Mike Farrell, (yes, of M.A.S.H. fame) was on the Diane Rehm show today. He'd taken a trip across some parts of the country and talked with people along the way about various social justice issues and has written a book about it--hence, his appearance on the Diane Rehm show. He's a liberal and/or progressive (is there some distinction between the two? I'm not sure). He was struck during his travels by the dearth of contrary voices on am radio and began to proselytize a bit on the road, telling folks there are more opinions than those of Rush, Glenn and Sean. Many times, he said, he was met with defense: folks stalwart in their insistence that what they heard on the radio was fact not opinion. Other times, he received respect for offering a differing viewpoint, just for the principle of the thing.
Though the conversation was engaging, the callers and emailers were the most memorable. 'Joey', an artist and family man without health insurance, called in with a familiar lament. He's an Obama supporter, voted for him and everything, yet when he is critical of him, he's lambasted as a right wing whackjob. Obama supporters seem to brook no dissent. I've seen this phenomenom at work myself. Just because you're critical of someone doesn't mean you don't okay...love them anymore. Those o us disappointed that Obama has draped the mantel of leadership around him rather than soldering his shoulders into it and charging ahead on...oh, let's say healthcare, have not withdrawn support. We'll still struggle into those "I heart Obama" t-shirts, however ill-fitting--for now. There is such a thing as constructive criticism. Although there's a variety of issues on which Obama's action or lack thereof has been disappointing, the advice on all, I think, can be summed up in two words: MAN UP!
'Cassandra' called with formidable contained and eloquent indignation at those who scoff at the President's having won the Nobel Peace Prize. I wish the audio were available to link to; it was an elegant argument.
The most memorable though, was the last email read, which pointedly and perhaps rightly, outed the left wing as a bunch of slackers. Ticked at Obama's performance? Check. Ranting on blogs? Check. Whining on talk shows? Check. Writing terse op-eds? Check. Organizing, shouting, marching in the streets a la teabaggers? Well, no...(can you have a glass of wine while you march?) Exploiting all possible media a la birthers? Uh, No! What would we have to put as our FaceBook status if we did that!!
You did it before. Get your voice heard. In a nutshell, what HE says: