By DOUG PATTON
Cagle News Syndicate
"We have met the enemy, and he is us." -- Pogo
What's more chilling than a people oppressed by a Hitler, a Mao or a Stalin? A people that voluntarily oppresses itself, a reality that has now afflicted America.
We have watched over the last 40 years as American women have gone -- willingly in most cases -- into abortion mills to destroy one-third of a generation.
We have seen speech codes pop up on college campuses banning any conservative expression, and watched as so-called hate crimes legislation appeared on the books as the law of our land, a dangerous precedent if ever there was one.
Homosexual special rights groups have foisted their hateful rhetoric on us and cowered many into agreeing to support a same-sex "marriage" agenda that will fundamentally transform this country into something so perverse that none of us will even recognize it in 10 years.
A shrinking number of Americans believe it is their right to keep and bear arms, even though their own precious Constitution guarantees it.
We have allowed our own government officials to spy on us, ostensibly to protect us from the very terrorists they have allowed into the country.
In short, self-engendered political correctness is destroying our Bill of Rights.
So should it come as any surprise that political correctness has so permeated the fabric of our society that a rodeo clown is now public enemy number one? I refer, of course, to the recent incident at the Missouri State Fair, where a rodeo clown dressed in a Barack Obama mask dared to make fun of the president of the United States.
Rodeo clowns are there to distract the bulls and to entertain the crowd, which is exactly what this clown was doing. He appeared in the arena, wearing the Obama mask and a broomstick protruding from the rear of his pants. Meanwhile, an announcer -- apparently another clown with a wireless microphone -- asked the crowd if they would like to see the Obama clown run down by a bull. The audience cheered enthusiastically. Video of the event has since gone viral on the Internet.
Fair officials dubbed the stunt "unconscionable." The clown in the Obama mask has since been banned -- for life -- from performing at the Missouri State Fair. (A-Rod gets a season-and-a-half. This poor guy is banned for life.) And the rest of the rodeo staff is to be subjected to the humiliation of "sensitivity training."
Meanwhile, Mary Ratliff, president of the Missouri chapter of the NAACP, issued this statement: "The activities at the Missouri State Fair, targeting and inciting violence against our president, are serious and warrant a full review by both the Secret Service and the Justice Department. Incidents involving individuals acting out with extreme violent behavior in movie theaters, schools, churches, political appearances, and outdoor events in general speak volumes to the irresponsible behavior of all the parties involved with the incendiary events at the Missouri State Fair."
The stupidity of that statement speaks for itself, but, of course, politicians from both parties started running for cover while harrumphing about intolerance and racism.
The radical left in this country will not be happy until every voice opposed to their agenda has been silenced. It's that simple. And gutless Republicans who go along with this nonsense are playing right into their hands.
Fortunately, there are still voices of reason in the arena. Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas, invited the rodeo clown at the center of this storm to come to Texas and perform. "Liberals want to bronco-bust dissent," Stockman said in a statement released by his congressional office, "but Texans value free speech, even if its speech they don't agree with. From [the late liberal columnist] Molly Ivins to [outspoken conservative congressman] Louie Gohmert and every opinion in between, Texans value free and open political speech. I'm sure any rodeo in Texas would be proud to have the performers."
It sounds like there are still a few courageous elected officials left in Texas. Too bad we can't say the same for Missouri.
Nationally syndicated columnist DOUG PATTON describes himself as a recovering political speechwriter who agrees with himself more often than not.