Who says media has lost its magic?


To the Editor:

Many nights, as a young boy, I traveled back in time to the Old West or out to the distant reaches of the galaxy as my family gathered around the radio to listen to programs like “The Lone Ranger,” “Superman” and “The Shadow.”

Most of these programs ended in the late ’50s and many people thought the magic had died. They were wrong.

Now, listening to talk radio, watching Fox News or reading right-wing blogs, I am told the recent bombing in Boston was done by the FBI to trick us into giving up our guns, and the shooting at Sandy Hook never really happened.

One host warns of impending martial law and FEMA concentration camps and compares President Obama to Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin while another tells me global warming is nonsense promoted by the liberal media trying to destroy the free enterprise system. He says it’s scientific hogwash put forth by those who think humans can actually change this 6,000-year-old planet.

I hear a listener complain about the horrors of Obamacare and socialized medicine. I know this man, personally. He recently had major heart surgery in Boston, paid for by Medicare.

I read on right-wing blogs that Obama has quizzed each of his generals, ominously asking if they would be willing to fire on U.S. citizens and then read he may suspend elections and simply take a third term.

And right-wing media proudly told me about Jim Porter, the new president of the National Rifle Association. He is a hero because he calls Obama a fake president and wants to give citizens access to military style assault rifles so they can fight tyranny, the way rebels did during what he calls the war of Northern Aggression.

Now, there’s Benghazi. Right-wing media insists Obama watched the entire attack on TV and refused to send help because that is what you do when you hate America. No matter that is false. There’s more. Someone changed the talking points from terrorist attack to spontaneous uprising! According to them, that’s worse than Watergate, Iran Contra and all the other scandals in American history, all rolled into one and multiplied by 10! Yes, they have said that.

Of course, every right-winger knows President Obama and Hillary Clinton are involved, somehow, in some yet-to-be-discovered way, deeply hidden by the lame-stream media. As a result, patriotic citizens like former Arkansas governor, Fox commentator and Christian minister Mike Huckabee, Senator James Inhoff (R-OK) and others are beating the drums for impeachment. Obama must not be allowed to serve out his term!

And they will tell you, without question, Obama personally directed the IRS to harass conservative groups and intrude on reporters. It simply has to be the case.

Incredibly, I also see those same people shaking their heads and wringing their hands saying how awful it is that a foreign-born Marxist Muslim in the White House is so divisive!

On and on the right-wing attack machine goes like the EverReady bunny, endlessly beating the drums of hate, fear and division. Benghazi. Death panels. Hitler. Stalin. Communism. Tyranny. One wonders where all this hate comes from and what fuels it. One wonders where it will all end.

The entire circus proves those who thought the magic of the media died are wrong. It lives on in right-wing talk radio, Fox News and the right-wing blogosphere.

Back then, the magic of the media was transforming actors, actresses and even shadows into space heroes, adventurers and crime fighters in “the theater of the mind.”

Today the magic of the media is transforming racists, rabble-rousers and opportunistic blowhards into statesmen, thinkers and freedom-loving patriots in the “theater of the absurd.”

Charles Lawrence

Vietnam Era Vet (USAF)


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