Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Rick Perry's War on Common Sense

In all the excitement of Newt Gingrich's rise in the GOP polls nationwide, many have forgotten about one of the other "once-front runners", Rick Perry. Now Mr. Perry is attempting to jump back to the top with an array of new television ads, many of which airing in my home state of Iowa. And in true political fashion, they are full of as many holes as a congressman's soul.

Now normally I don't get too excited about political TV ads because they are always full of exaggerations and because after one watches them you often find yourself asking, "do they really think we are that stupid to buy this crap?" As such they should be treated like infomercials and muted when they come on the television. But occasionally, one or two ads will annoy me enough to call them out for the steaming crap that they are and it just so happens that one of Rick Perry's ads is the aim of my fury today.

Which ad I am talking about you ask?

 In this video, Perry discusses his faith and at the same time attacks President Obama for supposedly launching a "war against religion" in America. He does so with phrases like "I'm not ashamed to admit I am a Christian", and "“But you don’t have to be in the pew every Sunday to know that 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.”(1)....Where do I even start?

Firstly, President Obama for his many faults has NEVER been ashamed of his Christian faith. He has made frequent statements about his Christian faith during his tenure as President and has never shown any signs of being ashamed to admit it. Does the President wear his religion on his sleeve like Rick Perry does? No and there's nothing wrong with that. Since when did it become a crime for the President not to mention God every time he opens his mouth like Rick Perry does? Oh that's right, the US Constitution actually FORBIDS religious tests for those wishing the office of President of the United States. Strike one for Mr. Perry's ad.

Perry's second point in his video is even more mystifying. What exactly is the correlation between having openly gay Americans serving this nation in our armed forces and kids supposedly not being allowed to pray in school? One has NOTHING to do with the other. The President's decision (and the Congress' support) to overturn "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" had nothing to do with religion. It had to do with removing the final barrier of discrimination in the US military that forbade gay Americans from serving their nation without having to hide who they really are. Strike two for Mr. Perry's ad.

Further, contrary to Rick Perry's claim, students in schools CAN pray openly if they so wish. Students are fully allowed to pray openly in schools, their teachers simply can't lead them in such prayers because as employees of the state such as action would be arguably an endorsement of a certain faith which goes against the Separation of Church and State legal standard. Nor has the President done anything to change that in his tenure as President. Current policy on prayer in public schools has been set not by the President or Congress but by the US Supreme Court. So if Rick Perry has a beef with that policy he can take it up with the United States Supreme Court who has set those policy and boundaries in place.

But arguably the worst part about Rick Perry's ad is the massive hypocrisy that involve his supposed Christian faith. For a unabashed Christian man, Mr. Perry certainly has a funny way of showing it, by de facto stating that the US military should have the right to discriminate who can and can not serve their nation simply because of a sexual preference/lifestyle choice. The faith preached by Jesus Christ taught above all else tolerance and love towards our fellow man/woman and his and others' hatred towards those different from themselves is a disgrace to the Christian faith (cough Rick Santorum cough) they claim to be such strong followers of.

Instead of President Obama's supposed "war on religion", perhaps Rick Perry should worry more about his war on common sense..Does he really think we are that stupid?

Strike three, and your out Mr. Perry.



The views and opinions expressed in the above piece are solely those of the author and not that of the Modern Whig Party or any other political organization.

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