The Corner

Oh, Good Grief, Yourself Yourself

I’m reluctant to disparage John Podhoretz as some effete metrosexual Ethel Merman impersonator, being one myself. But I can’t see how the hunting thing is going to hurt Cheney or the GOP. For one thing, even when they’ve got the bones of a case, you can always rely on the Democrats and the media to over-react and, in so doing, come across as a lot of prigs. Already, NBC’s David Gregory, the George Clooney of the press corps, has been huffin’ an’ a-puffin’ all over the TV demanding answers – multiple answers – about why he had to wait 18 hours to hear about the accident. Who cares? A “sinister cover-up” has to boil down to more than not giving David Gregory a press release. And, given that the media’s spent the last two weeks telling the public why they don’t need to see these Danish cartoons, it’s hard to take them seriously as sudden converts to the public’s right to know every detail, if only when it comes to minor hunting accidents.

From an anecdotal survey of my part of the North Country, most guys see the Cheney business as an excuse to tell their own hunting stories, mostly of the been-there-done-(or-nearly-done)-that variety. I’m not saying I’m entirely on board with the line that real men shoot each other all the time without whining like a bunch of ninnies about what’s no more than a healthy American male bonding experience. But on balance this is one of those no-scandal scandals where Democrat/media hysteria only underlines their estrangement from the average red-state male. If John disagrees, I’d be happy to argue it out with him on a hunting trip deep in the woods – or, if he doesn’t trust me that far off the grid, we can shoot each other’s Broadway cast albums off the back of the pick-up one weekend.

Mark Steyn is an international bestselling author, a Top 41 recording artist, and a leading Canadian human-rights activist.

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