Oh, Glenn, Glenn, Glenn.
What gets into you sometimes?
I could ask that of a lot of conservatives right now. Many of them, and there are far too many, are looking for ways to rationalize supporting Roy Moore for the Senate in Alabama because he has an (R) next to his name. My favorite quote from “A Man For All Seasons” comes to mind: “It profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world… but for Wales?” Wales is a bargain, compared to giving up one’s soul—integrity, values, self-respect, common decency, credibility— for the likes of Roy Moore. Even the most fanatic partisan has to accept that there are some depths to which no honorable person should sink for pure political gain. Partisans who don’t accept that are themselves untrustworthy.
Moore’s candidacy was indefensible long before he was revealed as a stalker of teens when he was an assistant district attorney. The allegations—there was another one yesterday—are just fecal frosting on a poisonous cake. Republicans are saying, “Oh, everyone’s making too big a deal over the frosting. It won’t kill you.” What about the cake???
Yesterday Prof. Glenn Reynolds, a conservative blogger who often gets disoriented amidst his more extreme and less erudite readers, posted,
HOW CAN DEMOCRATS SUPPORT THIS? Roy Moore’s Democratic Challenger Recently Ran an Ad Praising the Confederate Army. I’m sure all the press folks will ask all the leading Democrats that question.
This is wrong in so many ways, it’s like a tangled ball of unethical yarn.
The Slate article linked is intellectually dishonest, politically-correct History for the Simple-Minded. Normally, Reynolds would be mocking it, which would require defending Democrat Doug Jones. Can’t have that! Jones has run a campaign ad spotlighting Col. William Calvin Oates of Alabama, the Confederate officer who led his troops in battle on Little Round Top against Maine soldiers led by Col. Joshua Chamberlain. It was one of the most memorable and important episodes at Gettysburg:
“What brought those two brave men, one from Alabama and one from Maine, together was war—two sides believing so strongly in their cause that they were willing to die for it. Those times are past, long ago, and our country is better for it. But now we fight too often over other matters. It seems as if we’re coming apart. I want to go to Washington and meet the representatives from Maine and those from every other state not on a battlefield, but to find common ground, because there’s honor in compromise and civility. To pull together as a people and get things done for Alabama.”
Stupidly, Slate quotes Alabama columnist John Archibald, who wrote that praising the cause of slavery is probably not the kind of thing that will elevate black voter turnout on your behalf. Does the ad’s text in any way “praise the cause of slavery”? It does not. So why is Reynolds suggesting that the news media would be hypocritical not to make an issue of it, when he knows there is no issue?
He’s doing it to deflect from the awfulness of Moore by saying, “Look over there! Make Democrats uncomfortable defending one of their own who admired Confederate heroes!”
There is no excuse for any efforts to discredit Jones. He’s not Moore; that’s good enough. If Jones was sculpted out of cheese, he would still be the only defensible choice in this race. Yet Reynolds is raising a false issue, and one he knows is false, while arguing that Jones should be called to account on it.
Glenn, Glenn, Glenn.
Shape up or ship out.