Zeb Colter, an anti-immigrant character from World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) that has recently drawn the ire of right-wing pundits like Glenn Beck, would be right at home in the conservative media. Many of Colter's bigoted and flawed arguments have been the right's stock-in-trade for years.
Beck targeted the Colter character on his radio show, arguing that Colter is "demonizing the Tea Party." Beck also accused the WWE of "mocking me for standing up for the Constitution." Beck's co-host Stu Burguiere complained: "It seems that the villain, the guy you're supposed to hate, is this stereotype of a conservative that I've never met."
Colter currently appears on WWE programming alongside wrestler Jack Swagger, spouting a lot of heated anti-immigrant rhetoric in the middle of a scripted feud with Mexican-born wrestler Alberto Del Rio. According to WWE, Colter's rhetoric is intended to "to build the Mexican American character Del Rio into a hero given WWE's large Latino base."
WWE explains that in order "to create compelling and relevant content for our audience, it is important to incorporate current events into our storylines."
In the wake of President Obama's endorsement of marriage equality, right-wing media have criticized same-sex marriage by arguing that the children of heterosexual marriages fare better "economically, educationally, and emotionally" than children of same-sex partnerships. However, studies have shown that the "adjustment, development, and psychological well-being of children is unrelated to parental sexual orientation."
After waging an epic misinformation campaign during the debate over the Affordable Care Act and throughout the year following its signing, right-wing media have continued attacking the health care law, claiming that it is the "final nail in the coffin of this country" and that it "makes everyone a slave." As the two-year anniversary of the health care law approaches, Media Matters looks back at the right-wing media's latest attacks on health care reform.
In his February 10 Washington Times column, titled "End of the Constitution: Obamacare birth-control mandate would defeat the First Amendment," Jeffrey Kuhner called President Obama "an anti-Christian, anti-religious bigot" whose "goal is to purge Christianity from civil society, to marginalize religion from the public square." Kuhner's attack is in response to the president's announcement that he would require most employers to cover contraceptives for women. President Obama later announced an accommodation in which insurance companies would directly offer contraception coverage to employers who have religious objection to such coverage.
From the Times:
Is America sliding toward autocratic rule? This is the essential question of Barack Obama's presidency. Mr. Obama vowed to "fundamentally transform" the United States. Despite his incompetence and economic failure, the president is making good on his central promise: the destruction of our constitutional republic. He is trying - piece by painful piece - to reverse the legacy of the Founding Fathers.
His greatest assault, however, is on religious freedom. Fortunately, his latest effort sparked a rebellion. Mr. Obama had declared war not just on the Catholic Church, but on the First Amendment. The administration ordered almost all religious organizations to provide health insurance coverage that includes free birth control and sterilization procedures - even the morning-after pill, which can induce abortions. Otherwise, under Obamacare, Catholic hospitals, charities and universities would face major fines totaling millions of dollars. The choice was clear: Catholic institutions must either abandon their fundamental tenets or go bankrupt. The contraceptive mandate denied the conscience rights of the church. It was state-sanctioned coercion of private entities to act against their explicit religious beliefs. This is why it triggered such furor among Catholics and non-Catholics alike. If such basic liberties could be trampled on, then nothing - and no one - is safe from big government's crushing grip. Fortunately, a three-week outcry forced him to back off.
Like many on the radical left, Mr. Obama is an anti-Christian, anti-religious bigot. His goal is to purge Christianity from civil society, to marginalize religion from the public square. He essentially told the church that Washington, not the Vatican, will dictate how it must run its affairs and administer its social services. He demanded that Catholics sacrifice their beliefs on the altar of secular liberalism. The state - with him at its helm - is the new pagan church. Women's "reproductive health care" trumps Catholic positions on birth control and abortion. The fact that most health insurers already cover contraception and that it is widely available and accessible to women - just go to your local Walgreens - means nothing to feminists or the powerful abortion lobby. The real aim is to smash the Catholic Church as a bulwark against the sexual revolution, reducing it to a quisling of the liberal regime.
Catholic leaders rightly stood up. The Church understood it was under siege. That may not be over. Mr. Obama could win a second term. Hence, Obamacare - along with its contraceptive mandate - might not be repealed and may even expand. If so, he will have succeeded in giving birth to his Frankenstein monster: a post-constitutional, post-American soft tyranny.
In his January 26 Washington Times column, titled "Obama threatens religious liberty: Mandating contraception coverage violates the Christian conscience," Jeffrey Kuhner wrote that because of his "deep contempt for Christianity and democracy," President Obama "has declared war on the Catholic Church and religious liberty," a reference to a recent decision by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to not exempt certain religious institutions from a mandate that health insurance plans cover contraception and women's reproductive health. Kuhner further wrote that Obama is a "militant secularist" whose "aim is to purge religion from the public square."
