A real brouhaha has ensued since the appearance of the “socialism” poster of Barack Obama made up as The Joker. Once again, great Americans are being branded as “racists.” Steven Mikulan said in the LA Weekly that the poster “has a bit of everything to appeal to the drunk tank of California conservatism: Obama is in white face, his mouth (like Ledger’s Joker’s) has been grotesquely slit wide open and the word ‘Socialism’ appears below his face. The only thing missing is a noose.” And Bedlam Magazine charged: “The Joker white-face imposed on Obama’s visage has a sort of malicious, racist, Jim Crow quality to it.”
Patriots, be on notice. This is the favorite tactic of the left. Any criticism of Obama, no matter what or how legit, will be labeled racism. Tea party? Racist! Opposition to socialism? Racist! Opposition to nationalized healthcare? Racist! Opposition to cap and tax? Racist! Opposition to the ethnic cleansing of Jewish people in Israel? Racist!
This tactic used to be effective. One case study is the 2006 Virginia Senate race, and the destruction of George Allen’s re-election campaign by the “macaca” incident. A presidential contender was destroyed by a leftopathic lie, despite the fact that the charge of racism was utter nonsense. Meanwhile, Joe Biden’s insult to Indian people went unremarked and unnoticed in the mainstream media.
The media has also ignored the real significance of the Obama Joker poster. It isn’t racism; it’s a sign of America’s rude awakening. The editor of the American Thinker, Thomas Lifson, observed that the poster showed that the inevitable backlash against Obama’s far-left policies has begun: “It is starting. Open mockery of Barack Obama, as disillusionment sets in with the man, his policies, and the phony image of a race-healing, brilliant, scholarly middle-of-the-roader.” But Lifson noted that “the President’s supporters have condemned the image, calling it ‘mean-spirited and dangerous.’ ”
Mean-spirited? Dangerous? Racist?
For years I covered the left’s spiteful and malicious attacks on President George W. Bush. He was likened to Hitler. “Bushitler” was so commonly used, it became a cliché. Leftists compared the jihadi attack on the twin towers to the Reichstag fire. And other motifs came into play as well: Vanity Fair even published an image of Bush as . . . The Joker. No one said a peep. Not a word. Instead, we were told that “dissent is the highest form of patriotism.”
And indeed it can be, at least unless you cross our Dear Leader Barack Obama. After eight years of relentless Bush bashing and America hating, The New York Times’s opinion makers are warning about the dangers of dissent. Bob Herbert recently warned about “right-wing hate-mongers” and “gun crazies.” Frank Rich sounded the alarm about “far-right rage.” Paul Krugman worried over “the rise of right-wing extremism.” Charles M. Blow came out more or less openly for a police state: “Society needs to do a much better job of creating an environment where hateful beliefs are never ignored and suspicious behavior never goes unreported.” What kind of “hateful beliefs”?
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made it clear who these people have in mind when she lied outright about anti-Obama protesters, claiming that they’re “carrying swastikas and symbols like that to a town meeting on healthcare.”
LIE! This has never happened at any of our rallies and protests. The left employed the swastika for years against Bush; the right has never engaged in this. Pelosi is spreading more lies and smears of good, decent folks. At the leftist rallies, the hatred against Bush was pushed and promoted relentlessly. The rallies that were organized by the far left infrastructure for years never hesitated to orchestrate the most vicious attacks on Bush. But when one poster mocking Obama appears in Los Angeles — a poster that was not orchestrated, not part of any moveon.org strategy — and it’s the shot heard round the world.
What happened to “dissent is the highest form of patriotism”?
The left should be warned: The libelous smear of racism has lost its sting. If everything is racism, then nothing is. The charge has lost its power. The more that leftists pull this evil trick, the more folks will shrug. The sad and terrible thing is that by using this tactic, the left has obscured the true evil of genuine racism. The fact is, when the left makes everything about race, and sees everything through a prism of “racism,” it shows us who the real racists are.
Pamela Geller is the editor and publisher of the Atlas Shrugs Web site and former associate publisher of the New York Observer. Her Op-Eds have appeared in the Washington Times, Newsmax, Human Events, WorldNetDaily, the American Thinker, Israel National News, and other publications.
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