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article imageOp-Ed: Romney's GOP acceptance speech — desperate and disingenuous

By Sadiq Green     Aug 31, 2012 in Politics
Thursday night Mitt Romney accepted the Republican Party’s nomination for President at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. It was perhaps his most telling moment during his campaign for president.
In presenting his case to the gathered Republican delegates and the American electorate, Romney’s acceptance speech avoided the major falsehoods of his running mate Paul Ryan’s from the previous night. But there were still moments when his facts went awry or were missing important context. While he roused the audience with his typically empty boasts and bloated projections for the future of America, the former governor didn’t share how he plans to turn the country around nor did he offer any countering measure to President Barack Obama’s plans.
His speech was also a shameful exercise in revisionist history, topped by a blatant appeal to the virtues of pre-Civil War America and states' rights, containing carefully coded insults that excited delegates.
Maintaining a genial tone, Romney effectively humanized himself, opening up about faith and family, but soon pivoted to subtle digs towards President Obama. Mitt Romney deliberately fed the paranoia of the party’s ‘Birthers’ by suggesting that “when the world needs someone to do the really big stuff, you need an American.” It was a blatantly xenophobic nod to the worst elements of the political right; and the second time in a week Romney has alluded to the disproved notion that President Obama was not born in the United States. Romney knows better and his willful alignment with the likes of "Birther in Chief" Donald Trump exposes the former governor’s true character. So too did Mr. Romney’s subtle and frequent references to faith, again questioning the President’s faith while the Republican nominee hid behind his Mormon faith and uses the Bible as a strategic defense shield. It was a classic bait and switch – speak in the language of faith and patriotism and then spoon feed your audience out of the bowl of evil intent.
What was apparent in Romney’s speech last night is that his campaign took great pains to lay claim to being legitimate Americans. It is beyond disingenuous in 2012 to claim “we are a nation of immigrants” and discount the trials and suffering of American Indians, enslaved Africans and modern African-Americans and Hispanic immigrants. To have Romney equate his family experiences with those of America’s oppressed is beyond insulting and is deliberately divisive. Romney stood before the nation attempting to present himself worthy of the presidency, but only showed the desperation of his candidacy by purposely ignoring history.
Romney’s true moral character, or more precisely his lack of it, was on full display when he chided the President on job creation and had the audacity to suggest that the nation was less secure despite the killing of Osama bin Laden. The GOP has no room to criticise the present administration’s foreign policy after the Bush administration's orchestrated hunt for nonexistent weapons of mass destruction that led our nation into two wars, caused the deaths of thousands of soldiers and seriously injured thousands, while digging a fiscal hole so deep we are likely generations removed from an earnest recovery.
To top it off, Romney had the gall to revive Cold War rhetoric and engage in some old-fashioned saber rattling, dismissing any effort to reach a diplomatic resolution with Iran while pulling a bush league move by talking tough to Russia.
Perhaps the most telling and offensive aspect of Romney’s speech was his blatant effort to suggest his silver spoon upbringing is the American ideal, and that his pathway to riches, built upon the exchange of paper and indifference to laborers, is somehow the best this nation can offer.
His penchant for outright lies in regard to the President’s policy record, and his deplorable appeal to the worst elements of the right exposes the desperation of a man whose only route to the White House is a road built upon lies, distortion and deception.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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