Gavel Gamut: By Judge Jim Redwine
Fox News and MSNBC may not be able to identify any of America’s best and brightest, but they appear to have zeroed in on the four worst people to run the country. Fox berates President Obama and Vice President Biden as MSNBC showers contumely upon Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan.
An objective observer from another country might wonder how we Americans could have designed a political system that spends billions of dollars sifting through 310,000,000 citizens to only produce four people the national media skewers as, at best, incompetent and, perhaps, corrupt. And that does not factor in their families who are lampooned for such sins as having an interest in the Olympics or reducing childhood obesity.
Each morning about o’dark something I surf through the news channels looking for, well, news. But what greets me is a cacophony of bobbing beautiful hairdos honing in on all that is evil about the men who have committed the ultimate offense in the eyes of the national media, i.e., they want to serve their country. Now, I will jealously guard my American right to point out the mote in the eyes of everyone else. However, I do not ascribe venality to politicians with whom I differ. My first thought is not that they are evil or inept in general, but only wrong on the issues under consideration.
As to the four men in question, it seems to me each brings a wealth of experience and ability to the great tasks looming ahead. I am not saying we might not have been able to do better, I am only saying we are probably pretty lucky anyone is willing to take on these great obligations under current conditions, especially when they and their families must suffer the slings and arrows of the Sunday talk shows.
This is not to say we do not occasionally produce a morally flawed or even a dangerous national leader; it happens. After all, odds are if you are dealing with an entire country you will find an apple or two with worms. When that happens, Senator Joe McCarthy comes to mind, the true value and purpose of the Fourth Estate needs to shine through.
However, we might want to reflect on how we are going to continue to find good leaders if all they receive are a back full of arrows.