March Madness for Political Junkies

Posted: Mar 31, 2008 5:01 PM
March Madness for Political Junkies

San Diego beating University of Connecticut? West Virginia defeating Duke? Davidson in the Elite Eight? Who would have predicted these upsets? I guess this is why they call it March Madness.

If you are like me because you only have a few teams left in your basketball bracket, you are in luck because the Young America’s Foundation (YAF) has come up with a new kind of March Madness, a March Madness game for political junkies called “March Liberal Madness.”

Here is how you play. YAF compiled a list of 16 finalist people who, “sit on the far left of the political spectrum for their backward stances on countless important issues. They are all concretely against the proven excellence of conservatism as taught and practiced by Ronald Reagan, and seek to radically change America as we know and love it.” YAF encourages student groups on college campuses, although anyone can play, to set up brackets with these 16 people facing off against each other for the ultimate title of the “craziest leftist in America.” Who are the contestants? There are so many to choose from. The YAF list includes, Noam Chomsky, Howard Dean, Al Franken, Jeneane Garofalo, Al Gore, Ted Kennedy, Bill Maher, Michael Moore, Rosie O’Donnell, Nancy Pelosi, Sean Penn, Susan Sarandon, Al Sharpton, Cindy Sheehan, George Soros and Barbara Streisand.

Who said conservatives lack a sense a humor?

I learned of this game while giving a speech on Women’s History Month to a conservative group at James Madison University (JMU) last week. Before my speech, a young woman displayed a PowerPoint presentation of a bracket. I assumed it was for basketball, but then noticed pictures of Howard Dean screaming, Michael Moore laughing and Susan Sarandon wearing a t-shirt with the slogan, “What would Jesus bomb?” It turned out they were discussing and then voting in their “March Liberal Madness” tournament.

The game is tougher than it looks because the match-ups are so even. For example, think about Howard Dean taking on Cindy Sheehan. Not an easy decision. Howard Dean, the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, has said, “The idea that the United States is going to win the war in Iraq is just plain wrong,” “I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for” and “[Republicans] are a pretty monolithic party. Pretty much, they all behave the same, and they all look the same.... It's pretty much a white Christian party.”

Cindy Sheehan, the face of the anti-war movement in America, has a strong liberal record of her own. After her son died in the Iraq War, she said, “America is not worth dying for” and President Bush “is ten times the terrorist that Osama ever was.” The quotes speak for themselves.

Who would you vote for as the most liberal? How about the match-up between George Soros v. Sean Penn? Al Franken v. Susan Sarandon? Rosie O’Donnell v. Michael Moore?

While I was visiting JMU, the students debated the finalists, enjoying themselves as they recalled the most liberal things these finalists had said or done.

Too often on college campuses it is the liberal activists who are coming up with creative ways to fight for their causes, whether it’s through participating in “Living Wage” sit-ins, putting on The Vagina Monologues or holding “Sex-Fests.” The liberal activists successfully appeal to young students and get them involved in politics early by making it fun.

Conservative activists should learn from the liberal activists on campuses by coming up with creative ways to make points and in turn, attract others. “March Liberal Madness” is a phenomenal example of this because it reminds people of what the left stands for in a humorous way.

Here’s to hoping my “March Liberal Madness” bracket does better than my March Madness bracket.