Sunday, January 09, 2011

A Rolling Tragedy

Does anyone believe that the political violence in Arizona this weekend that seriously wounded a Congresswoman, killed a U.S. District Judge, a 9-year old girl, a 30-year old community activist, a 76-year old pastor and two other septuagenarians along with wounding another 14 people, is going to be the end of it?

Does anyone believe that any of the violent rhetoricians, from Beck to Palin, are going to take even a modicum of responsibility for shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theater?

I think we're about to see the shunning of Sarah Palin, especially by the GOP elite. You can't propagate something like this:

..and try to justify it by saying that it's "It was simply crosshairs like you'd see on maps," as Palin's spokeswoman, Rebecca Mansour, has laughably tried to ass-cover with on TV, post-shootings. This is just too yucky, too ugly, and since everybody knows that Palin is essentially a grifter with no cause other than herself, and no policy intelligence beyond mean and pandering to the lowest resentful denominator, she'll be on the downward slope. Watch to see if they start cutting her time on Fox.

As for Arizona, it's the new Florida, the new South Carolina, the new Texas:

But after the fatal shooting of six that left Representative Gabrielle Giffords critically injured, Arizona has shifted from a place on the political fringe to symbol of a nation whose political discourse has lost its way.

The moment was crystallized by Clarence W. Dupnik, the Pima County sheriff, who, in a remarkable news conference on Saturday after the shooting, called his state “the mecca for prejudice and bigotry.


While many states have nonrestrictive gun laws, Arizona’s zeal for weapons has often made headlines. It recently became one of just a few states with a law that allows people to carry concealed guns without a permit. Last summer, Ms. Giffords’s Republican opponent, Jesse Kelly, had a campaign event in which voters were invited to “shoot a fully automatic M-16” with him to symbolize his assault on her campaign.

The state also allows for weapons in bars, which is unusual. Last year, an unsuccessful candidate for Congress, Pamela Gorman, ran on a pro-fun platform; a campaign video depicted her firing off rounds several times.

This is the state that made ethnic profiling a police responsibility. Add to it this piece of Arizona Tea Party electioneering:

I don't see Arizona tightening up their guns laws anytime soon, not with a non-leader like hack Governor Jan Brewer, not with such hatred for "the other" in their legislative body. America has long had a love affair with guns and if Columbine didn't end it, high school students for heaven's sake, than why should this?

The nation will be keeping an eye on how our leaders -- particularly those on the Right -- respond to this event over the next few days and weeks ahead.

1 comment:

slick said...

This negates one of the key arguments gun-zealots use - that allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons somehow prevents violence. Clearly that is not the case. Arizona's gun-happy citizens have that "right," but it certainly didn't prevent the senseless murder of six people and the wounding of 14 others when a concealed weapon was brought out into the open and fired.

We live in a gun-crazed culture. Look at any poster/trailer for a movie or TV show and chances are, you'll see some self-assured character toting a semi. The message is clear - "Want to be tough? Pack heat."

Save lives; stop the madness.