Anatomy of a Smear Job

Did you know that Barack Obama is a criminal?!

Neither did I—until I saw the front page of MSN this morning (after being directed there by Spudsy), where I was greeted by this image:

Naturally, I clicked through to the article to find out more about Obama's despicable lawbreaking, where I was then greeted by this image:

ZOMG! Obama's not just a lawbreaking criminal, but a mincing, flag-desecrating minstrel!

After this revelation, I could hardly bring myself to read about the heinous wave of crime perpetrated by a man who purports to be an upstanding American citizen, but I bravely plowed on:

Some conservative bloggers are furious about a photo showing Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama without his hand on his heart during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner." Obama has countered that the photo was taken during the national anthem, not the Pledge of Allegiance—so he didn't have to. Is that true?

No. According to U.S. law, a civilian like Obama is supposed to stand up when the anthem is played, take off his hat, face the flag, and put his right hand over his heart.
Then there was a bunch of stuff about from whence these laws came—stuff that alluded to the wildly disproportionate levels of symbolic patriotism expressed during a time of war, leading to laws being passed that are unenforceable because they are technically unconstitutional.

But I just glanced right past that stuff and tried even harder to ignore the conclusion, which itself seemed to contradict the idea that Obama's patriotism is for shit:

So, does this mean that it's against the law to sit down for "The Star-Spangled Banner" at a baseball game? Technically, but you won't get in trouble. Though the procedure for listening to the national anthem is spelled out in the U.S. Code, you can't be punished for breaking the rules. That would likely be considered a violation of the First Amendment.
Shake it off. Shake. It. Off. Obama is unpatriotic, dammit! Remember, he doesn't even wear a label pin! Gawd, he's disgusting!

Only some kind of horrible scoundrel would fail to place his hand over his heart during the anthem!

I bet that guy was totally arrested. We should have Obama arrested, too—before he ruins the entire country!

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