Are liberals becoming so desperate and deranged that they’re no longer intellectually capable of recognizing their comic hypocrisy? Exhibit A: The Washington Post’s Eugene Robinson.
Opponents of the proposed Ground Zero mosque in New York accept proponents’ right to build there, but correctly point out that having a right to do something doesn’t make it the right thing to do. According to Robinson, however, opponents are guilty of “lies, distortions, jingoism, xenophobia.” Robinson also claims that “opportunistic” mosque opponents “obviously do not” understand that “we have a Bill of Rights that protects our freedoms against the whims of public opinion.”
That was Robinson on Tuesday, August 17 – just last week.
Fast forward one week, and Robinson is singing a different tune. Perhaps what remained of his intellectual hard drive was wiped clean. In his commentary today, Robinson labels Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally this weekend on the national mall in Washington, D.C. an “in-your-face” event, and says it “is obviously intended to be a provocation.” And just like the mosque opponents he demonizes, he suddenly emphasizes the difference between having a right and doing what’s right:
Let me state clearly that Glenn Beck has every right to hold his absurdly titled ‘Restoring Honor’ rally on Saturday. But the rest of us have every right to call the event what it is: an exercise in self-aggrandizement on a Napoleonic scale.”
Obviously, Robinson’s substantive critique of the Restoring Honor rally is no more rational than his attacks on Ground Zero mosque opponents. It’s remarkable, however, how quickly Robinson began to distinguish a right to do something versus doing what he considers to be the right thing. It’s possible, of course, that Robinson suddenly saw the light and understood the folly of his attacks against Ground Zero mosque opponents. Unfortunately, it’s more likely that he merely suffers from hypocrisy and severe intellectual vertigo.