The language of violence and anger in U.S. politics simply has to stop.
After a leading politician had her office door smashed in, she responded to the anonymous vandal by boasting, “I have a Glock 9-mm and I’m a pretty good shot.” Which was irresponsible and dangerous hate talk and likely to lead to tragedy.
The politician was Gabrielle Giffords, and what she said was really entirely reasonable. She was merely defending herself and her employees, and telling her militant critics she would not be pushed around.
Sadly, it did not prevent a crazy from shooting her and killing others. If only the good lady had had her weapon with her at the time.
If anything, however, her language was far harsher than anything Sarah Palin has said, even when the Alaskan was being threatened with gang rape and death, and her family abused and insulted. It was also stronger language than Palin’s rhetorical “Don’t retreat, reload” comment and her website’s placing of targets over congressional districts that were, yes, targeted for electoral campaigns.
In fact, Palin should never have taken this map down from her website. But if she hadn’t done so, the hysterical leftists now calling for her blood would have had even more ammunition — whoops, sorry — to shoot — whoops, even more sorry — at the evil Palin. The same sort of leftists who regularly burned George W. Bush in effigy, made movies proposing the president’s assassination, or beat up opponents of Barack Obama at rallies.
But the gruesome antics of a deranged loner have somehow been blamed not on the man himself, the store that sold him his guns, or the politicians who allowed such stores to sell weapons (including Giffords, who is extremely opposed to gun control), but on Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and conservative talk radio.
Giffords’ father managed to even blame the Tea Party for his daughter’s fate, when we know her assailant formed a hatred for the congresswoman before the Tea Party even existed. Such excesses can be forgiven of a grieving parent, but not the manipulation of the horror that began within moments of it being announced.
Even serious newspapers were indicating the shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, was motivated by opposition to abortion, and his actions were the direct result of right-wing propaganda. Yet there is no indication that he was political but much evidence to suggest he was a lunatic. Mind you, he listed Karl Marx’s The Communist Manifesto as one of his favorite books. Therefore he was a typical socialist. He also habitually smoked cannabis. Therefore he was a typical marijuana user.
So reality cries out to be heard. As it did when Maj. Nidal Hasan shot dead 13 soldiers at Foot Hood in Texas. He was a devout Muslim who listened to jihadist preachers, but we were told his religion has nothing to do with his actions. Now I understand. An insane jerk thrown out of college for being nuts was motivated by Sarah Palin to kill; an Islamic radical slaughtered people because of post-traumatic stress, even though he’d never been to a war zone.
They shoot truth don’t they. Whoops, there I go again.
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