Friday, February 29, 2008
I've been called many names; "Hussein" would be the least of it
Several days ago, Liz at Mom-101 wrote Political Death by Middle Name? for MOMocrats. In that article, she informed us that some conservative right wing talk show guy had decided a good political tactic was to employ the George Bush Manufacture Fact By Proximity and Repetition technique to link Barack Obama to terrorism. How? Because he happens to be named after his father, which means his middle name is Hussein. That's right: Hussein.
It's a name. That's all.
Not everybody named Wayne is a serial killer, and not everybody named Bush is...well, best to not hoist myself on my own petard here.
I read Liz's informative article, made a mental note, was annoyed, but thought, well, that's just too stupid to go anywhere.
I underestimated the mental immaturity and reckless irresponsibility of some right wing talking heads. I overestimated people's sense of honor, mistakenly assuming that all of us have this interior gauge that prevents us from going too low. I overestimated places that call themselves news stations.
On Wednesday night, while waiting for my husband to wean himself off of his obsessive political watching so we could tune in to American Idol, I caught Sean Hannity, Bill Cunningham and Alan Colmes on the TV talking about Obama, no talking about his middle name.
Seriously, this is considered newsworthy? Some asshat in Ohio pulls a schoolyard stunt and makes fun of a presidential candidate's name and so-called news stations needs to allow time to discuss it?
Dude, didn't anyone ever tell you the best way to get rid of a bully and his taunts is to ignore him?
But they didn't.
Instead, major networks spread Cunningham's message. All righty then. Let's talk about it. Let's get the issue on the table and talk it into the nothing that it is.
So, I wrote, "Sing it with me: This is the way we attack Barack, attack Barack, attack Barack..." for MOMocrats.
People went from eye-rolling when it was simply some guy on a talk show to "nuklar" now that it was a nationwide scam.
John McCain shunned Bill Cunningham, and apologized to Obama. Cunningham leapt into bed with Ann Coulter (and that ought to tell you a lot) and declared for Hillary Clinton, who probably got no sleep that night whatsoever as she tried to think of a way to renounce, denounce, reject or ignore her new backers. (Yes, that was a debate reference from the other night, and yes, my friend Sarah Slouching, I did in fact nerd out in that moment.)
And the MOMocrats started a meme.
If you think using this tactic to smear Obama is way too low, way too ridiculous, and want to help water it down, join in the meme.
The "Just Call Me Hussein" meme is about names, and our own personal experience with them. Participation brings: blog fodder, a button and a MOMocrats link.
1. Click here to read all the instructions in detail and see links to people who already participated.
2. Post your "Hussein name" in the title of your blog.
3. Share a story about how someone tried to make you feel bad about your name.
4. When you post, be sure to link MOMocrats at http://momocrats.typepad.com/momocrats/ so we can find you. You can also comment on the meme post at MOMocrats and even may include a link. We're groovy with that.
And if you want a bit of a laugh at my expense, my own little nickname embarrassment, you can check out, "Benny, when you call me, you can call me Hussein."
Let's take the high road, let's be louder than the culture of fear and anxiety, let's pull the plug on this.
Note: Speaking of memes, I know Jenn, Mimi, and a few other people (sorry, foggy headed this morning...no coffee, and am getting husband's sickness...he's generous at sharing that way) tagged me for memes that I want to do. I have a list. No I swear, I do. I know what I'm supposed to do. I'd intended to do it today but *got derailed by idiocy.* Maybe it will be my fun fluff for the weekend. And you guys rocked yesterday, thanks. :)
Copyright 2008 Julie Pippert
Also blogging at:
Julie Pippert REVIEWS: Get a real opinion about BOOKS, MUSIC and MORE
Julie Pippert RECOMMENDS: A real opinion about HELPFUL and TIME-SAVING products
Moms Speak Up: Talking about the environment, dangerous imports, health care, food safety, media and marketing, education, politics and many other hot topics of concern.