From the Times:
Like many leftists, President Obama has deep contempt for Christianity and democracy. This is why his administration has declared war on the Catholic Church and religious liberty.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius recently went ahead and approved last year's decision to mandate that many religious organizations provide health insurance plans to their employees that include contraception, abortion-inducing drugs and sterilization coverage -- and this must be done without charging a co-pay. In other words, Mr. Obama has done something that is ominous and unprecedented: compelling religious groups to embrace and subsidize free birth control. Catholic universities, hospitals and charities must either betray their fundamental social teachings or drop insurance coverage for their employees, thereby triggering massive financial penalties under Obamacare. The choice is simple: Abandon Catholic doctrine or go out of business.
Mr. Obama is the most radical president in our history. He is spearheading a liberal social revolution, not just an economic one. He supported partial-birth abortion -- the heinous procedure of killing babies just before they are to be delivered. His administration refuses to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act. He has enabled homosexuals to serve openly in the military, transforming the armed forces into a vast laboratory for social engineering. His signature legislation, Obamacare, allows for the federal funding of abortion. Hence, Christians will be forced to have their tax dollars subsidize the mass murder of unborn children -- a direct attack on their most basic religious tenets. He is making Christians complicit in infanticide.
Mr. Obama is a militant secularist. His aim is to purge religion from the public square, forcing it to retreat into the private sphere -- making it nothing more than a personal lifestyle choice. He wants us to leave our faith at the door when engaging in civic life. Yet religion is natural to human beings. The only way radical progressives can forge a secular social order is through a repressive state.
The Obama administration is eroding the First Amendment, assaulting the conscience rights and religious liberties of Catholics and waging a relentless campaign to destroy America's Judeo-Christian values. Catholics must engage in civil disobedience. Otherwise, Mr. Obama will succeed in dismantling our republic. Today, he is coming for us. Tomorrow, it will be you.
In his January 19 Washington Times column titled, "Opposing Obama is not racist," Jeffrey Kuhner wrote that "the postmodern left has embraced identity politics. They view America as an irredeemably evil nation, an aggregation of oppressed groups victimized by the white power structure." From the Times:
Hurling the racism charge has been used by liberals for years as an ideological stick to bludgeon conservative critics. In our time, it is the equivalent of previously being called a witch or heretic: a libelous smear that, if it sticks, results in social ostracism. Yet, the fact that liberals are now repeatedly - and blindly - resorting to it is a sign of desperation. It shows they are unable to defend Mr. Obama's abysmal record. His presidency has been an utter failure.
For decades, the postmodern left has embraced identity politics. They view America as an irredeemably evil nation, an aggregation of oppressed groups victimized by the white power structure. Mr. Obama's presidency represents the logical culmination of identity politics. It is a kind of liberal fascism - everything is viewed through the lens of race. People are not distinct individuals; rather, they are members of an ethnic or racial tribe. The irony is as leftists run around screaming bigotry at every conservative in sight, they are revealing their own perverse obsession with race. The only racism they are exposing is their own.
Yet, Mr. Obama is a socialist bent on transforming America. This is why he has lost Middle America. By charging racism, the left is only further polarizing our nation along ideological and racial lines.
Few right-wing media outlets suffer more from Obama Derangement Syndrome than The Washington Times. Media Matters takes a look back at the Times' most outlandish, bizarre, and inflammatory attacks on President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama of 2011.
In his December 8 Washington Times column titled, "Being anyone but Barack: President has more in common with Vladimir than Teddy," Jeffrey Kuhner compared President Obama to Vladimir Lenin, leader of the Bolshevik Revolution, and wrote that if Obama "truly cared for working Americans, he would end his experiment in European-style socialism." From the Times:
In addition, [Obama's] administration's anti-business regulations -- discouraging offshore oil drilling, sanctioning Boeing for building a big plant in South Carolina, onerous labor and environmental mandates -- and virulent class warfare have undermined economic growth. His cynical decision to delay the Keystone XL pipeline has cost more than 20,000 jobs. The private sector -- the engine of prosperity and upward mobility -- has been savaged by bureaucratic sadism. If Mr. Obama truly cared for working Americans, he would end his experiment in European-style socialism.
Vladimir Lenin, the leader of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, rightly said that debauching the currency was one of "the surest means to destroy capitalism." Nothing destroys middle-class savings and consumer purchasing power better than inflation. It is the silent thief. Mr. Obama's spending-and-borrowing orgy has led to the massive printing of money. The Federal Reserve, under his direct encouragement, has systematically reduced the value of the dollar. The result is growing inflation and the steady erosion of America's standard of living. For Mr. Obama to claim he is a populist -- a tribune of the 99 percent against the hated 1 percent -- is akin to Madonna declaring she is the defender of chastity.
