Monday, June 20, 2005

Rhetorically Wrecked

For a week now, conservatives have been foaming over a Senate floor speech by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) in which he said that an FBI agent's reported observation of Gitmo sounded like something you would have heard in describing the Russian gulags or the Nazi's concentration camps. For Durbin's passe use of Hitler, reasonably minded conservatives and conservative-leaning commentators (such as the Drudge Report, Rush, and oh, the White House).

Today, during a floor vote on a Democratic amendment requiring the Air Force Academy to develop a plan to prevent coercisive and abusive religious proselytizing, something that the Air Force has admitted is a problem (the culture at the academy had gotten to the point where cadets felt it was proper to call a fellow cadet "Jesus killer" because that cadet was Jewish.)

In response to Democrat's proposal to have Congress encourage the Air Force to fix a profound problem it itself admits it has, U.S. Rep. John Hostettler (R-IN) added this contribution to the national dialogue:

"[T]he long war on Christianity in America continues today on the floor of the House of Representatives" and "continues unabated with aid and comfort to those who would eradicate any vestige of our Christian heritage being supplied by the usual suspects, the Democrats. Like a moth to a flame, Democrats can't help themselves when it comes to denigrating and demonizing Christians."

Fortunately, the Congress still has some rules to promote decorum and to try to prevent the dialogue you expect on rant-wing talk radio and not the deliberative legislative body of the most powerful democracy on the planet.

Facing an uproar of Democratic disgust, Hostettler retracted these statements when he was told the sanction he faced if he did not: he wouldn't be allowed to talk the rest of the day.

Jon Stewart is right; we're governed by children!

Jon Alter dittos my thoughts on Gov. Bush and makes an interesting parallel to one of the lowest acts in Rev. Al Sharpton's career. Click here to read the Alter's Newsweek article.

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