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Local

Out Here: Blind followers exist in both political parties

My Facebook friends include Republicans and Democrats – some of them diehards.

They have partisan blinders – some know it, others don’t.

The Republicans watch Fox News; the Democrats prefer MSNBC.

After President Barack Obama’s speech on Syria recently, one of my Democratic friends gushed about how convincing he was. 

“He answered everything,” she wrote. “If anyone disagrees, they have no soul.”

This same friend was no fan of any of President George W. Bush’s wars.

You can make a name for yourself in Washington if you appear bipartisan. Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Channahon, who represents Lee County, was not only for Obama’s proposal to attack Syria, he contacted the White House to offer his help to sell it.

Sure, a few other GOP House members favored action against Syria, but none went so far as to actively work for Obama’s cause – not in this political environment. 

Kinzinger’s unique approach resulted in a number of national TV appearances.

To his credit, John Loos, 31, a 2001 Sterling High School grad, captured this polarized situation perfectly.

He wrote an online comedy sketch for Chicago’s Second City that has gone viral, which my fellow reporter, Christi Warren, wrote about in the Sept. 13 newspaper. 

It featured four actors portraying young liberals who are trying to raise money for “The World War III Project,” helping Obama go to war around the globe.

“We promised to support him no matter what,” one of the actors said. “World War III is a very important, very progressive war that Obama tells me is very important, so it must be!”

He promised it wouldn’t be one of those “Republican wars.”

Fox News loved the piece. But conservatives can be blind followers, too. Rush Limbaugh’s listeners like to call themselves dittoheads.

Staunch liberals and conservatives are often seen as quite different. But both are vulnerable to partisan blindness.

David Giuliani is a reporter for Sauk Valley Media. He can be reached at dgiuliani@saukvalley or at 800-798-4085, ext. 525. 

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