In a November 2 Washington Times review of Laura Ingraham's "Of Thee I Zing," Jeffrey Kuhner wrote that "homosexuality and sodomy have been elevated to the sacred status of marriage." Kuhner went on to write that "we have created a culture of death." From the Times:
This is the larger theme of Laura Ingraham's latest blockbuster, "Of Thee I Zing." The popular, nationally syndicated radio talk-show host is a rare breed in today's media landscape: a flinty cultural conservative who defends traditional America against the relentless assault of secular liberalism.
What Ms. Ingraham describes is the natural, almost inevitable culmination of the 1960s sexual revolution. Radical leftists championed personal liberation and a godless society. They began what they called the "long march through the institutions." They have succeeded. They now occupy the commanding heights of our culture - the dominant media, universities, public schools, Hollywood, television, the entertainment industry, nongovernmental organizations and the arts. Even many religious institutions have been infiltrated.
The result has been a sea of misery. Abortion has slaughtered nearly 50 million unborn babies. Millions have died from AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. Out-of-wedlock teenage births have skyrocketed. Divorce has soared. The family has broken down. Drugs, pornography and permissiveness are rampant. Homosexuality and sodomy have been elevated to the sacred status of marriage. In some school districts, such as in New York City, 10- and 11-year-old students are being taught all manner of sexual practices. In short, we have created a culture of death.
In his October 25 Washington Times column titled, "Obama's Arab winter, President plays active role in America's decline, Islam's rise," Jeffrey Kuhner wrote that "President Obama is empowering radical Islam across the Arab world," and that "Mr. Obama is simply managing America's decline." From the Times:
President Obama is empowering radical Islam across the Arab world. He is presiding over both the American decline and the rapid advance of our mortal jihadist enemies. From the Middle East to North Africa, the Arab Spring has turned into an Islamist winter. Contrary to the administration's claims, the popular uprisings have not led to a "rebirth of freedom" - the emergence of liberal democracies in distant Arab lands. Rather, Muslim fundamentalists have used street protests against corrupt, autocratic regimes as a Trojan horse to expand Islamic militancy.
Still, Mr. Obama's greatest failure is Iraq. He has ordered all U.S. troops to be withdrawn from that country by the end of the year - except for about 150 soldiers to protect our huge embassy in Baghdad. He is hailing the decision as a fulfillment of his 2008 campaign pledge. It is a betrayal of the more than 4,400 Americans who died in the war as well as the tens of thousands maimed and crippled.
The trend is clear: American power is in retreat. In its wake are the new invading barbarians.
Like emperors in the final days of Rome, our leaders can pretend that the barbarians pose no imminent threat. Everyone knows, however, that Mr. Obama is simply managing America's decline. His warm embrace of the Arab Spring as a pro-democracy movement simply camouflages the sad reality of our time: The Islamists are rising, threatening freedom wherever they tread.
In his October 20 Washington Times column titled, "The United States of Mexico? Endgame of multiculturalism looms: Hispanic reacquisition of the Southwest," Jeffrey Kuhner wrote that American high school students learning Spanish "is a form of national self-hatred and self-abnegation." Kuhner also wrote that the students, who were given an assignment to learn the Mexican national anthem, were "being indoctrinated to revere and pledge their loyalty to a foreign government," and called the lesson "treasonous." From the Times:
American students now pledge allegiance to Mexico. They sing its na- tional an- them. And it is sanctioned by the state of Texas. Sound absurd? It is. Last month in a Spanish class at Achieve Early College High School in McAllen, Texas, students recited the Mexican pledge of allegiance and were instructed to memorize the Mexican anthem. Moreover, they had to wear red, white and green - the colors of the Mexican flag - as they fulfilled their class assignment. Public high schools no longer promote American patriotism, but they are doing a superb job of cultivating loyalty to Mexico.
This is treasonous; American students are being indoctrinated to revere and pledge their loyalty to a foreign government. Such is the logical consequence of multiculturalism and modern liberalism.
Decades ago, students learning Spanish would recite the pledge of allegiance to America or sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" in that foreign language. No more. Our education establishment thinks displays of patriotism are signs of "nativism" and "xenophobia." Textbooks regularly teach that America is a nation founded upon racism, sexism, imperialism and genocide. Therefore, students must be taught to appreciate - and respect - foreign peoples and Third World cultures. This is a form of national self-hatred and self-abnegation.
Moreover, this is part of the Hispanicization of America. Since 1990, nearly 20 million illegal aliens have crossed our porous southern border. If one adds legal immigration, the foreign-born population is nearly 40 million. America essentially has imported an entire subculture the size of a major European nation. This is the most dramatic cultural transformation in one generation in history. Our political class is engaged in a dangerous social experiment - one that threatens to destroy our country.
