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Dennis Kucinich Is Not A Joke

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Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) is once again running for president. But you wouldn't know it from the mainstream media, which have been spending all their time focusing on Clinton, Obama, and sometimes Edwards.

It seems like the only time we hear about Dennis Kucinich is when the talking heads make fun of him. They ridicule Kucinich's short physical stature and his elfin appearance, and they make creepy comments about Kucinich's gorgeous young wife.

First of all, this is supposed to be an election, not a beauty contest. Kucinich may not have Obama's height or Edwards' good looks. But what he does have are ideas that are often much more in line with what the American people really want. But, for some reason, we can't get past the jokes and get down to the issues.

Unfortunately, the ridicule took on a new dimension when Kucinich admitted, during a recent debate, that he had seen a UFO -- an unidentified flying object. From the reactions I've seen, you'd think he had admitted to seeing little green men inside that UFO.

Yes, that's a little weird, but did that question even really belong in the debate?

Is it any weirder than the fact that former presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan had also seen UFOs?

Is it any weirder than the fact that Ronald and Nancy Reagan consulted an astrologer before making major decisions?

Is it any weirder than the fact that George W. Bush believes that God speaks through him?

No, what's weird is that the issues are being ignored in favor of schoolyard-style ridicule. If the pundits and the Congress could get past the nonsense and focus on the issues, Dennis Kucinich might have a chance to bring about some of the change that the American people have been more and more impatiently waiting for.

Like bringing our troops home from Iraq.

Like holding the Vice President accountable for his manipulation of the intelligence process to deceive Americans in the run-up to the war in Iraq, and for threatening aggression against Iran absent any threat to the U.S.

Like keeping jobs here in the U.S.

Like protecting consumers.

Like promoting the development of clean, safe, renewable energy sources.

Like taking care of our sick.

And like enforcing our country's ideal that all persons are created equal.

But those things are hard work. It's much easier to just sit back, collect money from the special interests, and ridicule Dennis Kucinich.

Because he's short.

Because he's not so telegenic.

Because he's married to a beautiful redhead.

And because he speaks for those of us who have a heart.

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Mary Shaw is a Philadelphia-based writer and activist, with a focus on politics, human rights, and social justice. She is a former Philadelphia Area Coordinator for the Nobel-Prize-winning human rights group Amnesty International, and her views (more...)
 
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