Sarah Palin on Wednesday cancelled a scheduled interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer following MSNBC host Martin Bashir’s suggestion that she deserved a graphic punishment for comments made about slavery.

Palin has proven a potent ratings-grabber for the second-place morning show, where she once appeared as a guest host.

Bashir apologized Monday for suggesting that someone defecate in Palin’s mouth because of a remark she made comparing the United States’ indebtedness to China with slavery.  MSNBC has not responded to repeated queries about whether Bashir will face disciplinary action.  Bashir anchored his show on Wednesday.

Last Friday, the same day Bashir made his comment, MSNBC suspended weekly talk show host Alec Baldwin for two weeks for using an anti-gay slur in a street confrontation.

Palin’s political action committee has written to MSNBC President Phil Griffin and NBC News President Deborah Turness asking whether Bashir would be disciplined.  Tim Crawford, treasurer of Palin’s PAC, said in the letter that “Americans deserve to know that your network doesn’t condone violent and hateful rhetoric.”

NBC News has sought to separate itself from MSNBC and the cable network’s programming that largely appeals to a liberal fan base, despite the networks sharing ownership and some personnel.

Bashir had criticized Palin and her “long-diseased mind” after playing video of her speech about China.  He told the story of Thomas Thistlewood, a former overseer at a plantation who described in diaries how he dealt with wayward slaves by, in one case, having another slave defecate in the mouth of the miscreant and In another case, he had someone urinate in the face of a slave who was being punished.

Bashir said that when Palin talks about slavery, she’s a candidate for the same punishment.

Crawford noted Baldwin’s punishment in his letter, as well as MSNBC’s firing of Don Imus in 2007 for an offensive comment about members of the Rutgers women’s basketball team. Crawford said he wondered whether discipline had more to do with the target of the remarks rather than the remarks themselves.

Meanwhile on Wednesday, Palin posted on Facebook her brother’s response to a tweet by singer Cher referring to Palin as a “dumb C word.” It’s not clear what set the singer off, although her tweet came on the same day of Bashir’s telecast.

Palin’s brother, Chuck Heath, said he was sorry to hear Cher make such “vile comments” about his sister.

“It’s sad because Sarah has never had a harsh word to say about you,” Heath wrote. “In fact, our grandmother was one of your biggest fans.”

The reason that I bring up this little news spat is because of the utter ridiculousness of the entire situation.  Ever since the explosion of social media and the advent of 24 hour news programs, we are subjected on a daily basis to television programs that support and defend the political rants of one political party, while blasting and criticizing the other political party.  It does not matter whether they are Democrats or Republicans or conservatives or liberals, everything and everybody are fair game.

What I found profound about this article is that Tim Crawford accuses Basher of “violent and hateful rhetoric,” when the same thing could be said about Palin.  Now, I am not supporting what Basher said and I feel that he was out of line, but the question that it raises is when are we going to stop throwing gasoline on the fire and stop the continued fanning of the flames of political discord.

You do not have to agree with the political beliefs of others, but it does not have to get to this level of ignoramus behavior.  When your comments start to lack rational thinking, then you need to step back and stop the political rhetoric because it is not founded in truth, but rather, is based in inflammatory pugilistic comments.

If your belief is that people with opposing views are the enemy, then this country is lost and everything that our fathers fought and died for is gone forever and you have replaced democracy with socialism.  That is a pillar of democracy…the right of free speech, but free speech does nothing to repair the damage done by continued political hatred and discord directed at those whose views differ from yours.

We are now surrounded by people who would rather see this country fractured and destroyed then agree to compromise and unless this separation in belief is mended, then that is exactly what will happen.  Remember…”pride go it before the fall.”

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