The end of reason! Sigh…
What is it with Reverends? Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson was recently on the Sean Hannity program bumbling his way through a discussion on the police shooting in South Carolina. Also on the panel was professional raving lunatic Leo Terrell. By the way, I say that fondly. Leo is an artist at the performance of outrage. I was on a panel program with Leo a few years ago. Leo and I knew of each other, but had never met. When the camera was off, Leo and I talked with each other in reasonable tones; he smiled, even cracked jokes. When the camera was back on, he furrowed his brow, raised his voice and began pounding his fist. I thought, “what happened to the guy I was just talking to? The pattern was repeated at every commercial break. Genius! In this instance, however, I don’t believe he was playing to the camera.
Peterson begins talking about angry, young black men and Leo loses it. Eventually, Terrell walks off the show.
I have also been on panels with Peterson and alas, he doesn’t play for the camera; his muddled thinking and in articulate discussion of issues is, well, who he is. Frankly, most times he opens his mouth, I cringe because I know that for every minute he speaks, he will set the cause of Conservatism back ten years. Moreover, because he appears on Hannity frequently, when people want to try to discredit Black Conservatism, they will invariably pull-up a clip of Peterson saying something stupid. No doubt this clip will be making the rounds.
There are a couple questions we must all ask and demand answers to. First, why does Sean Hannity have Peterson on his program so often? There are other Black Conservatives out there, (myself included) who I dare say would be both livelier and less strident. Certainly, the intellectual disaster that is Peterson is not lost on Hannity, nor is it lost on the producers of his program. No! They invite Peterson on the program on purpose. They love Peterson, which brings us to the second question: To what end? What does it serve Conservatives in general and Black Conservatives specifically for Sean Hannity to highlight some of the ridiculous ideas expressed by Jesse Lee Peterson? Black Conservatives had better get an answer to both of those questions – and be satisfied with the answers – before they go all in with Sean Hannity and Fox News.
A cynic might suggest that there is a bit of narrative pushing on the Right as well. But that’s none of my business.