In his October 6 Washington Times column titled, "Obama's October revolution," Jeffrey Kuhner used the Occupy Wall Street movement to attack President Obama, claiming "Mr. Obama has unleashed class hatred and racial hostility in the pursuit of state socialism" and that his 2008 campaign slogan "was really a thinly veiled rallying cry, not to save the nation, but to precipitate the downfall of American capitalism." From The Washington Times:
President Obama's shock troops are marching in the streets. Occupy Wall Street - a movement composed of communists, anarchists, socialists and anti-globalization student radicals - is spreading. Protests have swelled in cities including New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Chicago, Denver and Philadelphia. The protesters are gaining influence and numbers. A ragtag group of hippie students has turned into a potent political force.
Hence, Occupy Wall Street is not a spontaneous uprising of disenchanted citizens frustrated with corporate plutocracy and capitalist excess. Rather, it is a planned, manufactured attempt to prop up Mr. Obama's failed presidency. It is a page taken straight from the Alinsky playbook: Demonize bankers and businessmen in order to divert attention from the real source of our economic woes, Mr. Obama's policies.
The president inherited a recession, and he has deepened it. His out-of-control spending and trillion-dollar deficits have brought us to the brink of bankruptcy. America's debt credit rating has been downgraded. Growth has slowed to less than 1 percent. Unemployment has risen above 9 percent. Inflation is rising as consumer confidence declines. Obamacare is strangling job creation and business investment. Mr. Obama has waged war upon the private sector. If those students are truly angry about joblessness and a bleak future, they should direct their fury at the president.
Mr. Obama has unleashed class hatred and racial hostility in the pursuit of state socialism. It is clear that his 2008 campaign slogan of "hope and change" was really a thinly veiled rallying cry, not to save the nation, but to precipitate the downfall of American capitalism.
In his September 22 Washington Times column, Jeffrey Kuhner claimed Obama is "facing an internal revolt" because "he has not dismantled corporate power" but instead is creating a government modeled after "President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini." From The Washington Times:
It is not just conservatives who are angry with Mr. Obama. Radicals are also seething. They view him as shallow and inept. After once deifying him as the liberal messiah, they feel betrayed - by both his incompetence and his deviations from socialist priorities.
In their eyes, Mr. Obama has abandoned key leftist causes. He extended the George W. Bush-era tax cuts. He agreed to leave the public option out of his massive health care overhaul. He has backed away (for now) from pushing "cap-and-trade" legislation. He failed to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. And he has not dismantled corporate power; rather, through huge bailouts and the acceptance of lucrative campaign donations, Mr. Obama has developed a cozy relationship with Wall Street. He talks like a class-warfare populist, but he governs like a liberal corporatist.
His model is not George McGovern or even Jimmy Carter but President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini. Mr. Obama's goal is to erect a corporatist state. He seeks to fuse big government, big business and big labor under a centralized command-and-control system.
The Washington Times published an illustration of President Obama's face on late singer Amy Winehouse's body to illustrate a column by Jeffrey Kuhner that claimed Obama is "injecting the heroin of class warfare and socialism into our national bloodstream," which will lead to "insanity and death." This is just the latest outrageous Photoshopped image or illustration published by the Times to attack Obama.
In a September 8 Washington Times column, Jeffrey Kuhner claimed that President Obama is a "reckless ideologue masquerading as a pragmatist" and is "injecting the heroin of class warfare and socialism into our national bloodstream" which will lead to "insanity and death." From the Washington Times:
President Obama is politically insane. This is the real meaning of his speech Thursday night in front of a joint session of Congress. Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different result. By that definition, Mr. Obama is a lunatic leftist.
Much of his speech called for more of the same - government activism; massive spending on infrastructure, bridges and roads; extending the payroll tax cut; and more public aid to states and municipalities. In short, he seeks to perpetuate the dismal policies of Obamanomics. He is a reckless ideologue masquerading as a pragmatist.
Mr. Obama is a man of the hard left. He deeply loathes everything America stands for - capitalism, limited government, individual freedom and Christian civilization. In particular, he despises our exceptionalism. His stated goal is to create a "post-American world" where the United States is simply one of many countries - no bigger, better or stronger. He exhibits a form of madness, a self-loathing, reminiscent of the late pop singer Amy Winehouse. Mr. Obama keeps injecting the heroin of class warfare and socialism into our national bloodstream. And he can continue to play on the biggest stage and boast a huge audience. In the end, however, it leads to the same result: insanity and death.
The column also featured Obama's face photoshopped on to recently deceased singer Amy Winehouse's body, with a sickle-and-hammer tattoo added to her body: