It doesn't surprise me when my colleagues in the establishment press practice political correctness – refusing to take seriously stories about the questionable constitutional eligibility of the president of the United States.
I worked in the establishment press for 25 years before launching WND. I understand the worldview at work there. It's no longer about being a watchdog on government and other powerful institutions. It's about conformity. It's about statism. It's about promoting "progressive" ideas. It's about being contemptuous of American ideals.
But, given self-proclaimed "conservatives" have been so vocal in denouncing political correctness, it's a little surprising to see some of them practicing it.
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From Glenn Beck to Andrew Breitbart to Conservative Political Action Conference organizers to social climbing bloggers with little actual audience, some of the right have becoming increasingly hostile to continued calls for Barack Obama to release documents that would prove his eligibility and provide the transparency he promised with regard to his travels, health history, schooling, etc.
One of the most frequent questions I hear is why – why do folks like this insist on berating others for pursuing these legitimate concerns?
Here's what I think about that – and, granted, my theory requires a little amateur psychoanalysis:
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- For the most part, there is almost no appreciation for good journalism in the "conservative movement." It is comprised mainly of people who look at the press as it exists today, with its biases and laziness and its worldview so at odds with most Americans, and don't understand how a truly free press is critical to the maintenance of a free republic. "Journalism" to them is indistinguishable from pontificating. They don't appreciate the hard work and sacrifice real investigative journalism requires and how important it is to the future of our country.
- Just as most people want to be "accepted" and "validated," so do conservatives – even if it is at someone else's expense. It's funny how the same folks who are always grousing about the media long for their approval. The idea of being uniformly shunned and ridiculed by the press and other elitists is more than some of these conservatives can bear.
- Some of these folks just don't get why the constitutional eligibility of the president is a foundational issue. Whenever the Constitution is ignored or subverted, you would expect "conservatives," of all people, to be incensed. When it is ignored and subverted on a matter as clear as the constitutional eligibility of the president of the United States, the Constitution becomes a truly endangered founding document.
- Then there are those who don't see it as a "winning issue" – despite the fact that close to 50 percent of Americans tell pollsters they want to see the original long-form birth certificate, the health records, the education files and the travel documents. This despite the fact that only one news agency in the entire country, this one, has taken the matter of eligibility and documentation seriously.
- Some of them just plain don't understand the evidence for the concerns of so-called "birthers." They accept at face value the word of one virtually unknown Hawaiian bureaucrat who has proclaimed Obama as a "natural born citizen" – despite the fact that this political appointee has never faced serious questions or provided any documentation for her claim. They cite the digital certification of live birth as proof, despite the fact that there were any number of ways to obtain such a document without an actual Hawaiian birth. And, lastly, these folks who have so little understanding of the way birth information finds its way into major newspapers, cite the announcements of Obama's "birth" in the Honolulu dailies.
So why do I continue to push this issue?
- Because I don't make decisions about news coverage based on which issues are "winning" issues. I look at news coverage as a search for truth.
- I don't care what the rest of the media think about me or the stories I choose to cover. If I did, I never would have left the establishment press in the first place. There would have been no need for me to do so.
- While I like to be liked by others, I don't expect to be liked by everyone in the rough-and-tumble world of real politics and the media. My main concern, again, is the pursuit of the truth without fear or favor.
- I don't believe the concerns of tens of millions of hard-working Americans should be reviled and ridiculed.
- When politicians go to extraordinary lengths to avoid accountability, there is usually a reason. It's as sure as the old adage, "Where there's smoke there's fire."
- And, most of all, I believe strongly in the sanctity of the Constitution. Without it, this nation loses its moorings.