Strong? How about bigoted?
For those of you who are lucky enough not to have seen Rick Perry’s latest television ad, let it suffice to say that it’s such an over-the-top piece of bigoted whining that I had to watch it four or five times in order to realize fully that it’s not a parody. It certainly looks as if it would be right at home on “Saturday Night Live.” Perry’s message is about as unambiguous as it gets:
I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a Christian, but you don’t need to be in the pew every Sunday to know there’s something wrong in this country when gays can serve openly in the military but our kids can’t openly celebrate Christmas or pray in school. As President, I’ll end Obama’s war on religion. And I’ll fight against liberal attacks on our religious heritage. Faith made America strong. It can make her strong again. I’m Rick Perry and I approve this message.
In case Mr. Perry hadn’t yet noticed, most Americans polled supported repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (the figure given here is 67%; I’ve seen figures as high as 77%), and I see plenty of people openly celebrating Christmas this month. I’m also not sure how Mr. Perry came to the conclusion that President Obama is waging a war on religion. Not only does Obama belong to a Baptist church, he also invited an evangelical Christian to deliver the invocation at his inauguration in 2009. Rick Perry seems to have grossly misjudged the values of all but the most rabidly right-wing of the voters in this country. That he appeals to a small fringe of voters is rather obvious when you see how unpopular his “Strong” ad has been among Youtube viewers.