Macon County Chronicle - Opinion / Blogs
The Passing of Tim Russert
The sudden passing of NBC newsman and journalist Tim Russert has made me feel as if I have lost a personal friend.
I loved this guy. This man was no ordinary man, far from it, yet what made him so special was his “everyman” appeal. Russert was the last best hope for unbiased journalism and there is no one out there that can take his place.
His loss is almost palpable as I, like many of you I’m sure, watched the tributes given to Russert on MSNBC this past Father’s Day weekend. Because Tim Russert was such a devoted son and father, the timing of his death is all the more bittersweet. While watching the many interviews that he gave during the promotional tour he did for his two bestselling books, I was moved to tears over and over as the full measure of the man was proven time and again.
Whatever your own personal political bent might be, there was no doubt that Tim Russert played it as fair as any human being possibly could. During the last several months of the seemingly endless presidential primaries Russert was the one interviewer that would ask, and get the answers, to the toughest and most critical questions of the day. He never embarrassed his subjects but he sometimes got them to embarrass themselves. Just remember the question of driver’s licenses for illegals that may have been the one thing that cast the first doubt on the inevitability of Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid.
The remainder of this historical election year will not be the same, and it will be missing the best and most honest voice it had among the many partisan voices out there. Tim Russert will be missed perhaps more greatly than any politician or celebrity that he covered. I know one thing, he was certainly a role model for young journalists today, and dare I say even for young politicians as well. The haunting Bruce Springsteen ballad “You’re missing”, which MSNBC played as a backdrop to Sunday’s Tim Russert tribute, seemed to have been written just for him. It was the most fitting choice of songs to play, as The Boss was his very favorite artist. It is such a profoundly sad time for his family, and his family of colleagues and viewers as well.
I have two words for those of you who are wavering between voting for John McCain or Barack Obama for president this November. Supreme Court. The latest abominable decision handed down from the highest court in the land gives enemy combatants at Guantanamo Bay full access to our country’s civil court system, all but ensuring another circus like atmosphere that pervaded our nation when terrorist Zachariah Moussaoui abused the system a few years ago. And the decision by the high court? A 5-4 ruling that now paves the way for the 200 or so violent jihadists that now live at Gitmo to arm themselves with a coterie of high profile lawyers looking to make names for themselves at the expense of the American people. These terrorists are masters at manipulating the sense of decency that most Americans possess into a guilt -ridden shame for incarcerating them that their lawyers will try to exploit.
Of the original 800 or so original terrorists housed at Gitmo, all but 200 have been released and many have shown back up on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, killing Americans. This ruling is the most boneheaded ruling the court has made in a long time and we can thank Anthony Kennedy, John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, John Souter, and Steven Breyer for giving constitutional rights not to prisoners of war, but to enemy combatants. These men wear no uniform and fight for no country. They live to kill innocent human beings for a perverted idealization of their religious beliefs. The men on the correct side of the vote were Chief Justice John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia, and Clarence Thomas. Thank God for them. They are just outnumbered by the liberal majority. We must have another conservative justice appointed in the next presidential term! Nothing less than our national security is at stake. While McCain is certainly no conservative his choices for Supreme Court nominees will most assuredly be better than the far left Barack Obama’s will be.
Random ramblings… Am I the only one that simply cannot stand another news report of horrendous weather, earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods? We seem to get desensitized when we constantly hear of these heartbreaking stories and that can’t be good…and hurricane season is just beginning!