True Confessions: I am addicted to daytime television. My Tivo and my Cable DVR are both on full alert while I’m at work. I like to tell myself it’s in case I have a sleepless night and there’s nothing to watch on my 700 channels. But the truth is, I like it. Now that I’ve said it…
I am particularly intrigued by The View. I started watching in 2005 when I found myself without a day job and stayed with it. At first I used to watch just to hear what ridiculous, pro-conservative babel would come out of Elisabeth Hasselbeck. She would regularly try to convince me that George Bush is a good leader and a brilliant man. And I would sit on the couch screaming at the TV.
Then came the very entertaining Star Jones Chronicles. And these days Rosie accuses Joy of making gay remarks every day for months after Rosie joined the show, but commented that Joy must be more comfortable with it now because she only brings it up once every couple of weeks. From Hot Topics to craft segments, and shopping on a budget to serious issues like Autism and Depression…the show has dragged me in, and now I’m a reluctant regular.
As a regular (and I cannot believe I’m going to say this), I feel badly for Elisabeth. She doesn’t, as I’ve already mentioned, subscribe to Rosie and Joy’s left wing politics, but lately rather than respect each other’s differences the daily sport seems to be Hasselbeck Bashing. Gawker is having a field day tracking the action. Poor Barbara Walters. I’m starting to get the impression that this woman cringes when her phone rings and that she listens to tales from the couch holding her head in her hands.
Listen, Elisabeth Hasselbeck used to strike me as the type who picks her politics based on what her parents think or what her husband thinks. Probably me just being a little bitchy. Anyway, I digress…
The point is that we…meaning Rosie, Joy and I…as left wing liberals believe free speech is what this country was built on. I have Republican friends, and we rarely resort to name calling and body blows. So it pains me to watch this woman be publicly slapped down, insulted and belittled on the air. It seems to me they stop treating her as though she were a child and show a little respect. Whether you agree with her or not, this is a woman who is a role model for her peers. She started out on an island in the middle of the ocean eating bugs on Survivor. She participated in a public audition-fest to get this job. And despite taking it on the chin from her co-hosts she has managed to retain the courage of her convictions.
I am a bleeding heart liberal who doesn’t wear fur, drives a Prius and gives money to charity as birthday gifts. As I may have mentioned, I really don’t like Elisabeth’s politics. But I like her. More importantly, I respect her. The next time I see her on Columbus Avenue I may just let her know.