05/14/2009 (3:46 pm)
Beauty pageants are an artifact from a deceased culture. I can think of no good purpose served by a contest to establish, as a matter of subjective taste, which of several silicone-enhanced babes the public finds most attractive. While I enjoy looking at attractive women as much as any man does — we’re wired that way, it’s not a choice — I find the notion of young women hiking around on stage mostly naked for a swimsuit competition offensive; they don’t exist for our visual pleasure, why should they be made to expose themselves in that manner? The idea that worth can be obtained by looking a certain way distorts the development of virtue in America’s young women. And when they’re done, neither winning nor losing makes any particular difference.
So how is it that the runner-up in one of those competitions remains in the news almost a month after somebody else won the pageant?
I know the answer to that question, and so do you. I’m asking this way because I want to emphasize just how unimportant a beauty pageant really is — which makes the offense of the attack on Miss California that much more heinous.
The message to young women is clear: disagree with the gay lobby, and they will destroy you. It does not matter how unimportant you are; I mean, seriously, who really cares what the runner-up in the Miss USA pageant thinks? It does not matter how well-meaning you are. It does not matter how decent a citizen you are. It does not matter how good your grades are. It does not matter how many weak people you’ve defended, how many poor people you’ve encouraged, how many downtrodden people you’ve rescued. Disagree with this particular group, and you will be destroyed by any and all possible means. Even if you’re nobody. They hate, with a hatred so intense that it burns like the sun, the fact that anybody has the courage to disagree with them.
They will insult your intelligence. They will insult your looks. They will psychoanalyze you, based on no information at all, and pronounce you broken. They will publicize any mistake you’ve made, ever, and your parents’ mistakes, and your siblings’. They will compare you to a lynch mob, to a Nazi, to a prehistoric, sub-human species. They will publicize the implants in your breasts, and the caps on your teeth. They will make fun of your beliefs. They will display the worst, most embarrassing photos of you that they can get their hands on. They will call you names I can’t publish. They’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too.
Why? Because you dared to disagree with them. No other reason. They cannot abide in the slightest with the notion that a single person on the planet dares to disagree with them. They demand 100% consensus — or you’re road kill. And they know how to do it.
The innovation that made American self-government worthwhile was not the vote; voting has existed in some form since ancient Greece, and secures only so much liberty. The innovation that made American self-government history’s prized gem of human liberty is the rule of law. If no man has the power to suspend the law for his friends and associates, if every citizen is exactly and dispassionately equal before the law, then citizens are safe from the caprice of bullies and powerful thieves, and can pursue the demands of their consciences in peace.
The rule of law can be damaged by biased, partisan, or bribed decisions, and those are all bad things. But the rule of law can absolutely be obliterated by mob rule. If the mass of people decides to take the law into its own hands and enforce its own will by threats and assaults, there is no power that can stop it. The police can’t. The army can’t. If the mob gets its head up, that’s the end of the game; nothing is safe.
Mob rule is the tool gay activists have chosen in order to enforce orthodoxy to the god of Gay Rights. They’re not interested in democratic elections or fair legislation. Reasoned debate is absolutely the last thing on the planet they desire. No, you have to obey, because if you don’t, they’ll destroy your life.
Just ask Carrie Prejean. She was engaged in the meaningless pursuit of a crown in a beauty pageant when she was ambushed, blind-sided, by a gay activist trying to secure free advertising for his favorite cause. She answered according to her conscience, knowing perfectly well that she was probably ruining her chance to win by answering wrong (which says something pretty awful in itself). She didn’t know, however, that she would be the target of a month-long, country-wide, full-throttle, media-saturated assault on her character. Ms. Prejean has conducted herself for the past month in a manner that demonstrates courage and class. The activist who ambushed her conducted himself like a gibbering baboon on YouTube for all to see. It’s plain on the face of it, to anybody who cares about virtue, which of the two represents good, and which represents the most vile things in human character.
However, the assault is not just on Carrie Prejean, Miss California. The assault is on human liberty and the rule of law. It’s a clear attempt to assert mob rule by threats and bullying. Even something so banal as a beauty pageant cannot be free of their iron fist, their hobnailed jackboot. Even the runner-up has to agree, or suffer demolition. The assault is on us all.
So what I want to know is, where are the honest Democrats?
It does not matter where one stands on gay marriage — not when human liberty is at stake. Whichever side of that debate you fall on, honest people everywhere need to stand up to the bullies and tell them, “No, you may not win by intimidation. Liberty demands that the free expression of unpopular ideas be protected.” When someone so mundane can become the target of character assassination, everybody’s liberty is at risk, and the defenders of liberty must rise up and take a stand.
