Sometimes I wonder how news spreads to people who do not use Twitter. Do you feel like you live in The Stone Age, oh ye tweet-less, waiting to hear news (anything from celebrity breakups to actual breaking political news) from a source slower than the ol’ birds? I found out about Sandy Hook on twitter, basically as soon as news broke. I found out about Whitney Houston’s death on Twitter, I found out about what I thought was the death of Bon Jovi via Twitter. So, you see, Twitter, like all news sources, certainly does not know all. Anyone has a voice (which I love), but anyone has a voice (which I kinda hate). It can be tricky, and trending topics are not to be entirely trusted.
But when a legitimate news source – in this case, I believe it was The New York Times – tweets about something, I do not need to fact check it to believe its authenticity. While procrastinating on Twitter (as I usually am), tweets started rolling in about Hillary Clinton‘s hospitalization. I had heard of her concussion the month prior, and “they” (the Tweeters) were now saying doctors found a blood clot near her brain. Upon researching, it seemed that Clinton would be just fine, but was kept in the hospital regardless.
Anyone has a voice on Twitter, even those that already speak their loud voices on television, the radio, or in print. Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you like drama as I do), Twitter also allows for controversy on a quicker, more widespread level. After Clinton’s concussion, plenty of well-known political commentators utilized their social media accounts to accuse her of “faking it.”
Ann Coulter, infamous conservative social and political commentator, columnist and lawyer, exercises her offbeat opinions on twitter quite often. She took little to no time commenting on Clinton’s concussion, tweeting, “Hillary can’t testify on Benghazi because she fainted and received a concussion. Or as I call it, “A Christmas Tale.’”
Stephen Kruiser, a comedian and conservative political activist, tweeted something similar, claiming that “Hillary’s fake concussion will probably become a fake coma after reading the #Benghazi report.”
Clinton was scheduled to testify last month regarding the assault in Benghazi, Libya that left four Americans dead. She is now re-scheduled to testify on January 22nd.
Conservative talk show hosts, political commentators, message boards, blogs, and television shows have all spoken quite strikingly about Clinton’s health issues in the past month: not only are they often claiming that she faked a concussion and a blood clot, but they are claiming that she did so to avoid the “intimidating” line of men that will eventually question her during the Benghazi trial.
Let us get at least one thing straight here. Clinton has been in a position of political power for at least thirty years, dating back to being “first lady” of Arkansas. Preceding even that, Clinton was the first female chair of the Legal Services Corporation (in 1978), and she was appointed the first female partner at Rose Law Firm, one of the oldest law firms in the United States. We all know that after all of this, Clinton went on to her active role as First Lady of the United States of America, as well as the first First Lady to run for public office, the first female senator to represent New York, and eventually, the Secretary of State.
She is clearly in no way intimidated by a situation when there are men involved.
Unsurprisingly, Fox News has been behind most of the allegations of Clinton’s “faking it.” Though they reported, shamelessly and anti-factually (citing the National Enquirer at one point) about Clinton feigning her concussion, the media heads backed off a bit when she checked into the hospital for her blood clot. Because the Secretary of State has to check into a hospital before her word is taken as truth? Is this a Democrat versus Republican thing, or is this a woman thing? Or is it both? Why are we still questioning the actions and intentions of a woman who has gained our trust thoroughly throughout her years of public service? Why does a sixty-five year old woman suffering the occasional health problem have to endure accusations that are not only entirely unbelievable, but offensive to not just an authority figure, but a human being in general?
What do you guys think? Has the conservative media gone too far?
Featured image via Shutterstock.