Fox News vs. Mister Rogers

fox vs rogers

May 16, 2013

I’ve had my fair share of gripes about Fox News. They went after the Muppets and Sesame Street. They’ve championed the Second Amendment despite overwhelming evidence of the dangers of firearms without sensible gun control. They’re an unabashed arm of the Republican Party, if not the controlling force behind it. In every way, shape, and form, Fox News represents dishonesty and an antithesis to journalism.

But now they went after Fred Rogers.

Misters Rogers…

This… will not stand. I don’t care if the clip is a few years old. This is a crime.

If you have the stomach, check out the following clip.

In essence, the Fox hosts here are reporting on a study (actually a single professor just talking) on how Mister Roger’s message of “You’re special just the way you are” has created generations of lazy, self-interested little socialists and he’s also the reason American children don’t do well in school.

It couldn’t possibly be because of far right-wing hijacking of history and critical thinking or a culture that promotes mediocre achievements and fawns over anyone who’s “famous,” could it?

Fox going after Mister Rogers is another piece of evidence that shows the American Far Right has lost its collective mind in the last several years. Things like compassion and empathy have already been vilified on the Right, but to overtly say that a man like Fred Rogers is evil is a bit like saying the Dalai Lama eats puppies and can’t achieve climax without thinking of the Holocaust.

The Right has been hijacked by Randian “ethics” in that a person’s worth is tied to his or her bank account and how much he or she resembles the “superman” who cares not for morals but only self-interest. Modern American conservatism has been led down the path of the Tea Party, of might-makes-right, of thinking businesses are people and people can be shot simply for not being citizens. Mister Rogers’ message is a splash of cold water on those beliefs.

Charity? Sharing? Togetherness? These have no place on the American Right!

Mister Rogers is the closest thing this world has had to a physical saint in a long time. The man had a message of hope and peace that endures after his passing. He taught millions of children, myself included, that we are special. Every child, every person, is a unique individual.

Of course, there’s also a major difference between “You’re a special person,” and “You never have to try to achieve anything.” The second is a strawman by Fox. Mister Roger never implied anything like that. He never said you should get things just for asking. He said you should have a feeling of self-worth no matter what.

And on a personal note, I was raised on Mister Rogers, Sesame Street, and Doctor Spock, all things these brain cases complained about. Guess what? Dean’s List in college, am in a loving, long-term relationship, and I’ve got the drive to publish my work on Randomology.org, here, and in my upcoming book. And I teach college and middle school courses.

I know I’m special. Mister Rogers told me so. Fox News? I’m sure even Mister Rogers would hesitate before telling them they’re special.

Actually, I’m pretty sure they are “special.” They’re a very special channel with very special people.

Let’s all remember Fred Rogers for what he was: one of the most decent human beings to ever live among us.

The Final Randomology Post

I GIVE UP!
I GIVE UP!

April 1, 2013

After a long week of soul-searching, I’ve realized that I’ve made a terrible mistake. This entire website has been an exercise in futility and I’m going to pack it in.

I’ve realized that it truly is impossible to fight against the forces of conservatism and ignorance. They are just too strong. They have talk radio and major news outlets and they can scream really loudly. And that scares me. I don’t want people to think I’m a baby-killing pagan communist anymore.

To that end, I will do the only rational thing. I will shut up. For good.

This website will stand as a monument to my stupidity and hubris. How could I have thought for a second that I could make a difference?!

I should apologize to Glenn Beck for years of mocking him and thinking he was insane for thinking there was some vast conspiracy at work. There has to be. It makes perfect sense that he alone would have the vision to put together this web of lies that are ruling our lives.

I should also apologize to Fox News. I know I’ve said they’re the spawn of evil and deception in the world, but they’re not. I mean, they say everything so loudly and repeat it over and over again. It has to be true, right?

I’d like to apologize to the American Right Wing. I know you guys just want to make sure others can’t worship or lives their lives as they see fit, so I think you should just go ahead and do that. It’s exhausting hearing you.

But most of all, I want to apologize to my students and everyone who thought that writing, and critical thinking and expression could make a dent in the world. This is a cold, hard reality and it needs equally cold and hard people. Compassion, understanding, and curiosity have no place in it.

So, there you have it. Randomology is dead. And it failed. I’ll see you…

Well, I won’t. Just…

Bye. I’ll be leaving on a bus later today and heading to Alaska so that I may sit at the feet of Sarah Palin and learn a thing or two.

Gay Marriage Final Word?

Enough is enough, people!
Enough is enough, people!

March 29, 2013

I was going to post a video of this, but I’m going to just write it.

Gay rights, or rights in general, are of concern to every single one of us. Not just the gay community. If we say that we can deny rights to one group of people based on what makes a few people feel icky, then it opens the floodgates to a LOT of oppression.

I’ve seen four general arguments against gay marriage in the last few days, and, quite frankly, they’re fraking stupid.

Gay marriage is against the Bible.

You know what else is against the Bible?

  1. Tattoos
  2. Wearing gold
  3. Not stoning your children when they disobey
  4. Marrying a non-virgin
  5. Bacon
  6. Touching the skin of a pig
  7. Not paying government dues (taxes)

There. Done. End of story. Stop cherry-picking.

If men can marry men and women can marry women, soon, people will be able to marry turtles, dogs, cats, children, or multiple people.

Marriage, in the legal definition, is a social contract between two people. Two gay adults are legally capable of giving consent for such an action. A dog, turtle, or child cannot do this. As for polygamy? If the adults are all fine with it, I actually have little reason to deny something like this. Of course, this might create a few legal knots.

Marriage has always been between one man and one woman.

False. Marriage has been MOSTLY within one man and one woman. However, various cultures have had some form of what we would today call gay marriage. Even in the 19th century, what we might call romantic gay relationships were not uncommon or even frowned upon.

The Bible itself has various definitions of what constitutes marriage and what is acceptable. Nearly none of these definitions would be socially acceptable today. A lot of things in the Bible were meant for another time, and many people pick and choose which ones they don’t like. Again, see the first entry. Or this article.

Gay marriage will ruin America (children will suffer/ families will crumble/ blah blah blah)

Oh, I’m sorry. Is that like how giving everyone votings rights made white people’s voting rights matter less? Or how freeing the slaves made freedom less valuable since no more people had it?

Shut up, you marriage hipster.

Children from gay couples actually do quite well. The reason they have it hard? Bigots make it hard for them. But you’re right. They should just not tell anyone about their parents. And gay couples shouldn’t have children. Families, after all are sacred. That’s why we make sure that couples that want to get married can have children and are stable before they procreate, right?

The Right lost the culture wars. That’s it. Suck it up, move along, or get left behind. If you don’t, there are some lovely areas of the American Southwest where you can establish your own little cult.

Idiots.

Teachers, Guns, and the Big Lie

If we’re going to have gun debate, and if we’re going to be adults, we need to get a few facts straight. Like I’ve said before, we’re entitled to our own opinions, but we’re not entitled to our own facts. If we do this and remember to respect each other, we should be fine.

With that in mind, we need to clear up a few “facts” about gun control.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve seen many on the pro-gun side posting pictures of Israeli teachers armed with rifles. You can see one such picture above. These individuals point to it and say it’s a beautiful thing to see a country determined and willing to protect its youth, that it shows our cowardice when we don’t arm our own teachers.

Read the full article here.