WARNING: My filter has been permanently removed. (and this time I think it may just be broken beyond repair) My Good Greek Girl disclaimer:
I did not personally know Andrew Breitbart, nor do I claim to be an expert on anything Andrew. This is just my humble opinion about the behavior surrounding his recent sad passing.
I was shocked as many were to learn about the passing of conservative blogger, publisher, author, and political commentator Andrew Breitbart. He was many things to many people, to some he was a fearless leader and to others he was a mortal enemy. Whatever you may have thought of him, he was an innovator, a pioneer, creative, and brave. He was not afraid to talk about what he believed, or to passionately disagree with those who reviled in ridiculing him. There is a lesson to be learned here folks, the question that keeps popping up in my Greek Noggin is, will anyone pay attention?
What am I rambling about? Well I am personally saddened by the news. Because not only did I admire Andrew Breitbart for his courage and creativity, but also because I met him at an event I performed at in 2010. He was down to earth, kind and gracious. Even though he was running late to leave, he continued to stop to pose for pictures with his admirers. There was everyone from little kids to little old ladies and everything in between… and little old me. He gave a rousing speech that day, and he did as he always did, he inspired and fired up his audience. He had a way of cutting to the facts, speaking the truth, and standing on his convictions regardless of the consequences. He was known to be hot headed at times, and even polarizing especially to those who lived to taunt him. However the thing I noticed was even though he was all of those things, I am not aware of him acting like an animal in his disagreement with others.
I started to notice a disturbing trend Thursday in the news media, via twitter, facebook and all the usual suspects. Just to be sure I was remembering correctly I went back and re-read some articles, and even his own twitter feed. “This is War” he would often say, and as we know in any war, things can get bloody down in the trenches. He would often re-tweet the horrible things those who opposed him would tweet to him. It appeared he reviled in it, as if it let him know he was getting to his opponents. One thing I saw was consistent though, it is one thing to disagree with someone and to be passionate, it is quite another to hurl malicious evil obscenities and death threats. Something those who opposed him did on a regular basis. Although he was himself fighting a war and bold in his arguments, defense of himself or in making his points, he did not behave in a grotesque manner.
This is what I find so troublesome. How did we get to the point where one side is demanding to be treated fairly, equally and to be heard? Yet these same people will not tolerate an opposing opinion? Why can we not have a civil discussion about the dreaded social topics, politics or religion without vilianizing and or demonizing the other person, and making them our enemy?!? Why did it have to be a war in the first place? Who is it that decided that there should be this systematic brainwashing of an entire nation into one political ideology anyway? No I’m not looking at the world through my kumbyah rosy colored glasses, but seriously… When did we stop being human beings to each other? When did we stop all being Americans free to be or think whatever we choose, and instead have to live in fear of being ridiculed for having our own opinion?
I was disgusted with some of the things tweeted after the news of his passing spread.
The straw that broke the Greek Girls back and I think the thing that may just have permanently removed my filter this time was the Rolling Stone website article. Regardless of anyone’s political ideology for the love of God – WHERE is the DECENCY?????? This was totally uncalled for. Personally I think the “_____” in this case is the writer Matt Taibbi.
Some examples of tweets to @andrewbreitbart:
@dufus: Did we cry when Hitler died? No.. #Breitbart see you in hell asshole
@jeffglasse: Andrew Breitbart now enjoying afternoon tea with Hitler #goodriddanceyouhack
@andrewbreitbart: I don’t support drawing disgusting cartoons to gain publicity over it. But nice to know u stand firmly behind Muslim hate.
Josh M @TheSocialest : Good riddance Breitbart. Hopefully they put James O’Keefe in your casket.
Natasha Yar-Routh @xiomberg : Andrew Breitbart is dead, good riddance to bad trash. He was a vile excuse for a human being
John Kapp @johnkapp : Andrew Breitbart was a racist, sexist, homophobe. Good riddance.
