The only thing worse than yelling "you lie" at the president of the United States is not standing by your remark and apologizing for it later under pressure.
I may be a minority in this country, but I detest fake civility here. I loved the good old days when politicians called each other liars, before they discovered weasel words like "prevaricating" and "misrepresenting the truth."
That's why it's baffling that Representative Joe Wilson would later back down after calling President Obama a liar. What's the big deal? After all, the president had, just moments earlier, accused (without naming her) Sarah Palin of lying and Wilson, in a moment of passionate chivalry (ill-timed perhaps) responded in kind.
When it comes to the health care debate, there is simply no way that both sides can be right with their wildly differing projections of how reforms will affect patients and how it will all be paid for. Someone may very well be lying and it's up to the American people to figure out which side is doing it, Republicans or Democrats.
On Wednesday night, President Obama called Sarah Palin and, by inference, his critics, liars. Joe Wilson, called the president, and by inference, his supporters, liars. One of them is probably right.
Mark Joseph is a producer and author. He is the editor of Bullypulpit.com.