Jon Stewart has done to death the “I’m a real american too goddamnit” speech so I’m not gonna bore you with my version, but my anger has been reignited at republicans speaking on my behalf without my consent – speaking of an imaginary populous that I don’t belong to.
A couple of things:
1. How are we determining what defines a terrorist? Is it a murderer who’s Muslim? That’s what this seems to imply. Charles Manson believed in an ideology that was counter to what the United States stood for. Charles Manson convinced a bunch of people to kill a bunch of other people. Ted Kaczynski was the same way. They were both tried in court and both were brought to justice. Nobody complained. Now, I understand that there is no legal way to demand that these people get tried in some foreign court because they aren’t foreigners, but why is what they did different than what KSM or Osama have done? Sure, Osama and KSM have killed and convinced more people than T-Kaz and Helter Skelter, but the definition of terrorist does not lie in the magnitude of effect. The shoe bomber and the panties bomber were both terrorists who had very little effect but should definitely be defined as terrorists. If Culberson (R-Texas) wants to argue that KSM is so much of a bigger deal and should therefore not be tried like an american civilian then he has a point I just happen to disagree with, but if he wants to defend as position that terrorists are different than murderers, he needs to define terrorist differently. Right now, it just comes across as terrorists are murders who read the Koran.
2. At 1:28 Culberson states without evidence that Holder has a disconnect with “where the vast majority of the American people are.” While this is a very hard question to pose to the American people because a “vast majority” of them (myself included) don’t understand the intricate differences between a civilian criminal court and a military trial, the polls still do not show a vast majority of people disagreeing with the Obama administration. I will look at three polls that were done around the time of the announcement of KSM’s trial in NYC. There are large discrepancies between the polls. Part of that is that they used sample sizes of 1,000 so their claims of 95% confidence in a +/- 3 margin of error is while mathematically right if the data is truly completely unbiased in its sampling, is far off considering the ways phone interviews automatically bias your sample by only polling people who are home with house phones. (20% of Americans now use their cell phone as their main phone and those people had a 6.5% higher leaning toward Democrats in the ’06 congressional election and an 11.5% swing toward legalizing gay marriage)1 2. Let’s also look at the wording of the questions. In one poll the group was asked to identify themselves by party affiliation then asked if they think “it would be better to hold KSM’s trial in a civilian criminal court or a military court.” 59% preferred a military court. I can also guarantee that 95% of those people had no idea what the difference was but heard the word civilian and knew that that referred to themselves and didn’t want to be that closely related to KSM. Th next poll has a long unnecessary diatribe about how KSM was probably responsible for the 9/11 attacks before asking a similar question. 64% preferred a military trial and very few people had no opinion. This angry rhetoric about KSM will definitely change the thought process when most people are unsure about their true feelings about this issue. The third poll stated: “Do you favor or oppose the decision to try the terrorist detainees linked to 9/11 in a civilian court rather than before a military tribunal?” and only 51% said they wanted a military tribunal. This question is both a very truthful phrasing and absurdly vague. Barely anyone in the American public will understand this question and so I think this poll should also be dismissed. My point is that if taking out the person’s name and instead describing his crimes can change 13% of the people’s minds, we should not be making statements about what the American people think on this issue. We don’t know what the American people think on this issue because the American people don’t really think or understand this issue – that’s what we elect you to do.
3. I am a fucking American! This is my Jon Stewartesque rant about how you can’t keep claiming that the Obama is not paying attention to Americans because he isn’t listening to Joe the Plumber and Betsy the abused housewife and Roger the kid who shoots his dog with a bee-bee gun and Anthony the guy with a confederate flag in his truck. Those are all Americans too, and by no means am I diminishing their citizenship, but I am too. Me, with my vegan food and women’s clothes and barista/art job. And I know plenty of other Americans in the same boat. Stop saying that you identify with real people because you shoot baby deer. 51% of households in America don’t have a gun and 69% of adults don’t own a gun. 3 Both numbers are, according to Representative Texas-Real-America-Hates-Muslims, a vast majority.
When you pretend your views are populist views, you are using very basic propaganda. This becomes a major problem when you begin subversively adding in your other more radical, racist views into your rhetoric – when you equate desiring a civilian criminal trial for murders whether or not they are Muslim with being terrorist sympathizers.
This picture below only vaguely relates to what I have just ranted about, but I think it is emblematic of the republican propoganda machine. It is a screen shot from a warning that only plays for 2 seconds at the beginning of a video that has over 1,000,000.