Column: John McCain's Campaign Of Hate

This story was written by Paul Cruise III, Daily Illini

If Barack Obama is the candidate of hope, then John McCain must be the candidate of hate. McCain, seeing his defeat on the horizon, has now resorted to extreme lows in his run for the presidency. A recent study from the University of Wisconsin found that during one period a few weeks ago, McCain spent 100 percent of his money on negative advertising.

The senator from Illinois is investing in negative advertising as well, but the spots heruns are not on the same level to whichMcCain has stooped. For example, one of Obama's ads, entitled "Real Change," criticizes the status quo but doesn't mention McCain once. On the contrary, McCain has gone to great lengths and spent a lot money to distort facts and confuse voters in his political advertisements. He ran a spot that said Obama voted to support and fund sex education for preschoolers. The ad implied that three- and four-year-old children would be watching pornography and learning about intercourse. The ad purposely left out the fact that the sex education was age appropriate, meaning young students would learn how to avoid sexual predators. McCain has stopped trying to promote himself in hopes that this election will be won by people not voting for Obama, rather than voting for him.

This kind of tactic is understandable for a man who is almost seven points behind his competitor. It's meant to distract voters from the fact that he has flip-flopped on more issues than Harvey Dent. Some groups, like YouTube-based Brave New Films, have devoted themselves to showing clips of McCain saying something one day and contradicting it in the future.

But even more disturbing than McCain's negative TV spots are the negativity of his political rallies.

It is expected that both candidates' audiences will naturally "boo" their opponents. Often candidates will tell their audiences to calm down and be respectful to their opponents. McCain rallies go far beyond booing. At his political rallies, it is very common to hear people yell things like "terrorist," "traitor" and even "kill him" in reference to Barack Obama. Racial slurs are shouted, some directed at people in the crowd. According to MSNBC, a black sound man had racial epithets and threats thrown at him while taping a McCain rally. What does John McCain do? Instead of explaining to his supporters that this sort of behavior will not be tolerated, he smiles almost as if he were supporting it.

This type of behavior cannot be condoned by a person who wants to lead a diverse nation that comprises of blacks, whites, Latinos, democrats, republicans, gays, etc. You can't incite hate towards certain groups or even allow it. Calling Obama a terrorist is completely unjustified. Barack Obama is no more a terrorist than Sarah Palin is.

Palin's husband, Todd, was part of the Alaskan separatist political group which wanted to secede from the U.S. That political party has publicly stated how they hate America. So if you bash Obama for his "relationship" with William Ayers, then how can you not say the same about Palin? She is married to a separatist.

Now McCain is reverting to Bush tactics by trying to suppress minority and young voters. Their attack on the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now is even more stretched than everything else. ACORN does its best to register voters. Yes, there are a few slips, but over 95 percent of their registered voters are legitimate. Even though some ACORN forms were fraudulent, the fraudulent voters would have to present identification that matched the registration forms in order to vote. Plus, this would have to happen hundreds of thousands of times to afect an election.

It is often said that politics is a dirty game. I agree, but there are some lines that should not be crossed. What we must not forget is that we are all Americans. Whether blue or red, we all want the best for this country. This sort of hate-inspired campaign will only separate the country further and make it more difficult to solve the problems we all face. The race for the presidency demands better.