Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Shame on Media Advocates for Demonizing Those Who Don't Agree with Them

E. J. Montini is an opinion columnist for the Arizona Republic, and you don’t have to read too many of his columns to realize that he is very liberal.  Nothing wrong with being an opinion columnist of any political viewpoint, but it is sad to see Montini demonize and vilify those politicians who don’t perform according to his liberal orthodoxy.

A few days ago Montini once again took a major shot at Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who has become one of his favorite targets.  For a short time, there simply wasn't enough money in the state budget to provide for every disadvantaged person who may require some kind of organ transplant to stay alive.  Gov. Brewer worked successfully with the state legislature in Arizona to reign in a huge budget deficit and still find a way to allocate money to keep the transplant program fully funded, but that wasn’t enough for Montini.

His latest column basically blamed Brewer for the deaths of those who died before the funding was restored.  You can understand the emotionalism of the relatives who lost family members, but Montini did his best to make sure that she was was the only target of their anger, not the former governor, Janet Napolitano, who left a huge state deficit that temporarily wouldn’t enable full funding of the transplant program.  Montini even quoted one of the relatives referring to Brewer as “that woman, that terrible woman killed my mother as far as I’m concerned.”

Montini’s column is unfortunately typical of what many opinion columnists in the mainstream media do in these modern media times.  Instead of discussing the unrealistic expectation that government can provide for every disadvantaged person in every circumstance, he, like many columnists, just picks a politician who is not in accord with his ideology and makes that person responsible for the unintended consequences of legitimate state budget deficits.

Here is the reality.  Governor Brewer inherited a huge state deficit.  She and the Arizona legislature did everything humanly possible to balance the budget and still keep commitments to certain social programs, like the transplant program. 

Here’s is some more reality for Mr. Montini.  Despite being fully funded again, there will never be a guarantee that the program won’t run out of money again, no matter who is governor.

It’s a legitimate point that politics were a contributing factor in the unfortunate deaths of the people who didn’t receive transplants in time to save their lives.  However, to characterize one person as a devil who is personally responsible for the deaths of those waiting is not only completely unfair, it is bereft of logic.  There are so many other factors involved in these scenarios that Montini is not even exploring.

We’ve seen quite a few examples of many in the mainstream media demonizing politicians who they don’t like, especially women politicians. Look what has happened in recent years to women like Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann. Both of these conservative politicians have been attacked relentlessly in the liberal media.

There seems to be a pattern developing here.  Is it possible that liberal men in the mainstream media are intimidated by strong conservative women?  Maybe?

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