Monday, March 05, 2007

Questions on the conservative petition against Ann Coulter

On one level, at least I can applaud these guys for taking a stand against Ann Coulter's invective. But I also have to take issue with a couple of points in their petition:
Coulter... [referred] to John Edwards... as a “faggot.” Such offensive language... may be tolerated on liberal websites but not at the nation’s premier conservative gathering...

Within a day of Coulter’s remark John Edwards sent out a fundraising email that used Coulter’s words to raise money for his faltering campaign.
First, where do they get the idea that calling someone a "faggot" is tolerated on liberal web sites? Isn't the standard conservative stereotype of liberals that of trembling P.C. thought police, afraid to apply almost any unqualified terminology for fear of offending people? I'm guessing that the reference is to "liberal hate speech" and our supposed tendency to insult people who don't agree with us, but, even if that were the case and it's not, Coulter's latest broadside is nothing more than schoolyard taunting. I don't recall anyone calling another person "faggot" since high school and even then it was dwindling from the frequency in junior high.

Also, is the Edwards campaign really faltering? Not by any measure that I've seen. He may not be the front-runner, but it's also early yet. Would they refer to the faltering McCain campaign? I dunno, maybe so, but I think it's an inaccurate characterization of Edwards's campaign. Of course he exploited the visibility and anger generated by Coulter's comments (or his fundraisers did). But you'd have to be an idiot to not try to take advantage of that. That doesn't in and of itself indicate that his campaign is struggling.

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