>It's been a bad morning. I overslept, then while eating breakfast, read several depressing stories in the New York Times. The one that upset me most was about a "sting" operation enacted by two ultraconservatives who decided that they would bring about the right-wing wet dream of destroying the community organizing group Acorn.
Acorn is not perfect. It has had a series of scandals involving its officers over the last few years. But it also has done legitimate work to empower and engage disenfranchised, low income Americans in politics and economic growth. In New York City, Acorn has helped families frozen out of the housing market obtain places to live through shrewd credit counseling, homeownership classes, and technical assistance. People who participated in Acorn's programs here are not losing their homes to foreclosure.
Conservatives hate nothing more than when low income people ask for their fair (or I should say, fare) share of the heaping American apple pie. Actually, forget the "fair share" - they loathe when people who have been locked out of the mainstream systems that benefit white, middle- and upper-classes as for even a crumb or two of what they deserve. These groups and people, many of which have engaged in questionable activities themselves (remember Rush Limbaugh's illegal prescription addition and how he blamed his maid?), thus must bring down organizations like Acorn that are successful.
Today's New York Times article explains that two squirelly right-wingers dressed up as a prostitute and pimp, then went to Acorn offices and asked for help acquiring a home that they could use a brothel for under-age El Salvadorean girls. Two Acorn workers didn't blink an eye, explaining not only how to obtain the property, but also how to hide their illegal activity from the government.
There is nothing excusable or OK about what these Acorn employees did, and they have been fired. As a result of disgusting actions, Acorn is losing federal housing funds. But here's the problem with these incidents: they were isolated. And we don't find that out until deep in the article. See, the Times notes that the filmmakers "spent months visiting numerous Acorn offices, including those in San Diego, Los Angeles, Miami and Philadelphia, before getting the responses they were looking for."
Why is no one demanding the rest of the tape? The evidence where almost everyone they came into contact to at Acorn did the right thing? It's like shutting down an entire hospital because of one awful doctor and a shitty nurse. Investigative journalism is NOT when you go out and do undercover investigations, find one thing that confirms wrongdoing, and then portray it as rampant corruption. YouTube may have made this video popular, but it certainly did not help tell the truth.
Between these squirrelly, unethical "truth seekers" and the fucking lunatics who protested in DC on Sept. 12, I really give up. Americans are not, as far as I can tell, interested in truth or justice. The sad part is this is what the real American way might be.