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Google and Others Embrace Vile Attack on Santorum

When Rick Santorum essentially tied in Iowa, he gave his campaign new life. He also guaranteed America would finally learn just how disgusting, vile and despicable the left is in this country. And how major news outlets and one of the most well-known businesses in the world – Google – are complicit in trying to destroy Santorum because he opposes gay marriage.

Santorum is the victim of what Reuters partner The Wrap and many other organizations call a “Google problem.” That’s quite the understatement. He was attacked with a Google bomb from Dan Savage, a gay advocate and sex columnist who hates straight people who don’t agree with him. He also thinks they should be silenced, bullied and blackmailed. That’s exactly how he’s treated Santorum.

Savage, in an attempt to destroy Santorum on the Internet for all time, held a contest in 2003 and asked readers for the most foul thing they could say to create a new definition for “Santorum.” The dictionary calls that a neologism and readers gave him 3,000 suggestions. In practice, what Savage has done is the lowest form of hate speech. What he picked as a winner is so vile you don’t want to read it or see it or hear it.

But you have to. It’s the top Google search term for Santorum, thanks to an extensive lefty campaign to discredit opponents of gay marriage. To ignore it is to ignore a major issue that is impacting the presidential campaign. It’s like hiding your eyes in the face of danger.

Savage has been trying to destroy Santorum and Google is helping him do it by refusing to adjust the search. The result leads to the website spreadingSantorum.com, Savage has the following foul definition: 

"santorum (san-TOR-um) n. 1. The frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the byproduct of anal sex."

That 16 word definition says more about the left, Google and the major media than any other words ever written. First, Google, the most dominant search engine on the planet, is a super tech company worth about $215 billion. Just one share of Google goes for roughly $666. (Yes, it really does.) One of the company’s guidelines is “You can make money without doing evil.” You can. They don’t.

Google famously has a complex algorithm set up to search sites and determine what the most popular hit is for everything. So Santorum contacted Google and asked for their help. They gave him the back of their hand and refused to do anything. In repsonse to questions from left-leaning Politico, a  Google “spokesperson said that Google does not ‘remove content from our search results, except in very limited cases such as illegal content and violations of our webmaster guidelines.’” In other words, they do it whenever they feel like.

“I suspect if something was up there like that about Joe Biden, they’d get rid of it,” Santorum told Politico. “If you're a responsible business, you don't let things like that happen in your business that have an impact on the country.”

The link to the foul Santorum page is there, but no explanation, apology, nothing. However, when a hate site showed up prominently as readers searched for “Jew,” Google was quick to respond by adding a disclaimer. That reads in part: “If you recently used Google to search for the word ‘Jew,’ you may have seen results that were very disturbing. We assure you that the views expressed by the sites in your results are not in any way endorsed by Google.”

And Google, which won’t reveal how it does its search, is always being manipulated as techies try to figure out how best to play the Google game. To them, this is just someone playing that game.

But Google isn’t alone in aiding the attack on Santorum. ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and CNN have all given cover to Savage’s monstrous activities. ABC has been the worst, with “Nightline” doing a nearly six-minute puff piece

Correspondent Yunji de Nies said of Savage “he’s not always nice.” That’s about as understated as saying de Nies isn’t always a good journalist. In her piece, she mentioned how “Savage doesn’t hide his politics” and that “he famously went after Republican Rick Santorum.” But she lacked the courage to explain what Savage did in detail. That would have damaged Savage’s credibility as an anti-bullying advocate.

That’s right. Much of her piece, and news stories at other outlets, focused on how Savage and his male “partner” have led the “It Gets Better” campaign to discourage bullying of “lesbian, gay, bi, trans and other bullied teens.” Celebrities and even President Obama have done videos for the project. None of the reports noted that Savage, who says he was bullied when he was young, has turned into the personification of what he claims to hate.

In other words, the anti-bullying advocate so hailed by the media is also a hypocrite. He disagrees with the very pledge he claims to support, that “everyone deserves to be respected for who they are.” Everyone, that is, except Rick Santorum or anyone else who opposes Savage’s gay agenda.

But he remains a media darling. The New York Times magazine devoted more than 5,000 words in June to depicting Savage as “old fashioned” and saying, “Savage’s sex advice puts me in mind of a smart, tough old grandmother, randy yet stern.”

His fellow lefties embrace Savage, impressed at how witty he is when he tells HBO’s Bill Maher that he wishes Republicans “were all f--king dead.” Or how he thinks “about f--king the s--t out of Rick Santorum.” Maher’s crowd laughed and applauded at that.

And they think his defining attack on Santorum hilarious, even when he resorts to open blackmail. “Saturday Night Live” and Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show” have both made subtle jokes about the attack. Savage told Mother Jones that he might take down the Internet campaign against Santorum for enough cash. “If Rick Santorum wants to make a $5 million donation to [the gay marriage group] Freedom to Marry, I will take it down. Interest starts accruing now.” And Mother Jones' Stephanie Mencimer had to add a joke. “Santorum may want to consider Savage's offer. Otherwise, he's kinda screwed.”

This putrid attack isn’t the defining battle of the 2012 election, but it does show you where different organizations stand. If Google continues to allow it, it shows it can’t be trusted with the massive power it has achieved. And no network that embraces Savage as a commentator or promotes his hypocritical charity can be taken seriously.

It’s awful to see bullying – especially when news outlets and Google lend a hand.

Dan Gainor is the Boone Pickens Fellow and the Media Research Center’s Vice President for Business and Culture. His column appears each week on The Fox Forum. He can also be contacted on Facebook and Twitter as dangainor.

Dan Gainor is the Media Research Center’s Vice President for Business and Culture. He writes frequently about media for Fox News Opinion. He can also be contacted on Facebook and Twitter as dangainor.