I think there are Democrats who care about human liberty at some level. Why are they silent about this? Are they afraid of the gay lobby turning on them next? They should be — and that’s precisely why they need to speak up now. Because every time a bully wins by intimidation, the likelihood that they will attempt some other conquest by intimidation goes up an order of magnitude.
A democratic republic survives only so long as most participants are willing to live with the results of participation in the system, even if the result goes against them. If any group large enough to make a difference decides that they’re going to do whatever is necessary to enforce their point of view regardless of the rules, the entire system breaks down.
Carrie Prejean is a nice-looking young lady who models, and who might become a special educator someday. Entirely by accident of history, she’s also the focus of one of the most important defenses of liberty in America. It’s not about beauty pageants, and it’s not about gay rights. It’s about the liberty to express unpopular ideas without fearing for your life.
Good people on both sides of the aisle need to rise up and defend her, because to defend her is to defend ourselves.
UPDATE: And here he is: an honest Democrat, on this topic at least. I don’t agree with Jon Stewart often, but I don’t find much to quibble with in this video, aside from the title, “The Pageant of the Christ” (and even that is a pretty good pun.) What he thinks is stupid really is stupid, what he thinks is inconsistent really is inconsistent, and at the end, what he thinks is unacceptable really is unacceptable. Watch.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||M – Th 11p / 10c|
|The Pageant of the Christ|
Credit Dr. Melissa Clothier for the video find.
16 Comments »
Comment by John Cooper
A most excellent rant. Thank you.
(Author sez: thanks.)
Comment by John Cooper
P.S. …and I meant ‘rant’ in the good way.
(Author sez: yes, I took it that way.)
Comment by Dr.D
You posited a hypothetical creature called an “honest Democrat.” I’m not at all sure that such exists; they have not been observed in living memory although they have been described in legends.
My point is simply that I think honesty has disappeared from the Democratic Party altogether, and perhaps from the Republicans as well. Politics has become about winning, only. There seems to be no sense of integrity to most of our politicians any longer. Their sole purpose to grab and exercise power by any means possible. Honesty, honor, integrity, concern for the good of the country have all been lost in the push for raw power.
One thing that I hope might come out of this current flap would be an end to beauty pageants. They are in no way up lifting, and in many ways they are degrading, so our society would benefit from an end to them. Perhaps this will be the event that will precipitate that.
Comment by turfmann
I, for one, do not think that the mob has prevailed this time. I am of the opinion that Carrie has handled herself quite well in the face of withering fire. The worst thing that she could have done would have been to cower, pander, apologize. She did none of that and the more backbone that she showed, the more shrill the shrieking became. The rabid faction of the gay marriage crowd has inflicted quite a bit of damage on itself.
Her prepared remarks at the Trump news conference the other day were syrupy, but what did we expect? She isn’t a politician or public speaker. She’s not much older than my daughters, really. In fact, I think she is an effective spokesperson for traditional Christian marriage.
Comment by RM
The “honest” Democrats saw the raging hissy fit Perez Hilton threw over innocuous comments from, you’re right, someone insignificant (no offense intended) in the overall scheme of things.
They have no desire or stomach to subject themselves to the same type of tirade and bad publicity.
Joe Lieberman is the last of the honorable Dems that included figures such as Zell Miller, Ed Koch, et al.
For a Democrat to speak up in this situation would really be about ‘speaking truth to power’, as opposed to making a snarky joke about Karl Rove at a Pelosi fundraiser at Fisherman’s Wharf.
I don’t think for a nanosecond that any of the Democrats other than maybe Lieberman would speak up out of any sincerity. But I’m surprised some young rat hasn’t seized the opportunity to take a page out of Bill Clinton’s playbook and grab a personal Sister Souljah moment.
Comment by darkhorse
Very pitiful that Phil is sitting and letting you guys get away with these horrid statements…I hope it’s because he doesn’t have time to pay attention right now.
If you remove the demonization glasses and actually sought to know some Democrats, you would find honesty is just as valued among them as among the Pharisees you are touting.
A sad display.
Comment by RM
One qualification: I’m talking about Democrat politicians, not average Democrat voters. I know plenty of them and although I don’t agree with them politically (nor do they with me) many are good friends. If you live and work in the northeast and don’t know and get along with Democrats, you have to be a hermit.
