There Are No Unbiased Town Halls

We love our radio gal Francene, but we’re sorry that she thought she could actually participate in an intelligent exchange of ideas about health care without the entire event being hijacked by extremists on both sides.

She’s hosting this Town Hall meeting on Health Care on Wednesday, with Rep. John Yarmuth hoping to have a rational discussion about the pros and cons of the health care legislation being proposed by Pres. Obama.

Francene thought the event might attract some unbiased people who sincerely want to learn the facts about the plan from their Congressman. After all, for most of us regular folks, it’s really difficult to understand what the plan’s really about. All we hear is the shouting and the anger.

She didn’t think that the extremists on both sides would hijack her event in an effort to out-shout the opposition. But that’s what’s going to happen.

Today on her show, she talked about how upset she was that Obama’s Organizing for America group is publicizing a rally right down the street from 4:00 until 5:30, when the Town Hall Meeting is supposed to start at Central High School.

Of course, local Republicans are just as un-interested in a free flow of ideas. That’s why the local party is encouraging its members to show up in t-shirts (that they’re selling, of course) with a Ghostbusters-like logo indicating they want nothing to do with Obama’s health reform plan. The e-mail suggests arriving early to make sure you get in.

Fortunately, Francene gets to ask the questions. And she won’t put up with a bunch of idiots shouting down Yarmuth.

The Meeting, however, is unlikely to dispel any myths or change anyone’s mind about the plan. Health care shouldn’t be a partisan issue, but it is.  The polarization of people has created an atmosphere in which genuine debate simply can’t occur in public.