Fox News should fire Glenn Beck; Speaker Boehner should denounce the birthers

Fox News should fire Glenn Beck because there are some "opinions" that should not be given prominence on a network that purports to be a serious news station. Beck has the right to express his opinions, but a publicly traded company that presumes to be a credible news network should not be aiding and abetting the spreading of hate using its shareholders' money on the public airwaves.

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) should denounce the birthers clearly, unequivocally, immediately and unconditionally and should state, without qualification, that President Obama is a Christian and an American. A leader of one of our two great parties, and the leader of the whole House of Representatives, which is the true role of the Speaker, should not give one ounce of credence to the politics of lies and hate, or leave one inch of doubt that he condemns the politics of lies and hate.

There is weakness in the Democratic Party, for sure, but there is a cancer that is spreading in the Republican Party. The GOP should not allow Glenn Beck to be one of its loudest voices, and should denounce his hate. The Speaker should not treat the purveyors of hate as a valued part of his constituency, or a faction he is too fearful and timid to publicly and clearly condemn.

The president does not say he is a Christian. He is a Christian. The president does not say he is an American. He is an American.

What is happening in American politics is the cheapening of our dialogue and dishonoring of our democracy that combines the worst of the trivial pursuits of what is called cable news with the most extreme voices from talk radio and the Internet, and adding a partisan hunger for power that is extreme and dominates every other consideration in our political and media nation.

Personally, I am fed up with Republicans who preach or tolerate the politics of hate, fed up with Democrats who seem to have no higher values they will champion with conviction, fed up with cable news that treats politics like a forum for hate or a freak show with the latest babble about Sarah Palin and Donald Trump and the idiot nonsense that insider Democrats and Republicans who are out of touch with America tell each other at their insider lunches.

What they all have in common is that they disrespect their audience for their higher purpose of gaining power, making money, peddling the latest insider pittypatter without any serious discussion about the one-fifth of the nation that is jobless, the deadly crisis of the tens of millions who are hungry or the continuing cascade of those who are foreclosed upon and homeless.

I am going to have a lot more to say about cable news and the culture it breeds, and I will not spare Democrats or liberals. There are tens of millions of Americans who do not watch cable news because their voice is not respected, and the battle is only beginning for their hearts, minds and eyeballs.

For now, it is time for Fox News to fire Glenn Beck and time for Speaker Boehner to denounce the birthers, or Fox News will forfeit its right to be treated as a serious news network, and Speaker Boehner will forfeit his stature as a national leader for being too afraid to say publicly what he surely believes in the privacy of his conscience. 

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