Everything that’s wrong with Al Franken….

….And everything that’s wrong with modern liberal political discourse is summed up in these two beautiful paragraphs that Michael Gerson wrote about Al Franken (emphasis mine):

Our popular culture, of course, violates even these expansive boundaries of tastelessness with regularity. We laugh at comedies featuring the C-word, and at cartoons of foul-mouthed third-graders. In the cause of relevance and realism, our common life is already decorated with excrement. Why should political discourse be any different?

For at least one reason: Because vulgarity is often the opposite of civility. This is not, of course, always true. I know a brilliant and large-hearted academic with roots in south Philly who uses the F-word with the frequency of “like” or “and.” But the vulgarity of “The Jerry Springer Show” or misogynous rap music — the cultural equivalents of Franken’s political “satire” — generally expresses contempt and cruelty. Franken is not content to disagree with Karl Rove; he calls him “human filth.” He is not satisfied to criticize Ari Fleischer; Franken terms him a “chimp.” The objects of Franken’s humor — including political opponents and women — are not merely mocked but dehumanized. His trashiness is also nastiness. Rather than lampooning the emptiness and viciousness of our political discourse — a proper role for satire — Franken has powerfully reinforced those failures.

Regardless of where you stand politically, in terms of our country’s ethos of respect for our fellow man, those highlighted sentences are stand-alone reasons not to vote for Al Franken.

By the way, out of curiosity, are any of you Minnesota voters?  That is, am I writing this post with an eye to anyone who can take a stand in Minnesota?