It’s been three years now since Andrew Breitbart died. I was out of town on work when I first heard of his passing. I remember listening intently to the news from my hotel room that evening. I became suspicious of his death as reporters tried to tie the pieces and the timeline together. Suspicious because I remember that Breitbart had recently announced that he had something very big to announce about then incumbent president Barack Obama. Unfortunately, time ran out before he could let the world know what it was that could potentially shut down Obama’s re-election bid in a heartbeat.
Breitbart was the one who broke the ACORN corruption case wide open, with the help of courageous patriots James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles. Many conservatives have hailed him as their hero for the bold and daring nature with which he approached politics. He wasn’t afraid to argue with anyone, as he’d go onto shows like Real Time with Bill Maher and speak truth, only to be ridiculed by a ridiculously stacked, left leaning liberal/progressive and gullible audience. He put his reputation on the line and backed it up proudly.
I remember, and will probably never forget, seeing him for the first time in 2009 keynote speaking at one of the first major tea party rallies, in Santa Ana, California, on April 15, 2009, tax day. Tea Party groups were beginning to form out of the disgust people felt at how Obama and his administration were sending America down a financially ruinous path. Taxed Enough Already, as corny as the name may sound, was the theme used to try to get people to understand the logic behind why we were protesting. It had absolutely nothing to do with racism. That’s one of the many things the left has claimed but never proved. Breitbart even offered a $100,000 reward to anyone who could produce legitimate video footage with audio of anyone saying anything racist to Rep. John Lewis (D. GA) as he walked through a crowd of protesters toward the nation’s capitol on his way to cast a vote for Obamacare. No one could, though.
As could be predicted, the mainstream media tried to portray these emerging tea party groups as fringe, racist, bigoted, homophobic and xenophobic. Andrew could see this and could so eloquently call them on it. Anyone who has been to a tea party rally knows that those who attend are anything but what the media accuses them to be and do not tolerate that behavior from others. Are there those who take it a little too far? Of course, that happens on each side. Are there those who go, as plants, to deliberately disrupt the event, thereby causing a scene with which to capture on video so that it could eventually reach the media, which will in turn give them ammunition so that they can declare the tea party all those bad things they want them to be? Better believe it.
The media seems to be winning the war on perception. They understand all too well what that means. Andrew Breitbart was acutely aware of this and countered it with his websites biggovernment.com, bighollywood.com and bigjournalism.com. Ironically, he helped Arianna Huffington launch the HuffingtonPost.com website. He was certainly on the cutting edge of the combination of technology and politics.
I didn’t know Andrew Breitbart but I wish I had. He and I were on the same page politically and shared the same taste in music. I’m sure we would have had great conversations about a variety of things. After reading his book Righteous Indignation, I was even more inspired to continue my work as a citizen journalist, as he urged and advised. I hope his secret about Obama is somehow revealed. And I hope the mystery of his death also becomes clear. Breitbart was a son, a husband and a father of four. I wish all the best to his family and that his memory remains alive. Indeed, America lost a conservative hero.