Monday, October 07, 2013
Sarah Palin's favorite punching bag, Bill Ayers, writes a book about his experiences before, during, and after the presidential election that made him a household name.
Finally Professor Ayers will explain his take on what happened, why it happened, and what it all means.
“This is not a man who sees America as you see it and how I see America,” vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin cried out to the agitated crowd during a 2008 campaign rally, referring to then-Senator Barack Obama. “We see America as the greatest force for good in this world” and as a “beacon of light and hope for others who seek freedom and democracy.” This was how “real Americans” saw things, according to Palin. As for Obama, he’s “someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect that he’s palling around with terrorists who would target their own country!”
There it was: the punch line that would resonate no matter what else was said or done— palling around. It had a special creepy ring to it, for sure.
When Governor Palin—or, as our late friend Studs Terkel called her, “Joe McCarthy in drag”—uttered it that first time (and ever after) the crowd exploded: “Kill him! Kill him!” I couldn’t tell for sure whether it was me or Senator Obama who was the target of those chants— perhaps both. I’d been designated a public enemy before. I knew the territory pretty well and accepted the consequences with some equanimity, but now poor Barack Obama as well was forced to play Ibsen’s brilliant character, the embattled Dr. Thomas Stockmann, the “enemy of the people.” Stockmann was viciously taunted in the public square by a chorus of townspeople bent on delusion and self-deception: Kill the enemy of the people!
There was no way to prepare for what was about to hit me, of course, and at the outset I could barely glimpse it on the far horizon of my imagination—the great speeding locomotive designed to derail Obama would run me and others down as just some unavoidable debris or collateral damage, the inevitable road kill. No one really knew its shape or its power yet, no one could guess at its velocity. I grasped a couple of small things right away, but my family understood a lot more, and they were in fact already gearing up.
There is quite a bit more and I think you would do well to read it.
As somebody who weathered their own vicious attack from those forces that Sarah Palin put into motion, I feel I share a certain common experience with Bill Ayers, though of course HIS was a thousand times worse than anything I had to endure.
Still I find myself interested to learn more about the man whose name was considered so polarizing that it was brought up over and over again in attempts to derail Barack Obama's inevitable journey to the White House.
Besides let's face it, anybody who freaks Sarah Palin out this much, and scares the crap out of the Right Wing, is somebody worth paying attention to.