Olbermann Unbound | The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Olbermann Unbound
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As if to support Dylan Gwinn’s case against the current political sports press, the leftie wild man at ESPN (Every Sport Political Now), Keith Olbermann went on an extended and unhinged rant against the new Indiana law that gives Hoosiers a chance of living by their religious beliefs rather than by the dictates of the homosexual political movement and the leftist agenda generally.

Those familiar with the execrable Keith will not be surprised to hear that he wildly exaggerates the purpose and likely effects of this mild and reasonable measure, which he refers to as a “hate law.” He drags in Jim Crow, the irrelevant argument over whether gays choose to be gay (they don’t), Jackie Robinson, allowing people to love whom they want to (I’ve encountered no one against this), and various other leftist bug-bears and non-sequiturs. He doesn’t mention trans-fats, but that’s about all he leaves out of his sermon against what he calls a “revival of hate” in Indiana. This fire and brimstone 11 minutes would make Jeremiah Wright proud. Sinners in the hands of an angry sportscaster.

All this heavy breathing about Religious Freedom Restoration Acts, which numerous states have, is either cynical or stupid. The Indiana law, and others across the nation, have only a trifling effect on gay Americans (who, by the way, do not make up anything close to 10 percent of the population, a nonsensical number that Olbermann repeats in his rant). No one is trying to keep gays out of restaurants or hotels or stores or ball games as those hamming it up about RFRAs are claiming. And most of the folks making the most noise know it.

Gays in America have no trouble finding folks to bake them wedding cakes or to provide them venues for their various ceremonies. A small number of Americans, for sincere religious reasons, wish to be left out of the celebration. These folks can be easily accommodated with no discomfort to gay Americans. But the Left doesn’t want an accommodation. It wants conflict and hyperbole, which are better for fund-raising and for exciting the base. This is demagoguery of the vilest sort.  

Olbermann, in full dudgeon, calls on the NFL and the NBA to pull their franchises out of Indiana (good luck with that) and calls on the NCAA to pull its games and its offices out of Indianapolis and out of Indiana. The state must be cast into outer darkness for its backwardness, he asserts, with the assurance of an Old Testament prophet. Others may just be milking this issue for its political and fund-raising value. But Olbermann appears to be truly enchanted, a True Believer. He’s clearly mad as hell and doesn’t want to take it anymore. You have to wonder if Olbermann studied broadcast journalism on a Howard Beale scholarship.

Rather than Olbermann’s all-sports excommunication of Indiana (no word yet from him on the couple of dozen others states and localities that have similar laws), I have another suggestion. America’s airwaves would enjoy a net gain in coherence and civility if ESPN got shed of Olbermann. They should consider doing this before the first gay baker refuses to bake a wedding cake for a Christian couple because he’s offended by their beliefs. This might cause Olbermann a second or two’s confusion. Though I’m sure he would quickly recover and find the Christians at fault. Again. He’s reliable that way.

Larry Thornberry
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Larry Thornberry is a writer in Tampa.
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