Extreme Opinions, Extreme Ignorance

A few days ago, dear reader, one of the junior editors at “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly”–let’s just call him “Chip”–found himself at an old friend’s home. Although “Chip” had not seen this longtime pal for some time, he recognized that he was of very different political beliefs. As a result, it came as no surprise to “Chip” to hear that his buddy aimed to attend an anti-Iraq War rally in Kennebunkport, Maine.

The friend informed “Chip” of the rally’s particulars with an undeniable sense of glee. Michael Moore was rumored to be the surprise special guest! (Some surprise.) The Indigo Girls would be present in an obvious attempt to jump-start their flagging careers! &c.

Whilst his pal described these dubious-seeming details, “Chip” kept his mouth shut. This was not, of course, “Chip’s” cup of tea, but it wasn’t his place to browbeat an old buddy for supporting radically different political views than his own.

And yet “Chip’s” friend decided to test the waters. “I know that you don’t share my opinion on the war,” he said. “How can you not hope for an immediate withdrawal of American troops from Iraq?”

With some reluctance, “Chip” answered the question. And this led to other queries, as “Chip’s” pal offered a laundry list of un-thoughtful anti-Bush complaints: The president is spying on all American citizens; “Scooter” Libby did something bad; &c.

Now “Chip” found himself fully ensnared in a discussion of modern politics. One by one, he attempted to answer the charges put before him.

At this point, dear reader, it occurred to “Chip”: His interlocutor–who would soon travel to Maine in an attempt to “stop the war”–knew essentially nothing about the political issues of the day. As “Chip” reeled off his answers to the various complaints, he noticed that his pal could not produce even a single counter-argument.

This was not the case, of course, because counter-arguments do not exist. An informed liberal could certainly present a spirited attack on the Bush administration.

But “Chip’s” friend couldn’t. He didn’t seem to read a newspaper, watch news programs, or follow the political scene in any way. His views on the Bush administration appeared to stem from watered-down arguments of his peers and half-attentive glances at “The Daily Show” whilst channel-surfing. In essence, he was extremely uninformed.

Yet this did not halt “Chip’s” buddy from taking part in a political rally that aimed at enacting a major American foreign policy decision: The US withdrawal from Iraq. “Chip’s” pal blithely joined up with this cause despite having never given a moment’s thought to the consequences of such a hasty retreat–either for America’s best interest or for the safety of the Iraqi people.

This is, in a word, disgraceful. And, we would imagine, it’s quite common. After all, how serious is “War Is Never the Answer” as a political rallying cry?

(Note: The crack young staff normally “weblog” over at “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” where they are currently pondering the sponsorship of a political rally tentatively entitled “No War, But Dates for Me,” aimed at males pretending to protest various causes in an attempt to score with chicks.)

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