You’ve probably read some pretty nasty stuff about me in the papers recently, and I understand why you’re concerned. They’ve been saying some colorful things, and naturally, you’ve taken them at their word. But I want to assure you that, contrary to what the mainstream media might have claimed, I have not just jumped on you in a deserted underpass, thrust you up against a wall, and punched you several times flat in the face.

The suits in New York have been out to get me from the start. I say it like I see it, and I won’t bend over backward to be politically correct. That’s why they’ve taken against me—you do see that, don’t you?

No, I have not just grabbed you savagely by the throat and demanded your wallet. Let me guess where you got that idea — CNN? NBC? You can’t believe everything Rachel Maddow tells you, OK?

They’ve got no shame at all, these people. I believe in balanced budgets and the Constitution; I think that marriage is between a man and a woman, and that people who want to immigrate to this country should do it legally. And you know how that riles them in the newsrooms—how convenient that the media should embroil me, of all people, in some kind of scandal; how convenient that it should happen to be me that some leftist reporter supposedly saw kicking you to the floor and screaming murderous threats into your terrified face!

Do you see what I’m getting at?

I’m not saying it’s a conspiracy, exactly. Did they all have a meeting around a big round table where they plotted to smear me by telling the world that I am, even at this very moment, rifling through your pockets and tearing your watch off your wrist? Probably not.

It’s more subtle than that—most of the people who work at these major news corporations just come from liberal backgrounds and have left-leaning views that casually inform them in their day-to-day work.

That kind of confirmation bias accumulates over time—a little unchecked source here, an exaggeration there, a minor inaccuracy allowed to go unchallenged—until, bam! It’s playing 24/7 on the cable news networks that I’ve just “pulled a knife on you.” And, presented with that kind of coverage, I can see how a regular person like yourself might have got the wrong idea.

You still there, buddy? Looked like you were passing out for a moment!

So there you have it—I’m not saying it’s entirely a set-up, but ask yourself: Would this be happening to me, and would you be looking at me with the same kind of abject panic in your eyes if I were, say, a Massachusetts Democrat, rather than a guy who just threatened to cut your balls off? It doesn’t seem likely.

It’s the little double standards like that, which can be so infuriating.

I’ve taken up enough of your time—just promise you won’t go believing everything you see on TV. I know that some part of you probably still suspects that I’ve just plunged a knife deep into your guts and twisted it, but honestly, there are two sides to every story. As your twitching body sinks to the floor and you begin to lose consciousness, I want you to remember that there’s a lot more to this than they might have told you.