It’s the Applause, Stupid


It’s been a few days now since the Coretta Scott King funeral and the rightwing pundits are still up in arms over the comments of several speakers at the event. Their spin on this is that a funeral is no place for comments like those of President Jimmy Carter or Rev. Joseph Lowery. The pundits suggest that people don’t want to hear comments like these. What they fail to mention is that these comments were followed by rounds of exuberant applause from a majority of those in attendance (in Lowery’s case it was a 23 second standing ovation which the right wing shows have, of course edited out and ignored). If the remarks were so out-of-bounds why didn’t attendees respond with shock or concern? Forgive me, but loud, boisterous applause is more in line with agreement than with concern.

It’s clear to me that what hurt the rightwing pundits and fans of this cardboard President most was having to see him take part in an event that he and his administration had absolutely no means to control. What you saw was George W. Bush out of his element surrounded by real people with real opinions. These people didn’t have to be vetted. They didn’t have to sign a loyalty oath. This was an event that our buffoon of a President has no skills to maneuver among. His comments were welcomed but not lauded. His invitation was a mark of just how much class the King family has. Frankly, if I were George Bush I’d have created some national emergency to fall back on as a reason for not being able to attend.

The King family has lived with terrorism. They’ve lived with racism. They’ve experienced loss and have every reason to be vengeful and yet, to their credit, have moved their agenda forward peacefully and with tact. These are concepts that seem entirely lost on the current President. All we saw at the funeral was a man who once again embodies the concept that the emperor has no clothes. How righties, many of whom mainly advocated and worked against much of what Coretta Scott King fought for, can be offended at real life comments is ridiculous as usual.

Worse is the hypocrisy that continues to pervade the Right. Republicans have long since used funerals to put forth personal and political agendas. President Reagan’s funeral was a classic case in point. First of all, no Democrat’s were even invited to speak. Furthermore, our current President had no qualms in using that occassion to suggest that Reagan was both a supporter of his and his agenda. Not surprisingly, none of the pundits had anything negative to say about that. Interesting……

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  1. Wow, what a concise, informative, well-established argument. You provide no counter to anything I said in the post and can only offer attacks as a response. I’m not surprised as this seems to be par for the course for how the extreme Right handles things. I also love how you stand behind your remarks so firmly as to not put your own name to them. 😉 What a joke.

  2. When I see a smoking pile of defecation I don’t need to step in it to see that it really is….you liberals give me a headache with your illogical -filled with hate for the President- arguments.

  3. I hate to break it to you but, once again, your logic fails to make any sense. I’m not a liberal. Going back in history, I first voted in 1984 and voted for Reagan. In 1988 I didn’t like either candidate. In 1992 I voted for Ross Perot. In 1996 I didn’t see any reason to bother voting as Bob Dole had no chance. It took George W. Bush to finally get me to vote for a Democrat in 2000. In 2004 I would have voted for a dirty sock over this President.

    Oh, I also live in NJ and voted for Doug Forrester (Republican candidate) for Governor.

    So, you want to try arguing with me with some facts for a change? The bottom line is that this President represents very little that either party can be proud of. I also don’t hate George Bush, I just think he is out of his league with this job. The only people happy with his performance are those making money on the war and the zealots who can’t think for themselves. Based on your inability to construct a sound argument, I’ll put you in the latter category.

  4. I agree with much of what you said, but I do feel the attack by Rev. Lowery was inappropriate in that venue. I don’t remember exactly what he said, but I remember that it was a cheap shot at Bush vs. any type of rational statement. Also, you have to remember the audience – of course he got a standing ovation for his comments, the demographics of that audience were heavily left-weighted. I don’t agree with Bush using a funeral to further his agenda either. As a dignitary and invited speaker to a funeral, especially someone as respected as Coretta Scott King or Ronald Reagan, you’re obligated, in my opinion, to keep your talk on topic. In other words, praise the deceased and keep your own agenda out of it.

  5. Hello Tom. Thanks for speaking up. I too felt the comments were certainly questionable, but I think that speaks a lot to the anger a lot of people have with the way things are right now and this President does everything he can to hide from such criticism. Thus this was a rare chance to speak directly to him. Understand that Mrs. King also often included heavily political overtones at funerals she spoke at. Thus for this crowd, it wasn’t anything radically new.

    However, we’re actually more in agreement than disagreement. I would like to return to a time where people don’t feel like they have to speak out at funerals. Unfortunately many of us have lost track of who “threw the first punch”, which often happens when politics go so far to either side.

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