There's a great article in Salon.com this morning that begs a question that was posed right here on this little experiment of mine a couple of months ago: When did the people on the left completely lose their sense of humor?
The peg for the Salon piece is all the wailing and gnashing of teeth from liberals over the recent New Yorker cover which depicts -- satirically, in case anyone was in doubt -- Barack and Michelle Obama as a couple of Black Panthers-cum-Muslim extremists. Gary Kamiya hits the argument right on the head when he says:
"A couple of points need to be made about this. Yes, the right wing is obviously trying to paint Obama as a Muslim terrorist sympathizer -- it's the only card they have to play. And yes, there are ways that the mainstream media can, and has, "laundered" such scurrilous smears -- Fox News is expert at them. ("Tonight at 8: Is Obama a Muslim fanatic, or merely a white-hating traitor? We report, you decide.") But it should be obvious that there's a fundamental difference between mocking something and laundering it. Some on the left, however, are so terrified that Americans, in their cosmic stupidity, cannot distinguish between satire and smear that they reject satire. After Obama wins, they decree, there will be time for all the sophisticated ha-ha. But right now, imagery must be as tightly controlled as at an exhibition of Stalinist Realism paintings. As Ari Fleischer said, we must all watch what we do, watch what we say."
Take a look:
(Salon.com: "Rush Limbaugh was Right," by Gary Kamiya/7.15.08)
(DXM: Why So Serious?/4.25.08)