The Destructive Nature of Republican Lies.

On February 11, 2013, Democratic Perspective addressed some of the most insidious lies told by Republicans and their Tea Party allies, and the long-term effect of those lies. We began by revisiting the birthers.

As you may remember, the issue of President Obama’s citizenship arose during the 2008 Democratic primary. It was allegedly started by someone in the Hillary Clinton campaign as her chances began to fade. Of course, the Obama campaign immediately addressed the attack by posting a copy of his birth certificate on the Internet. The copy was supplied by the State of Hawaii.

Shortly afterward, the Obama campaign posted newspaper clippings of Obama’s birth announcement taken from two Honolulu newspapers. The issue seemed settled…until the McCain campaign raised the issue again in the general election.

Since that time, Republicans, particularly Tea Party Republicans, have not let it die. There have been lawsuits asking for the 2008 election results to be overturned. Led by people like Orly “Birther” Taitz, Rep. Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Donald Trump and Sheriff Joe Arpaio, conservatives have used the “controversy” to claim that President Obama’s presidency is illegitimate. Therefore, they surmise, they do not have to accept any of Obama’s policies.

Apparently, some actually believe that Obama was born in Kenya and that, through some decades-long conspiracy, he was able to falsify his birth certificate, plant birth announcements in the newspapers, and force Hawaiian officials to lie on his behalf…all so he could force his Kenyan socialist agenda on the US. You’ll find these theories and more on a myriad of blogs and websites and you’ve heard them repeated ad nauseum on right wing radio and TV.

So what is the impact of all this?

As mentioned, the lie has given conservatives a reason to vilify the president, even before he entered office. It has given them reason to suspect that he has a hidden anti-American agenda. During his first weeks in office, it led them to protest a speech intended for school children as “indoctrination” (something previous presidents have done without controversy).

The lie has caused conservatives to suspect sinister motives behind every initiative and every attempt to right the economy following one of the worst economic collapses in history. And it has caused them to heap blame on President Obama for problems caused by the previous administration.

Of course, this is all the result of just one lie. There have been hundreds more. And each of them has had a similar effect.

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