Who was that saintly senator who dominated the weekend news?
I hardly recognized him. Did you?
When Sen. Ted Kennedy died, I decided I was going to follow the counsel we’ve received all of our lives: Don’t speak ill of the dead or, if you can’t say something good about someone, don’t speak at all.
But after listening to four to five days of nonstop revisionist history, I felt a need to weigh in.
First, a few thoughts that will ring true with every conservative, but almost no liberal.
And that is the continuing (in fact, accelerating) double standard of how the mainstream media treat people of the right compared to those of the left.
It’s not my purpose or intent to list his sins and weaknesses or those of his brothers, John and Robert. But while these are mostly covered up or overlooked by the national media, all conservatives know the mistakes of a conservative become the focal point of much of their obituary.
This is the double standard that the national media apply to liberals and conservatives.
I wonder how many well-read readers or the general public know that Joseph Kennedy, the father of John, Robert, and Ted, in the 1930s was a well-known anti-Semite and was an admirer of Adolph Hitler and the Nazis (which, of course, is shorthand for National Socialism). It’s alleged he made millions in prohibition days as a rum runner. If that were the profile of the father of John McCain or any other Republican, wouldn’t that be a major part of the narrative of their lives?
But my frustration with the dishonest and hypocritical national media causes me to digress.
The side of Ted Kennedy presented by the national media is just that — one side of him.
I’m sure the side of Ted Kennedy that the national media told us about 82,321 times in the past week — which is that he is brilliant, lovable, warm, feeling, caring, compassionate, reaches across the aisle, a happy Irishman — is true.
But here’s where the media’s dishonesty and hypocrisy come into play. They did not present the other side.
And the other side is the only side most conservatives experienced for 47 years.
We saw the Ted Kennedy who would crush conservatives like an ant in a nanosecond if you stood in the way of the advancement of the liberal agenda.
You don’t remember that side of Ted? Just ask Judge Robert Bork, one of the most brilliant and distinguished men of law of the 20th century (confirmed to be U.S. Solicitor General and a federal judge by unanimous votes in the Senate). I know he does.
The afternoon President Ronald Reagan nominated Judge Bork, Kennedy went to the floor of the U.S. Senate and said:
“Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists would be censored at the whim of government, and the doors of the federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens for whom the judiciary is often the only protector of the individual rights that are the heart of our democracy.
“The damage that President Reagan will do through this nomination, if it is not rejected by the Senate, could live on far beyond the end of his presidential term. President Reagan is still our president. But he should not be able to reach out from the muck of Irangate, reach into the muck of Watergate, and impose his reactionary vision of the Constitution on the Supreme Court and on the next generation of Americans. No justice would be better than this injustice.”
When it comes to public policy and politics, Kennedy was highly partisan and even mean spirited. He had acid on his tongue and pen, which he would, without hesitation, use against conservatives. Those in the media who lament the partisan tone of politics and the way judicial confirmation hearings have become meaningless because of “Borking,” ironically fail to blame Kennedy.
And if you connect the dots of his 47 years in the Senate, as he continually led the effort to expand the reach and power of government, you could reasonably reach the conclusion that in his heart he was a socialist — perhaps America’s most effective socialist ever.
His use of government power was not merely socialist, but often disregarded and contravened the Constitution.
One of America’s longest and most passionate love affairs is the deceitful relationship between the Kennedy family and the national media.
And if the truth must be aborted to keep the dream of Camelot alive, that’s the choice the media have been making for over 50 years.
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