Friday, August 6, 2010

Right-Wing Projection

I'm constantly amazed at how blatant it is.

I'm no psychologist, but my layman's understanding of "projection" is when one person subconsciously ascribes or projects one's own attributes/attitudes/worldview onto another.  The person projecting is unaware that they are universalizing their inner dynamics, so it is all the more damning when the projections are of a negative nature.

Here are a couple of recent examples:

In the wake of the court decision in California this week regarding the constitutionality of Prop. 8, some on the right have brought into question Judge Walker's impartiality on the matter given that it is "an open secret" that he, himself, is gay.  Frankly, I have no idea if the 66-year-old Republican is or not, but I do know that I don't care...and neither should anybody else.  The idea that any gayness he might possess would render him incapable of judging impartially is ridiculous...unless the person making the accusation sees themselves easily swayed in such a situation.  Why is it always a chorus of white men who question the impartiality of women, Jews, African-Americans, Latinas, etc., etc.?  Could it be that they are petrified that karma is a boomerang?

How about Sarah Palin's quip the other day about President Obama being in "over his head"?  Even if she, herself, does not believe she is in over her head -- earlier as a governor and vice-presidential candidate and now as a political commentator for a national cable-news network -- she surely is aware that most people on the planet regard her as such.  I cannot image this doesn't bother her on some level (or is that me projecting?); but, regardless, whether she's conscious of it or not, reflecting the critique onto Obama is simply good politics when it comes to keeping up morale in her base.  I'm not the one in over my head; he's the one in over his head!

Where to begin with the Tea Partiers, eh?  We're not racist...Obama's the one who is racist, right?  He has to be, what with all the revenge he must feel having actually been on the receiving end of racism, unlike us.  We know we'd seek revenge in similar circumstances, so....  It's the classic where da white women at? boogeyman Southern whites like to throw up as a smokescreen for the fact that it was largely white slaveowners raping black slaves, not the other way around.  Or how about their undying love for the Constitution?  We Tea Partiers love that Constitution, and we have to protect it because Obama clearly wants to destroy it!  Nevermind that it is actually the right wing that is currently taking aim at it, whether we're talking about gutting the 14th Amendment, undercutting Congress' ability to raise funds, re-introducing the specter of "states' rights" and even going so far as to threaten succession, blurring/erasing the separation of church and state, and calling into question the 17th Amendment which requires the direct election of senators.

The lack of self-awareness is staggering, and the rest of us are left wondering:  do they really believe this stuff?  No doubt, some do...the rest are merely going along for the ride.

Regardless, an overused rhetorical device (one that Husband hates) springs to mind:  methinks the lady doth protest too much.


[Image via Media Matters.]