Editor's Note: This story was written after the Paducah GOP Senate Debate in Paducah in Feb. 2010.
2/15/10 - Fragile is the fabric of frustration and discontent, when in the discourse of political ideas, passion is loosed upon the landscape. In each attempt to gather strength as a movement or gain dominance in position over an opponent or seize power in a direct confrontation, there is always a singular timeframe of a moment when power turns its linear track and diffuses or deviates into a new direction.
Controlling the fate and future of millions of people through the hands of the few, is a time honored science found through out man’s history. The trick is to merge agenda with the energy and geography of living into what passes for “normal life” for the masses.
All “isms” be it capitalism, communism, fascism, corporatism, globalism, socialism, Islamicism, share root control devices over its subjects. These are (1) the belief in core idea (2) passion to fight for that idea (3) sense of place and history with core idea and (4) sense of righteousness in a common future based upon that idea.
America is now standing at a crossroads for who shall lead the nation into the 21st Century. We, as a collective nation and individuals, have lost the first decade of this new century to wars and self destruction of purpose.
We are morally drifting. Our public energies are seeking a new path of security and trust for healing our wounded economic lives. We question and give doubt to our traditional leaders. The ism of capitalism is morphing into something not seen since the robber baron days of 1910. Corporations now have the equal rights of humans. Doubt shadows our individual days of working for a better life for our children.
Thus, when a crowd of West Kentuckians gather in Paducah, Kentucky under the banners of the Republican Party and McCracken County Grassroots Group to listen to Republican candidates for the United States Senate seat for Kentucky, it marks a crack in the normal physics of traditional politics.
This singular event demonstrated the conflict of tradition over reform. Everything from seating to sign in to questions, and media security was in play.
The seating was roped off to make sure people sat only in designated zones for crowd control and media shots. For some reason, only the center and right rows of seats were allowed to fill up with people. The left side was empty except for the lone camera facing the stage.
On the right side of the room, a block of 8 seats by 12 rows was roped off for media use only. This held the radio operations of Western Star Radio, WWW , Fox News and NBC Channel 6 TV. All media had been screened for special Event Media Security Badges. This included bloggers as well as traditional media out lets. www.angrywhiteguy.com There were eight TV camera positions and staff working the event. Five of these camera crews were from private sector, candidate, Republican or Grassroots operations and control.
All questions from the audience were chosen by screeners from a list of mailed in or e-mailed questions for content and issue. The lucky “winners” were allowed to personally ask their question to the three candidates. These people were seated in four rows behind a podium on the right side of the stage.
The Grand Old Party of McCracken County and the McCracken County Grassroots Group submitted their own questions to the three candidates. These were the softball questions. Such burning issues such as “Are you a conservative?’ and “Are you against the corporate bail out on Wall Street?” set the tone for this part of the media show.
Legacy Control vs. Directed Protest
At one telling moment within the debate, Trey Grayson defended Senator Mitch McConnell for supporting the Bank Bail Out. He said that he didn’t agree with the Senator, “But that it was all right with him because McConnell was right on so many other things…”
A shudder went through the crowd. It was not alright with them. Grayson lost points on this statement. The wealth and legacy of the Grand Old Party sitting along side the blue jean crowd have a long way to go in order to embrace each other. The Grassroots members of the audience were there not to be a part of the Republican Party as much as they wanted to take measure of three men who wanted to lead them into political battle.
The Republican Party handlers held control over the physical space and a very short lease on the media in attendance. However, for the most part, the Grassrooters and Tea Party members could care less about the legacy of the Grand Old Party or the Democratic Party. They were in attendance to share a common moment of seeking answers. And in that moment when a “crack in normal” took place they felt a common bond in which a new movement may be forming on the political frontier of far Western Kentucky.