Western style programming intrudes on Russian dignity

Debating in the style of American name-calling brings out the very worst in Russian Presidential Elections debate TV program

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of this site. This site does not give financial, investment or medical advice.

If there is any factor that is going to bring down the Russian Federation, it is the continued insistence on imitation of the West. Whether it be liberal or conservative aligned programming in the United States or Great Britain, the common denominator of anything related to political opinions and policy debate has degraded to little more than shouting and name-calling in the West.

It is a tragedy that there are those in Russia who think that imitating this programming style is beneficial to anyone in Russia.

Now to the Western reader, it should be understood – there is NO political correctness in Russia. It would seem that after the Communist days, the right of any man or woman to speak their piece is jealously guarded, and this is a good thing. It should be this way.

But before Communism, Russia (and the rest of the world) were far more deeply aligned with Christian values, or at least a common level of respect for one another that was accorded by Judaism and Islamic believers as well. Whether Christian or not, the Golden Rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” truly guided most of society. In particular, a sense of dignity and decorum came with the houses of royalty and statesmanship.

Happily in a few places in the world, this dignity is mostly upheld. Russia is one of them – just watch President Vladimir Putin’s behavior in matters of state and debate.

But the political talk show in America has become anything but a debate. It is a spectacle, a shouting match, where no one really wins, but the viewer often comes away from this experience angry and feeling self-justified with their own viewpoints, especially if their person shouted the loudest during the telecast.

In Russia the leftover social brokenness makes some people truly awful to listen to, and the influx of liberal fantasy makes others ineffectual and weak, and therefore unable to lead. But it also gives rise to destruction of people, rather than their transformation.

On a presidential debate program that aired on Wednesday, 14 March, candidates Ksenia Sobchak and Vladimir Zhirinovsky each and together met in a race to the bottom. Zhirinovsky is billed as a “flamboyant” leader of the Liberal Democratic Party in Russia, and he is well known for what appears to be a “court jester” style of buffoonery in his behavior. Think “Rodney Dangerfield does politics,” and one might get a rough idea of the man’s style. Ksenia Sobchak is a socialite and she is highly influenced by liberalism in a style that might make Kim Kardashian or Paris Hilton proud. While she is a married woman, she repeatedly markets herself on what we might call the “idiot factor” and the programs and interviews she hosts and conducts easily reflect how utterly out of touch with reality she truly is.

Put these two together, though, and you get this:

As the video shows, Sobchak, who positions herself as the opposition candidate “against all,” tried to deliver her 30-second address to the voters, but she couldn’t get a word in edgewise because her opponents were heckling her. Zhirinovsky was the most rude about it.

“I demand my time to be returned to me,” she exclaimed at host Vladimir Solovyov. But Zhirinovsky used the remark as an opening for another attack, shouting: “Return her to the kindergarten and put her on a potty. Maybe the girl will feel better.”

Solovyov refused to stop the yelling as he cited the debate rules. “Had it been my program, I would cut anyone off in order to let everyone have their say,” he assured Sobchak, but said that the Central Elections Commission forbids the anchor from interfering with the debate.

“Those people are interrupting only me. They aren’t interrupting anybody else,“ Sobchak said, her voice starting to tremble. “This man (Zhirinovsky) badmouths me constantly – only me. The man calls me a whore and a dirty witch at your program. And you allow this every time. I have my time assigned to me by law and this man constantly offends me.”

“I think it’s horrible,” the host said. “But such are the rules.”

Zhirinovsky, meanwhile, continued relentlessly. “Come on, start crying! Your mom will be here in an instant,” he said. The other candidates weighed in, with Maksim Shevchenko telling the voters: “Don’t believe those tears.”

Eventually, Sobchak was forced to leave the studio, and it was clear that she was breaking down.

Now, personally viewing all this I am commenting and giving my own opinion, hopefully formed in a Christian manner.

Sobchak would be a disaster as Russia’s president. Most Russian people know this. Her personal life and expressed views render her completely unfit and incapable for a job with as much incoming fire as the President of the Russian Federation receives. Just look at all that Vladimir Putin gets from the West these days.

Zhirinovsky, however, degraded himself as a man, in my opinion. By refusing even this very loony woman any dignity, deserved or not, Vladimir Zhirinovsky just proved to the watching public that he is also a very selfish man, unprincipled and at this point I lost respect for him.

It is not being a feminist to note that a man ought to treat ANY woman with dignity. Even prostitutes can change their lives when a man treats them with the respect due their personhood as a woman. We have many stories of saints who have done so, and of women who responded to such care by becoming reformed and even very holy, themselves.

In a nation that is really trying hard to recover much of what was lost in Communism, Russia should be more fearless about disregarding the West and its glitter, because underneath the bright lights and sparkle is a lot of rot that runs against the very state of the Russian soul.

While it is thankfully the case that neither candidate will will the Presidential election on March 18, the personal tragedy these two people exhibited about themselves and one another is a loss for the nation. Russia deserves better, and Mr. Zhirinovsky and Mrs. Sobchak actually do, too. While there is plenty of personal responsibility that each of them must take, we who are in the West, who pridefully act like our ways are the only right ways, ought to stop and consider the commandments of that God we once acknowledged to be our own King and Creator. Everyone lost in this debate.


The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of this site. This site does not give financial, investment or medical advice.

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