With respect to the demonization glasses, Perez Hilton snatched up the last pair and has been monopolizing them, so I’m not feeling guilty for taking the liberty of painting with a broad brush.
As for the Dem politicians, I hear the sound of crickets chirping when listening for even ONE to take a small stand or make a quiet call for civility on behalf of Miss Prejean’s right to say what she said without being demonized. I stand by my statement.
Comment by Phil
Your finger-wagging denunciation, if such a thing is ever appropriate, is ruined by your use of the phrase “as among the Pharisees you are touting.”
I’m not sure to which Pharisees you’re referring, but it seems to me that you’re just as guilty of overly broad accusation as the folks at whom you’re waggling that self-righteous finger.
I’ve explained to darkhorse many times, I’ve detected general patterns in the behavior of broad groups, and I think it’s appropriate to speak of those groups using those generalizations. Not all generalizations are mindless and unfair; some are fairer than others. There exist honest Democrats — both my post and my update acknowledge this — but there’s a general pattern of politicizing issues by obscuring the truth, and it seems to be practiced a lot more by Democrats than by political groups to the right of them in America, and a lot more by what we would call “hard left” than by Democrats; that is, the willingness to deliberately ignore the truth seems to increase as we move leftward along the political scale. That’s a generalization that, in my experience, comports with reality (although there are always particular exceptions, and nobody is suggesting otherwise) and thus does not deserve a finger-wagging tongue-lashing under the glowering eyes of my friend darkhorse.
On the other hand, I’m aware that you’re still offended that I called your friend a liar, and I attribute this tongue-lashing at least partly to the lingering anger arising from that offense.
Comment by darkhorse
“On the other hand, I’m aware that you’re still offended that I called your friend a liar, and I attribute this tongue-lashing at least partly to the lingering anger arising from that offense.”
Indeed not! If I thought you understood what you were doing in calling Joe a liar, I would simply turn it around. I attribute it rather to some psychological process that I don’t understand. I can easily let that be.
I am sure it is far, far easier to shelter yourself from broad, wide friendships with Democrats, then look through the peep-holes and make judgments than it is to actually discover that honesty is just as valued among them as among any other political group.
I stand by my Pharisee reference. I haven’t the slightest doubt that, if Jesus was walking the earth today, he would be spending time with women who had abortions, homosexuals, and all the other “sinners”. And he would have just as much time and patience for those throwing the stones at these as he did the first time around.
Now go on ahead, Phil, better seal this one up with a good last word.
Comment by darkhorse
Oh, and I didn’t mean to let you make it about you…I was sore disappointed in your respondents above for their puzzling statements. Anything I just said that sounds like an attack on you…not so much. I suddenly realized I turned it toward you.
I stand by my statement that honesty is as likely to be valued among the Democrats as it is among the Republicans. Been with both, just as you have, for long stretches…and humanity seems to be fairly present in both.
Comment by Phil
I haven’t the slightest doubt that, if Jesus was walking the earth today, he would be spending time with women who had abortions, homosexuals, and all the other “sinners”.
Nor do I doubt this, and I challenge you to point to anything I’ve said that suggests otherwise.
I’m interested in hearing whether this can be done without establishing criteria by which any Christian engaged in political debate on any topic could be characterized as a Pharisee.
Comment by darkhorse
“I’m interested in hearing whether this can be done without establishing criteria by which any Christian engaged in political debate on any topic could be characterized as a Pharisee.”
I am very happy to report that I was doing no such thing. I was speaking of the heroes that the conservatives have made of people like Dobson and the AFA, whose Lord had not a shred of care what the government may or may not have been doing to govern behavior.
But the Pharisees did.
Comment by Phil
While I think your judgment of those men and organizations is perhaps overly emotional, it’s beside the point. I don’t recall anybody here defending Dobson or the AFA.
However, as predicted, your defintion of “Pharisee” does, in fact, make a Pharisee of any Christian who advocates morally sound laws, which means any Christian who engages in American politics is a Pharisee in your view. This is necessarily so, because all laws are moral at their base.
[...] this mob activism launched against a Los Angeles restauranteur in the wake of the Prop 8 vote, or this flood of filth aimed at getting a Miss USA contestant to stop violating the mob’s sentiments, or even this [...]
Comment by Georgia Miller
Carrie Prejean deserves to have her crown. She is beauiful and is also entitled to her own opinion about gays. :-
Comment by Kai Collins
I’ve seen Carrie Prejean in person and i would have to say that she is just average looking“”