Wednesday, August 12, 2009

It's all about the kids

Steve Benen relates a tale about an 11-year old asking President Obama a question about healthcare, which has driven the wingularity batty. This is not particularly surprising. It happened before with Graeme Frost. Evidently Republicans really hate it when Democrats have kids ask questions about policy. Admittedly I find this kind of stuff kitschy, but also good that young kids are interested enough to ask questions. But the right apparently doesn't. So much for all that "The children are our future" crap, I suppose.

One wonders why this always makes them so apoplectic. My guess is that they've seen the same polls I do. They know that the Republican approach of bile, fear, proud bigotry and firm denial of modernity has made pretty much everyone under 30 come to despise them. Last time I checked, something like 2/3 of people under 30 are Democrats, and from the Republicans I talk to that are under 30, many of that group are also disgusted with what they see out of the GOP (though there are some that are totally on board, to be sure). Seeing young children engaged and making liberal points--kids that will presumably grow up into lifelong Democrats--merely underlines the right's looming irrelevance. Malkin, Murdoch, and the rest of them are playing the short game, ginning up their septuagenarian crowd on outrage and sending them out to yell at Arlen Specter, while losing the long game. Having kids around now and then makes the reality all the more inescapable.

So I have a proposal for the president and for all Democrats in Congress: bring some children to your town halls, and call on them for questions. The right has no conscience and will lash out at them, and it will illustrate what they're about in an unusually stark way.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.