Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Typical Shell Game

Let's count the incidences of anti-Republican bias in this story, shall we?

First off, the headline:

Republicans block bill to lift military gay ban.

Second, mention the court case which just found DADT unconstitutional, but leave out that it was a Republican group which filed the lawsuit:

Earlier this month a federal judge in Los Angeles declared the ban an unconstitutional violation of the due process and free speech rights of gays and lesbians. The decision was the third federal court ruling since July to assert that statutory limits on the rights of gays and lesbians were unconstitutional.

Third, devote only a single sentence to the fact that the bill also included a controversial form of amnesty for certain illegal aliens  (emphasis mine, of course):

Reid agreed to force a vote on the bill this week and limit debate, despite Republican objections. A Nevada Democrat in a tight race of his own this fall, he also pledged to use the defense bill as a vehicle for an immigration proposal that would enable young people to qualify for U.S. citizenship if they joined the military.

(For that matter, I question the validity of that sentence at all, since joining the military already speeds up the citizenship process.)

Fourth, bury the fact that two Democrats--the same number of Republicans who made the Obamacare a bipartisan bill, by the way--far enough down in the article that space limitations will ensure it doesn't even make it into quite a few newspapers:

Democrats also failed to keep all of their party members in line. Democratic Sens. Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor, both of Arkansas, voted with Republicans to scuttle the bill. The vote was 56-43, four short of the 60 required to advance under Senate rules.

That's paragraph 18, by the way.  Out of a 23 paragraph story.  Even further down is the news that Harry Reid himself voted against it:

When it became clear that Democrats would lose, Reid cast his own vote in opposition as a procedural tactic. Under Senate rules, doing so enabled him to revive the bill.

Of course, anyone who knows me knows that I have hated DADT since Bill Clinton first thought it was a good idea.  It's idiotic to put restrictions on homosexuals who want to serve in the military.  Given that only about 1% of our population serves at all, the number of gays is obviously vanishingly small.  Moreover, repeal of DADT would remove an easy out for some folks who can't hack it--it's no coincidence that the biggest Air Force base for DADT-related discharges is the same base that handles basic training.  (Of course, I'm thinking back to my brother's AF time, and how the crushing boredom started back in basic...)

But tacking the repeal on to a defense appropriations bill that also carries "immigration" reform?  That's nothing more than political theater.  On both sides of the aisle, frankly.  Democrats knew damn well Republicans weren't going to let it fly, and that the media would carry their water when claiming that it was those ebil homophobic Republicans killing the DADT repeal, and of course could have nothing at all to do with the barely-related immigration provision.

And the kicker?  Most liberals out there are going to swallow it whole, because God forbid you should apply two seconds' worth of critical thinking to a news story, especially when it tells you exactly what you want to hear.  (Ref: confirmation bias.)

3 comments:

Craig S. Miller said...

It is horrible that these ass hat politicians can send troops overseas, then use the money to fund them as a bargaining chip for their own social agenda.

Charlene said...

I listened to floor debate in the Senate the day this bill was being considered and afterward when various senators got up and talked.

The "controversial" bill you refer to was an effort to allow children brought into the country as minors by their non-citizen parents, sometimes as infants, to through graduation from high school, completion of two years of college and military service, become citizens after six years. What do you find controversial about this. This demographic is more loyal and willing to serve the country than children born citizens. Our military leaders say they are just the kind of soldier they want.

On the other issue, so are gay and lesbian soldiers.

The gay issue is one of civil rights.

The Republican group that brought the issue to the court are called Log Cabin Republicans and are pro gay rights. That fact was clearly and repeatedly covered when the court announced its decision on the Ask Don't Tell rule.

the pistolero said...

From dictionary.net:

CONTROVERSY. A dispute arising between two or more persons.

Since there is much debate -- a dispute between many more than two people, if you will -- on the legitimacy of the DREAM Act, there is therefore much controversy. It was made even more controversial -- i.e., more people disputed it -- by the fact that Reid & Co. attached it to another bill as opposed to putting out to pass or fail on its own merits or lack thereof.

Happy to help!