit your needs. Our civil liberties were abused in the name of national security. Geneva Convention laws were violated with no regard of how it might putt U.S. forces at risk of abuse when captured. I guess it is not illegal if you don’t get caught, or if you can’t remember anything when you testify before Congress.
6. I have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results. The actual wording is: “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Yes, there is no guarantee, but the wealthy and corporations should not be able to buy legislation that benefits them because they have more money.
7. I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable. Absolutely true. State, local, and federal governments require you to pay taxes for services and programs that benefit the majority of the citizens. Police and fire departments provide emergency services and enforce public safety. Social programs provide services that allow disadvantaged people the chance to earn a living, so they may not have to resort to theft. This isn’t charity. This is social responsibility. Perhaps you would rather keep your money and live behind walls with armed guards because the poor have no choice but to steal and drug lords rule the streets. This is the case in many countries where the government doesn’t care for its disadvantaged citizens.
8. It is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion. I agree with Beck, so how come when people disagreed with the Bush Administration, it was un-American and they were accused of it constantly? I believe it is good for America to have both sides of opinion to be discussed in open debate. I also believe that the Republican extreme right is preaching dissidence and disrespect because they have no real input to the debate. If you can’t have an intelligent discussion, scream and yell, so no one can.
9. The government works for me. I do not answer to them, they answer to me. Again I agree. I want the government to protect me from companies that practice predatory practices, from companies that harm our environment, from industries that will not regulate themselves even when it would mean their extinction. It is sad that many of our congressmen and senators are slaves to corporate money and political party demands.
Glen Beck lists the 12 values as: Honesty, Reverence, Hope, Thrift, Humility, Charity, Sincerity, Moderation, Hard Work, Courage, Personal Responsibility, and Gratitude. Who would deny that the list is worthy, but anyone can create a list of good values. It is whether you adhere to the spirit of the values, or speak them and then contradict them in your actions. Beck and many of the leaders of the Republican Party are spreading lies of death panels for elderly, President Obama is not a citizen, and that living wills for military personnel are really a guide for suicide. These alone violate five of the 12 values. I question their motives. Is it that they have nothing to contribute to the discussion, or is it what nobody wants to say? Is it racism? Congressman Joe Wilson, while he has the right to oppose the presidents plan, showed his true feeling toward the president by disrespecting the president and the institution he is a member of. The people who attended the 9.12 rallies, carrying signs comparing President Obama to Hitler, Stalin, etc. are not expressing rational discussion of the issues. People carrying guns to President Obama’s speeches are tempting fate and are using poor judgment. It is racism.
Glen Beck, Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, and others who promote these racist and self-serving views are the reason why the United States is no longer respected on the world stage. Glen Beck is the definition of hypocrisy. It takes little or no effort to find video on these people saying one thing yesterday and the opposite today. What good is a list of values when you don’t believe in them?
Bill Kleckner lives in Silverthorne.
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