Friday, March 26, 2010

If only...

It's no secret that conservatives dominate the broadcast airwaves these days. Regardless of the time of day, one has no trouble finding Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh or Laura Ingraham or Sean Hannity or Bill O'Reilly on the dial. The aforementioned have carved out a nice living by being the figurative towne criers for the Republican party. It's great to have smart, talented, quick-thinking spokespeople to filter through the politics of Washington, D.C. and give their listeners the pure-as-the-driven-snow truth, not the laughable lies that seem to regularly drop from the mouths of Obama, Pelosi, et al.

But I have a sizable problem with these folks. Somewhere in the quest to get the word out, they forgot how to be polite. And that's a shame. When a famous someone shares my ideology, I would prefer they have impeccable manners and a common sense of courtesy toward all, particularly those with whom they disagree.

Most of these "hosts" will talk at length with callers possessing similar political leanings and exchange opinions amicably, but when a liberal calls, they immediately become condescending in tone and soon, insults are flying. Often, they take a quote from a Democrat, take it out of context, and launch into a tirade about how awful the person is...not cutting the poor opponent any slack or realizing that occasionally people don't say precisely what they mean or perhaps choose a word that didn't exactly convey what they meant. Last week, much was made about a Democratic Representative who said something like, "we will control you", and when the GOP world heard the word "control", they siezed upon the quote as evidence that their opponents preferred communism over democracy. I've listened to the entire conversation and I feel the poor guy just picked the wrong word to say, something all of us who speak more than three sentences a day tend to do. Now rest assured, I disagree totally with this man's politics and would love to see him voted out in November, but come on, there's no need to have such a hair-trigger response.

Of course, the reason these folks have their high-visibility jobs is the fact that they DO act that way...arousing shouts of praise from conservatives and fits of rage from liberals. Ratings explode and reward them for their venom. In fairness, there is one fellow who endorses the company line AND treats liberals as people with brains. He is Mark Davis of radio station WBAP here in the north Texas area...he often substitutes for Rush when Rush needs a day off to cool his heels...and his tongue. I would hope that Mark someday has more of a national platform. It's so refreshing to hear someone whose intellect and conservative passion are matched by his respect for decorum and friendly discussion of issues.

Again, let me reiterate that I want nothing but failure for big-government liberals and their leaders. They must be removed from office ASAP. But wouldn't it be refreshing to have a polite give-and-take that doesn't leave everyone splattered with mud?

1 comment:

Jeff S. said...

Great post. Of course, I disagree with your desire for the current administration and other Democrats to fail. I also disagree with your assessment that some of these people are "smart." Talented, yes, but for the most part, they are not very bright. Take Glenn Beck for instance. Calling the president a racist and a Marxist and a communist shows his immense lack of knowledge. Beck has succeeded because he is a very talented entertainer and good at what he does. Limbaugh is the king of talk radio because he is incredibly entertaining, not because he is particulalry bright.

Having said that, you are right on the money with the impoliteness that has permeated many talk shows--on radio and TV. Regularly interrupting guests and shouting over them shows a great deal of disrespect for fellow human beings. It does not have to be this way. I, as you, would much rather hear an intellectual conversation rather than a talk show host shouting down "guests." Calling people names, as O'Reilly, Beck, Limbaugh, and Ingraham have made a living doing, accomplishes nothing. It just demonizes people with whom we disagree.

And by the way, that goes for talk show hosts on the left as well (Chris Matthews is a good example). There is also a liberal radio talk show host named Mike Malloy who is the Sean Hannity of the left.

One of my favorite colmunists is George Will. He is a true, intellectual conservative. I disagree with him the vast majority of the time, but it's nice to get a conservative view without having someone shouting.

And I also occasionally listen to Mark Davis when I'm in the car. I almost never agree with him, but of all the radio hosts, I find him to be the most respectful and courteous.