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Where the Liberalism Hits the Road 
by Selwyn Duke
18 February 2004

Judge Harry Rapkin’s situation is unique; it’s usually other people who have to live with liberals’ ideals because the trail of tears rarely leads directly to any liberal’s doorstep.

It was an interesting scene when Judge Harry Rapkin was cornered by a reporter and camera crew outside his beautiful home in his upscale neighborhood.  Rapkin was the last judge to handle the case of that miscreant Joseph P. Smith, the man who murdered 11-year-old Carlie Brucia on Super Bowl Sunday.  As I watched the judge struggle for words and petulantly lash out at Bill O’Reilly with all the eloquence of a grade-schooler, something my brother once said occurred to me: “It’s easy to be idealistic when you don’t have to live with your ideals.”
O’Reilly was a bit taken aback by the judge's comportment, as he expected to witness some contrition.  After all, despite Smith’s laundry-list-like rap sheet, Rapkin did not jail him for his probation violation.  Rapkin has countered that criticism by saying that Smith never appeared in his court and that he did not have Smith’s history at his disposal.  But that’s why you cross all your T’s and dot all your I’s, Judge, and call such offenders before you so as to ensure you’re not judging rashly.
I just may know what accounts for the judge’s failure to exhibit remorse, however.  I think the tragic consequences of his dereliction of duty are so difficult to own up to that he can’t come to terms with his complicity in the matter.  It’s hard to admit that your actions contributed to the death of an innocent.
You see, Judge Rapkin finds himself in a rather unique situation.  Most of the time liberals can espouse their beliefs and implement their policies while remaining blissfully ignorant of their true effects.  Steeped in their ideology and ensconced in the cocoon of their comfortable little worlds, they can usually pontificate about the plight of their fellow man and pat themselves on the back for being fonts of compassion and insight, then saunter off and have a café latte at Starbucks without ever having to answer for the damage they wreak.
Liberals may, for instance, shift the blame for crime from the criminal and to society and admonish about the perils of good old-fashioned punishment.  They then will advocate rehabilitation that amounts to nothing more than psycho-babble and a slap on the wrist and then retreat to their well-policed, patrician neighborhoods.  But they’ll never have to negotiate the streets of the dark underbelly of the naked city where gunshots ring out in the night, nor will there be a collective finger angrily pointed at them for having created a deterrent-compromised society.  It’s easy.
Or they may muddy the waters when discussing the failing educational system by trotting out the myths that class size is too great, budgets are too low, schools are too old and technology too primitive.  They will denude the schools of the necessary ingredients for education, such as discipline and obedience, by advocating permissiveness, radical-egalitarianism and gratuitous rights for students.  They will de-emphasize traditional elements of curricula and replace them with a new educational paradigm, replete with left-wing ideology.  Then when the public schools are reduced to war-zones or baby-sitting services where the three r’s being taught are racism, revisionism and relativism, they will send their children to the best private schools.  But it’s easy, because they’ll never have to live in the shoes of the young boy who is never instilled with discipline, who is socially-promoted and who is damned to live a life in which the American dream is beyond his grasp.
Or liberals may support candidates who are totally bereft of a respect for life, even those who support partial-birth abortion.  They’ll most likely never have to see babies who have been thrown in trash bins, though, or the almost-born children who have their brains ripped from their skulls in abortion mills.  It’s easy.
But Judge Rapkin’s situation is unique – very, very unique.  It’s usually other people who have to live with liberals’ ideals because the trail of tears rarely leads directly to any liberal’s doorstep, which is often situated at the foot of an ivory tower.  With respect to crime, education that amounts to malpractice and abortion, it’s relatively difficult to connect the dots.  But Rapkin has been wrenched from his apathy-induced slumber, as the haunting images of the fruits of his flawed ideals have been transmitted into every home – including his own.  So, yes, it’s easy to be idealistic when you don’t have to live with your ideals.  Just ask Judge Harry Rapkin – he can tell you.  And during one of his more honest moments he just may whisper it in your ear.  For he will now have to live with his ideals . . . for the rest of his life.

Selwyn Duke's homepage is The Truth Page

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