Politicians, “Lies,” and the Urgency of Decoding

This afternoon CNN Reporter Rick Santorum (yes, you read that correctly) said that Barack Obama constantly singles out and criticizes people of Christian faith.

He also said:

…I take big issue because President Obama was probably one of the most vindictive presidents that we’ve ever dealt…One of the things that made it him hard for him — I’ll be honest — hard for him to get things done was going after Paul Ryan while Paul Ryan is sitting right in front of him and trying to embarrass him…

Of course, such statements are “lies.”

President Obama has never criticized Christians or people of other religions or people who do not follow any religion or deity. Evidence easily proves that.

Evidence also proves that Paul Ryan and his conservative colleagues directly and indirectly said their number one goal was to oppose everything President Obama said and planned.

Rick Santorum “lies” in the same way Donald Trump “lies.” (One would think they would have a problem telling so many lies given that they say they are Christians and they are breaking an important Commandment of their stated faith.) It’s like they live in another, weird, parallel universe.

But, and this is a huge “but,” we must understand that in this historical moment we must very carefully decode everything conservative politicians say. When they tell yet another “lie,” reminding them (and their followers) of hard-core–objective–evidence does not do any good because they actually mean something else.

What do they really mean? What are they actually saying? 

What fear are they actually further promoting? 

For example:

When people accuse President Obama of being a Muslim again and again that is code for something like “we cannot tolerate a Black President.”

When people oppose abortion that is code for “we are afraid because White people are a numerical minority in the United States.” 

When Rick Santorum says that Obama hates Christians that is code for “Obama accepts that most of the world is not White/Patriarchal/Christian” and “Obama is a heathen because he is Black and truly cares about fellow humans.”

Dr. Andrew Joseph Pegoda