When we, as the highest beings in the biological hierarchy, decide that it is okay to criticize another person for something that we do ourselves, it is an overt sign that we are hypocrites.
Take Ann Coulter's recent remarks, for instance. Keeping in mind that they were made in jest, I still have trouble with the fact that she has displayed reckless verbal disregard for a Supreme Court Justice of the United States of America. I seem to remember some time ago when many in the GOP were raising a major fuss, about the Randi Rhodes Air America radio piece. That was done in jest, but in very poor taste and in my opinion, totally inappropriate and objectionable. But honestly, I can't find a lot of difference in that deplorable display of sick humor and the remarks made by Ms. Coulter.
Before I go any further, let me say that I agree with Ms. Coulter's observations a great deal of the time; and on many occasions have found her to be quite humorous. And I would add, I believe that Justice Stevens is not a very good Justice. In fact, he may even be the worst. But he is a Justice, nonetheless; and in my opinion deserves a certain degree of respect accorded to anyone that holds that title.
Do I wonder what the hell goes on in his head sometimes and how he arrives at some of his opinions? Yes. Do I want him dead? No. Do I want to joke about him being dead? No. Do feel political and ideological disdain for guys like Howard Dean, Ted Kennedy, and John Kerry? You betcha. But despite how wrong I think they are and how utterly ignorant they can act sometimes, I wouldn't wish any tragedy of any kind, on them or their families, ever. And I don't like to joke about either.
But no matter how immature and distasteful her comments were, the important thing to note in all of this is: it defeats the purpose to call out these people (that so highly deserve to be called out), when we act as they do. How can we set any kind of standard, how can we earn any respect, and how can we ever be taken seriously, if we make stupid remarks like many of them do?
When we become hypocrites, we kill our influence, compromise our standards, and tarnish our reputations of being honest and objective. When we become hypocrites, we become partisans no less guilty than the hacks, we expose. When we become hypocrites, we share a commonality with people like Michael Moore (who publicly slams Halliburton, yet owns stock in it) and Teresa Heinz-Kerry ( for blaming Bush for jobs leaving the country, while the majority of her company's work force is outside the U.S.).