Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Why Politicize The Nonpolitical? Part 2

Why politicize that which is completely unrelated to politics? Are those who share your ideology so utterly without accomplishment that you can find nothing worth writing about in any positive light?Have you no alternative to a smokescreen of lies, twisted half-truths and propagandist fairy tales in your attempts to discredit those who believe differently than you? This accomplishes nothing other than to destroy your own credibility and make you look foolish and petty. Not just at the individual level either; the credibility, intelligence and integrity of your entire ideological collective become suspect. Let's take a look at another example from the past week.

This time it's the tried and true “Liberals want to take your guns so are therefore anti-American communists” routine. Blah blah blah. This time it involves the NFL denying a gun manufacturer advertising time during the upcoming Super Bowl, certainly not the first time an ad had been refused air time. The headline accompanying the video spreading like wildfire through the Conservative blogosphere is “This Ad Stunned So Many Liberals, The NFL Banned It From The SuperBowl.” You can see the ad on the gun manufacturer's site, here.

Once again, that which is being blamed on the “liberals” has nothing to do with liberals. It had everything to do with the NFL's 2013 NFL Season Prohibited Advertising Categories. Once again it's factually challenged conservatives creating and spreading anger under false pretenses. You can see the document yourself here.

Number 5 on the list of prohibited categories is “Firearms, ammunition or other weapons” which seems pretty clear. What else would a gun manufacturer be trying to sell you, other than guns? Duh. Here's where it gets cloudy. That same prohibition continues with “however, stores that sell firearms and ammunitions (e.g., outdoor stores and camping stores) will be permitted, provided they sell other products and the ads do not mention firearms, ammunition or other weapons.” I've seen mention that the manufacturer, Daniel Defense, has a brick and mortar store which sells branded merchandise like t-shirts but there is zero mention of that location anywhere on their site, at least none that I could find. Regardless of whether or not such an establishment exists this is not a store trying to sell their merchandise it's a manufacturer trying to sell its product, guns. This is a blatantly obvious distinction for anyone with a measureable IQ.

Then there's number 12 on the prohibited categories list, “Social cause/issue advocacy advertising.” Guns and gun rights are a major issue in the US, and one of the biggest issues in the country. They are a social issue, and a political issue, and if the NFL wishes to remain neutral on these issues they absolutely have that right, especially when it's clearly stated in their policy governing the issue at hand, advertising. This ad clearly tries to state an opinion on one side of a social issue, the owner and CEO of Daniel Defense made this crystal clear when he stated “We believe in the First Amendment, which is really the issue here. We are trying to exercise our First Amendment rights to give our opinion on the Second Amendment.” The NFL exists to make money, not to promote either side of any issue, period.

There's also the Constitutional aspect of the NFL's right to refuse the ad. The Supreme Court has recognized the implied Freedom of Association, closely linked to the Freedom Of Assembly, granted in the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights. That means anyone can choose to associate or choose not to associate with whomever they wish. This is the same Bill of Rights which grants the right to bear arms. The same Bill of Rights that Conservatives and the gun rights crowd claim to hold so dear, except when they don't.

Personally I think it's nothing more than a smart business decision. Daniel Defense knew the ad would be rejected and knew the resultant tried and true "liberals hate guns" hysteria amongst the terminally ignorant would spread their ad to more viewers online than would have seen it during the Superbowl without the million dollar price tag. The strategy worked like a charm because his target audience is that predictable, herd animals tend to act as one.

It's the same old song and dance from a group of people dishonest to their very core, with nothing to offer but lies, hysteria, hostility to all but their own, divisive politics, and plain old petty bullshit. Anything to cover their own record of ineffective uselessness.

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