Paul R. Lehman, Chicken Little and Obama Naysayers

July 3, 2010 at 8:22 pm | Posted in American Bigotry | 3 Comments
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Ever since the Obama election some Americans, namely republicans, tea partiers, conservatives and other Obama naysayers and been acting like the world is coming to an end. He has been characterized as a socialist, communist, fascist, antichrist, devil, alien, joker, Muslim, Hitler, tyrant, and a host of other equally complimentary terms. In addition, he is said to lack intelligence, courage, drive, common sense, integrity, Christian values, and male dominance qualities. He has been described as having a tragically flawed character. As one might assume, all these features are negative because to them his represents the voice of doom. The problem with this picture is that the representations are really reversed. The only loud and negative voices proclaiming doom and destruction of Americas are the naysayers. They are best characterized as belonging to the Chicken Little club.

            If we recall they story, Chicken Little is hit on the head by a falling acorn which leads her to believe that the sky is falling. The Obama naysayers believe that his election as President signaled the sky falling or a loss of their privileges and control. What happens next is that fear and anxiety takes control of the club and they must spread the word that disaster and doom is imminent in America because Obama is now President. Every conceivable argument is employed to convince the people that the sky is calling or America has been taken from them by Obama. Since the story of Chicken Little has numerous endings, we will visit several to show how they fit the club.

            One of the endings to the story suggests that when disaster strikes, one must face it head-on calling up as much courage as possible to meet the challenge. Unfortunately, the only courage the naysayers have conjured up is reflected in their fear and anxiety or their Obama name calling and rejections. Nothing created and/or promoted by Obama gives cause for believing the doom and destruction of America is imminent. After all, America has three arms of government to make certain that no one branch takes total control of society. What the action being employed by the Chicken Little club shows is them simply being chickens.

            Another ending to the story involves both Chicken Little and her hearers. As she makes her way to tell the king that the sky is falling, she informs all the people she encounters. Rather than question the validity of her information, they simply go along with her. Well, last weekend in Oklahoma City the epitome of Chicken Little story was being told by none other than Glen Beck and Carl Rove (for a price). The title of their tale was not “The Sky is Falling,” but “Taking back our Country.”The message is that ‘Real Americans’ must stop and think about what has happened to their country and once they realize that it is being held and changed by Obama, they must fight to take it back. Unfortunately, many of the story listeners and club members do not think, but simply accept what is being said as valid and react on those bases. They need to realize that “Real Americans” do not believe everything they are told, they check the facts first.

            Another ending to the story involves the use of an outside motivator who selects the bearer of the ill tidings in an effort to convince the hearers. What happens is the outside motivator wants a certain message presented to some people who will accepted it without question. So the outsider selects the dumbest person available and convinces him or her that the sky is falling. That person will proceed to go out and convince others that the message is true. How does this happen? Most intelligent people will hear the dumb person’s message and assume it to be factual because they do not believe the dumb person is not capable of manufacturing that message on his or her own. Unfortunately, everyone in the story is duped because they do not verify the information being presented.

            The Chicken Little club and their activities fit easily into all three of these scenarios because they are gullible and trusting. The American public is at no loss to hear and see the talking heads on radio and television warning them of the imminent disaster about to befall America because Obama is the President. The reason for all this activity is fear that the world is coming to an end, as in the Chicken Little story. But what is the cause of the fear? Had Chicken Little stopped to examine the acorn that hit her on the head, she would have realized that only one acorn fell. Had the characters Chicken Little met on her way to the king asked her how she knew that the sky was falling, they would have discovered that she was over-reacting. Had the people who were convinced that Chicken Little’s message was factual considered the source of the message, they would have reconsidered their response.

            What is the fear of the Chicken Little club? Society, as they knew it is changing. One of the effects of that change is a loss of privilege and control over non-European American citizens based on color. Breaking old habits is difficult at best when few options are available for retaining the status quo. When change forces a departure from the old, comfortable, and convenient habits, the first reaction is defensive. Change cannot occur in an undisturbed environment, so some adjustments must be expected. Common sense and reason will dictate to most Americans the actions that need to be taken if indeed the sky starts to fall or that we must take our country back from Obama and his democrats before it is utterly destroyed. The power of fear is that it controls the fearer, not the one creating the fear. Chicken Little was just a dumb bird.

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3 Comments »

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  1. Dr. Lehman,
    This was a clever column, one of the most interesting in this series. Chicken Little gets his wings, in large part, from Fox “news.”
    I heard on talk radio that President Obama had taken all the Bibles out of hotel rooms and replaced them with porn. I went to a hotel room and couldn’t, hard as I tried, find the porn. What’s more, I looked all up and down the hallways and didn’t see hair or hide of snyone who even looked like our president. Maybe he was resting at his Texas ranch. Oops! Wrong president!

  2. I agree, very clever spin on a very ugly situation. You can’t blame Beck or Rove for capitalizing and profiting from the fear. Ultimately reality will rule the day. A stonger economy, a resolution in Afghanistan, a genuine effort toward alternative energy, a realistic solution to immigration. Results will always hush the crowd like when the visiting team scores a touchdown. Results will unmask the Becks and Roves and all will see them as the carpetbaggers they are.

  3. Well I don’t typically comment on weblogs but I happened upon yours whilst I was doing some job research in Yahoo today and so i thought I would drop a quick note. I have to confess that I’ve gotten somewhat distracted going through and reading some of your posts… I ought to probably be working. You have some very nice observations here, so I’ll add you to my Google Reader for the future. Take care!


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