America the Dysfunctional

I feel a little conflicted. on one hand, I don’t want to give this issue any more “media” attention than it’s already gotten. But on the other, well, I can’t shut up about it. Just as the rest of the world holds us in contempt for our unjustified invasion of Iraq, I can’t help but believe they’re laughing their asses off at our overreaction to a little nudity. Hell, right-wing commentator Cal Thomas made a barely-veiled connection between Janet’s display and the recent shooting of a high-school teenager in a radio commentary spot this morning (RealAudio format). The commentary itself bemoans the glorification of violence in our culture — fair enough — but goes on to lump sexuality in the same category; Thomas doesn’t mention Sunday’s “incident” specifically, but he does slam MTV, and this comes on the heels of Thomas’ syndicated column decrying the Superbowl broadcast.

People, get a life! Was this an example of high culture? Hell, no. Was it trash television? Sure, guilty as charged. Was it entertaining? Well, not particularly, but that’s a matter of taste. It it worth getting up in puritanical arms about? Please. I think it says more about the sorry state of this nation not that something like this was broadcast, but that it’s causing so many to burst blood vessels ranting about it.

I also find it fitting — with my related entry up for judging at Blog Madness — that investigators have recently determined that John Geoghan was not only beaten and harassed by both prisoners and guards during his incarceration, but was set up to be killed, in effect if not specifically. Not to defend Geoghan by any means, but how can we claim any high ground against regimes such as Saddam Hussein’s when we continue to torture our own prisoners? When investigations like this (and the exposure of abuse of 9/11 detainees) uncover official complicity, we can no longer claim that it’s the actions of a few individuals; it’s become endemic.

Okay, enough whining. After yesterday’s primary results, it’s starting to look more and more like Kerry’s going to take this thing. I’ll still be voting for Dean in the upcoming Virginia primary, but sometimes I do have to take off my “booster” hat and think objectively. I’d be willing to bet it’ll end up a Kerry/Edwards ticket come convention time. And I can live with that. Lieberman’s withdrawal certainly makes me feel a little better (a Lieberman candidacy I could not have put up with), and Sharpton’s poor showing in South Carolina knocks out the only other candidate I couldn’t have supported. I still think Dean’s been maligned by the ravenous media, but inasmuch as his candidacy has fired up the anti-Duh-bya voters, we’re all the better for it.


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