Thursday, January 13, 2011

Republi-CON Fear, Anger, Hatred = Violence Yet Again?

UPDATE XI: Allegations of blood libel v. a call for unity, could Palin’s video statement and Obama’s address been more different? Read The New York Times, Study in Contrasts.

UPDATE X: Are high-capacity magazines to blame? Read the Washington Post, Arizona shootings underscore the dangers of high-capacity magazines.

UPDATE IX: Republi-CONs often misstate an opponents arguments before responding. Regarding the debate on the toxic political environment, read the Washington Post, Questions for Charles Krauthammer and others on the right, which notes:

"[W]hat some on the left object to is the rhetoric from the right that tacitly or overtly seeks to deligitimize the political opposition's democratically-obtained hold on power, and flirts with the idea that non-democratic means are an acceptable way of countering or undoing it.

In his original column decrying the current "climate of hate," for instance, Krugman didn't focus on Palin's crosshairs or the right's use of standard-issue war metaphors. Rather, he argued against the right's genuine "eliminationist rhetoric," their "suggestions that those on the other side of a debate must be removed from that debate by whatever means necessary."
This is one of a number of common Republi-CON debate fallacies.

UPDATE VIII: Palin responds. Methinks the lady doth protest too much. Read the Washington Post, The foolishness of the 'blood libel' charge.

And her response does not befit a serious presidential candidate. Compare her response to Al Sharpton's: In MLK's honor, let's strive for dialogue that's passionate but not poisonous.

UPDATE VII: Comedian Jon Stewart, who hosted the Rally to Restore Sanity last year, doesn't blame "the toxic political environment" for the shootings:

"We live in a complex ecosystem of influences and motivations and I wouldn't blame our political rhetoric any more than I would blame heavy metal music for Columbine," Stewart said on "The Daily Show" Monday night. "Boy, would it be nice to draw a straight line from this horror to something tangible, because then we could convince ourselves that if we just stopped this, then the horrors will end."

"You cannot outsmart crazy," Stewart said. "You don't know what a troubled mind will get caught on."

Stewart said he doesn't know "if there is a way to make sense" of the shootings.

Nevertheless, he did stress a need to tone down political "ramblings."

"It would be really nice if the ramblings of crazy people didn't resemble how we talk to each other on TV," he said. "Let's at least make troubled individuals easier to spot."

Watch his "moving monologue":

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Arizona Shootings Reaction
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire Blog</a>The Daily Show on Facebook

UPDATE VI: For a brief history of the violent rhetoric and imagery common in politics today, read the Washington Post, The Tucson tragedy: freedom from violent rhetoric and imagery.

UPDATE V: Is Palin the one now caught in crosshairs?

UPDATE IV: Regarding Palin's claim that the crosshairs map showed surveyor's symbol not gun sights, read the Washington Post, Gunsights or Surveyor Symbols?

UPDATE III: "Some people who study right-wing militia groups and those who align themselves with the so-called Patriot movement said Mr. Loughner’s comments on subjects like the American currency and the Constitution, which he posted online in various video clips, were strikingly similar in language and tone to the voices of the Internet’s more paranoid, extremist corners." Read The New York Times, Suspect’s Odd Behavior Caused Growing Alarm.

Then read the Washington Post, After 'armed and dangerous' messages, who bears responsibility for violence? and The New York Times, Climate of Hate.

UPDATE II: BTW, Palin now says ""we never ever, ever intended it to be gun sights. It was simply cross hairs like you'd see on maps [like a] surveyor's symbol."

More of her Republi-CON revisionist history.

UPDATE: Are you surprised at the shooting, "the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths, about tearing down the government, the anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country . . . the rhetoric about hatred, about mistrust of government, about paranoia of how government operates." Is right-wing media to blame? Read the Washington Post, After Giffords tragedy, fingers point to the media model of confrontation.

The formula is old: Republi-con fear, anger, hatred = violence.

"During the fall campaign, Sarah Palin, the former Republican vice-presidential candidate, posted a controversial map on her Facebook page depicting spots where Democrats were running for re-election; those Democrats were noted by crosshairs symbols like those seen through the scope of a gun. [Ariz. Democrat Gabrielle Giffords] was among those on Ms. Palin’s map. "

The result, read the Washington Post on this developing story, Ariz. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in critical condition after Tucson shooting; eight others injured.

The Republi-CONs have no shame or concern for the violence they may incite.

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