Andrew Breitbart is dead. “Good! F*ck him.” Why
@mtaibbi couldn’t be happier:http://bitly.com/xZXP9W
That should be enough to illustrate my point. I don’t care what your beliefs are, what political party you subscribe to, what your sexual orientation is, or what your religion or non-religion is, no human being should be spoke to or written about that way – period. Have any of these seriously misguided people who tweeted this hatred ever heard the saying, “what goes around comes back around” or how about “do unto others as you would have done to you”? The lesson to be learned here is that this is no way to talk to anyone, period. You can disagree with people, and still have a conversation. In case anyone who would be inclined to agree with these hateful individuals, need I remind you the definition of a conversation. Lets go to the Merriam Webster Dictionary for the definition shall we?
Conversation: a (1) : oral exchange of sentiments, observations, opinions, or ideas (2) : an instance of such exchange : talk <a quietconversation>b : an informal discussion of an issue by representatives of governments, institutions, or groups
The Greek Girl has another word these people should revisit…
Tolerance: sympathy or indulgence for beliefs or practices differing from or conflicting with one’s own.
Since so many of Breitbart’s haters demand this word. Possibly they should revisit the definition and realize that the measuring stick they are using to measure Breitbart and other’s they disagree with, points right back at them. If you demand tolerance then you should also be able to give tolerance. If you disagree with someone, anyone whether it be a media figure, your neighbor, your brother, your mother, I don’t care who it is… Act like a human being. Have a fricking civil conversation, exchange ideas, have a healthy debate even, but do not ever villify or demonize those who have different opinions than you do.
That is a very slippery slope my friends. If we do that, then we essentially are saying to each other, just keep your opinions to yourself, it’s easier that way. Where will that lead us? Some of the most brilliant partnerships, inventions and ideas have come from people who have different points of view. That is where the magic and genius can happen. I don’t know, call me crazy but I believe it is wrong to hate someone just because they do not share your ideology. I also believe it is also wrong to try to silence someone just because you do not agree with them. Last time I checked, we were living in America. Good men and women fought and bled and died for that freedom. When ignorant people espouse vitriolic hatred just because they do not agree, they disrespect and dishonor that freedom.
In honor of Andrew Breitbart’s fearlessness for speaking out about what he believed in,
I have decided to be fearless myself and to post the original “controversial?” video version of my song “We The People”. I jokingly say “controversial” because I don’t see anything controversial about capturing the essence of a movement. To illustrate through pictures the story of how people in September of 2009 decided to stand up and speak out against what they saw as the America they knew and loved being threatened. To stand in support of the United States Constitution.
As a songwriter, that is my job, to write about the things I see around me and feel. Yes
it may have offended people who do not share the sentiments of the Tea Party, but controversial? I hardly think so… I lost bookings, friends, and even opportunities over the video. My intention was to capture “the movement” in the video, which I think it did. My song was not written about left or right, it was written about right and wrong. So stand up for what you believe in no matter what it is like Andrew did. Yes, and even speak out with those who might not share your beliefs… but do so with respect, and treat people – all people even if you disagree with dignity.
Goodbye Andrew Breitbart, your words and your mission will live on in those you gave a voice to, you’re in the arms of the angels now.
Blessings, Love & Music ~
An interesting post Ava. Perhaps you should have put something in there for all of us folks who did not know the man or what it is that he did specifically? Something like, “a conservative website editor and author Andrew Breitbart, who died unexpectedly Thursday at age 43” or something along those lines.
Gives a little insight as to what he was about and all.
As for the trolls or people haters, and the comments, I get them all the time, but I seldom publish them or give the offenders a audience or a platform. Where there is no firewood, there is no fire. That kind of deal.
Thank you for the comment and the insight, you know that is a great idea! it slipped my noggin for sure. I will think of where to edit that… have a wonderful day – thank you for reading! Blessings! xo
Amen. Well said. We need more civility, less polarization.
Very nice, heartfelt tribute, Ava.
Andrew is smiling.