by John Hawkins | June 12, 2006 4:11 pm
The left is still furious with Ann Coulter because of her comments about the Jersey Girls — which just proves her point. Granted, she went too far when she said:
“I’ve never seen people enjoying their husbands’ deaths so much.”
But, if she’d have said they were exploiting their husbands’ deaths for personal and political gain, would she have been wrong? No, she would have been spot-on.
The Jersey Girls and for that matter, Cindy Sheehan & Max Cleeland, are not popular on the left because they have anything valuable to say. To the contrary, they’re popular because they’re cynical enough to shamefully use the tragedies that have befallen them for political purposes.
Take the Jersey Girls. The left likes to use them as spokesmen because if anyone criticizes them, as Coulter has done, liberals can pretend to be horrified by it. “How dare people criticize them! They lost their husbands on 9/11!”
Same thing with Cindy Sheehan. Here we have an unimpressive kook who is useful to the left solely because her son died in Iraq. Can anyone even pretend that they’d care about what Cindy Sheehan had to say otherwise?
Then there’s Max Cleeland. He’s just another Senator who lost an election. So, why do the Democrats like him so much? Because he lost limbs in Vietnam. That’s it. All the left wants out of Cleland is a chance to go, “Look, they’re being mean to a man who was crippled in the service of his country.”
There are those that compare the Jersey Girls, Sheehan, and Cleland to John Walsh — which is, of course, horribly unfair to Walsh. Yes, he lost a son and that inspired him to try to help children who were the victims of crime. But, is going after criminals supposed to be a partisan endeavor now? When Walsh is criticized, does he tear up, and demand that he be exempt from criticism because his son died? No, he stands on his own two feet and makes his case. You could say exactly the same thing about Candy Lightner, the founder of Mothers Against Drunk Driving who decided to create MADD after losing her son to a drunk driver. There’s a world of difference between people like Lightner and Walsh — and — the Jersey Girls and Sheehan.
The Jersey Girls, Cindy Sheehan, and Cleland are attempting to prey on people’s better natures. You’re supposed to throw all logic and thought out the window and simply vote democratic because you pity them. Is this what politics should be about? Are we going to start wheeling out children with cancer to promote health care bills? Maybe the Democrats can find an Eskimo whose husband died by falling off an oil rig so they can make her the party spokesman against ANWR.
What it all comes down to is that grief isn’t unique. What happened to Cindy Sheehan’s son? It’s tragic. The death of the Jersey Girls’ husbands? That was horrible. But, almost every person reading this page has lost someone that they deeply loved at one time or another. Most people just have enough class not to trivialize the deaths of their loved ones by turning that loss into the centerpiece of a set of partisan talking points.
Update #1: Here’s more from Doc Rampage on this subject:
“First of all note that “she is enjoying her husband’s death” is not the same as “she is glad her husband died”. I can enjoy eating a sandwich that fell on the floor without being glad that it fell on the floor, and someone can enjoy the perks of having their husband dead without being glad that he is dead.
Second, people often do enjoy the perks of grief. Some people enjoy it a great deal. Women have deliberately harmed and even killed their own children because they enjoy the perks and attention of grieving. In fact, this practice is common enough to have a name: Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy.
Third, it isn’t that outrageous to look at a woman’s behavior after her husband’s death and conclude that she is enjoying herself. Imagine a woman who starts out poor and marries a rich older man for his money but the man turns out to be a miser and never lets her spend money. When her husband dies, she starts spending money wildly on shoes, clothes, and exotic vacations. She takes a young good-looking lover and is seen with him all over town gushing over him. Wouldn’t it be fair to say that this woman is enjoying her husbands death? It might not be polite to say it, but it would be a reasonable conclusion to draw from the evidence, would it not?
The case for the Jersey Widows is even stronger than it is for the gold digger. The Widows became rich and famous, not merely because their husband’s death released them, but by directly exploiting the circumstances of their husband’s death. They used their husband’s death to get attention, to get invited to all the right parties, and to get fawned over on TV.
Any unbiased observer would have to agree that the Jersey Widows do seem to be enjoying their husband’s death, but that doesn’t justify saying so. There are codes of proper conduct, and just because something is true, that doesn’t justify saying it.”
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