Friday, September 30, 2005

"Morally Reprehensible" Debate

I am sorry to give you another long bit of literature, but I have been keeping up on the outrage over former Secretary Bennett's comment on his radio program the other day. I think that Sean Hannity and Bennett made some very good points about the nature of debate in our society on Hannity and Colmes, so here's the transcript.

Now, obviously, what Bennett said the other day sounds like a horrible thought. It sounds like he said that African Americans are the cause of crime in our society. That is taking it out of context. He was trying to show why a certain type of logic is flawed, thus, he presented the argument as an example of flawed logic.

I would add that no one should accuse Bennett of being a racist. As he himself points out, he has worked for education in underprivileged communities and he believes that poverty affects all races.

If nothing else, read his explanation at the beginning of the transcript. I will leave you with his quotation from the end which I think is very telling about the lack of debate in our society:

What I say to them, Sean, is if they were given the impression that I, you know, am in favor of such a horrible idea as, you know, my critics are suggesting, they need to look at the whole quote. I don't believe that. And I'm sorry that people have misrepresented my views so much that that has given folks that impression. You're right about a person's life. I've got a life, you know, take me in the totality of my actions and I'll tell you, I will stand with my record.

"One must be very careful one gets into these arguments and we try to do it. But, you know, we try on this show to do serious and controversial issues. And it's a big country and it's a free country. We don't put liberals down. We don't put people down with whom we disagree. We talk about serious things in a serious way. And if you're not allowed to talk about these subjects, then it's not the country it's supposed to be.

"You've got to be able to condemn these horrible ideas as I did."


Will said...

Hey, Esther! Good to hear from you, and thanks for directing me over here. I hope everything is going well in Bloomington, and my (very, very belated) congratulations!

Will said...

Sorry about your difficulties with a job--good luck!

little-cicero said...

I just wrote on this this morning.
Bennet inspired me, along with Hugh Hewitt to create my blog, so there's a connection with him that forced me to write an atypically long post on the controversial statement. Hopefully my patience invoked some eloquence in this post.

HuskerFoley7 said...

Oh, that thing made me so mad! It was clear he was just trying to point out how ridiculous saying something like that would be and everyone is up in arms. Grrrr, stupid people shouldn't be allowed to have opinions.... I don't mean Bennet, by the way, I mean his critics.