Giffords Shooting Triggers (Yes Triggers) Red Hot Anti-Rhetoric Rhetoric. Meanwhile, Mexican Murders Mount Monstrously

Like TTAG’s William C. Montgomery, I find it odd not to say disingenuous that the political left has seized on the Safeway Massacre as an outgrowth of strident political rhetoric. Jared Lee Loughner was a loon. Maybe even a gunloon. But the tone of American politics had sweet FA to do with his heinous crime. In fact, it makes not one wit of difference whether Jared Lee Loughner’s politics were left or right-leaning. Nor does it matter that Sarah Palin’s Facebook page used firearms-related metaphors, both linguistic and graphic. And here’s the really ironic part . . .

The anti-rhetoric rhetoric is just as incendiary as the original rhetoric. I’m never heard NPR’s Tom Ashbrook sound so partisan or so enervated. Never. Here’s another example served-up piping hot by the Huffington Post . . .

Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), the third-ranking House Democrat, suggested Monday that the actions of alleged Arizona shooter Jared Lee Loughner were an example of the sort of “Second Amendment remedies” that former Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle referred to during last year’s campaign.

“He saw a Second Amendment remedy and that’s what occurred here and there is no way not to make that connection,” Clyburn told The Charleston Post & Courier in a recent interview.

And here’s HuffPo’s Nick Wing’s response, indicative of the New Age media meme sweeping across America, for the next ten minutes or so, until the tragedy fades from memory and everyone gets back to the business of name-calling. As they should.

And I think that what has happened here is the vitriol has gotten so elevated, until people feel emboldened by this. And people, who are a little less than stable, and people aren’t thinking for themselves or are so easily influenced, they got out and do things that all of us pay a great price for.

The reaction to the Safeway Massacre has once again highlighted the central weakness of the liberal mindset in general, and the pro-gun control left in specific: their over-riding desire to infantilize others. In other words, they assume that the smart (them) must take care of the stupid (not them).

In legal terms, liberals semi-excuse nutcases like Loughner with a judgement of diminished responsibility. It’s OUR fault this happened. WE failed. WE should have outlawed high-capacity magazines. Or spent more money on mental health care. Or avoided using words that evoke images or thoughts of violence.

The UK calls this philosophy and its inevitable result “the Nanny State.” It’s an insidious and profoundly unAmerican concept. And it’s antithetical to the rights guaranteed by the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which gives average ordinary citizens the right to keep and bear (which I translate as carry) firearms.

The Founding Fathers weren’t stupid. They knew that plenty of people were less intellectually gifted than they. Unhinged? Hello? Who in their right mind would cross an ocean to live in a land as rough, uncivilized and violent as early America? And yet they gave all citizens the right to bear arms, without once mentioning a physical, mental, emotional or financial fitness test.

Also worth noting: America’s first politicians weren’t exactly what you’d call reserved in their political rhetoric. Lest we forget, they were revolutionaries, who’d just fought a revolutionary war. Intemperate political speech and guns? But sir! How will we ever survive as a nation? Pretty damn well. So far.

Which segues into a theme I introduced in my video rant: the Safeway Massacre does not indicate that American gun laws are broken. It’s what you might call a normal aberration. Again, I draw your attention to news [via laht.com] coming out of Mexico today, just 1262 miles from Tucson, Arizona:

CHILPANCINGO, Mexico – At least 24 people have been found slain, 15 of them decapitated, in recent hours in the southern Mexican resort city of Acapulco, officials said Saturday.

On Saturday morning, 15 decapitated men were found outside a shopping center along with two threatening messages that authorities did not make public.

Unofficial versions, however, indicated they were signed by the powerful Sinaloa cartel and warned that anyone who tried to intrude upon the gang’s smuggling corridor would suffer the same fate . . .

Separately, a Guerrero state police official, Emmanuel Radilla Hernandez, and one of his bodyguards were killed Friday night when assailants riding in an SUV intercepted them and opened fire.

Police spokespersons, meanwhile, said that another eight people had been found murdered in recent hours in Acapulco, including four found inside a taxi and two left outside a store. All of the killings are attributed to organized-crime elements.

Elements which thrive in a society where the rule of law has disappeared, where, not so coincidentally, the average citizen is unable to defend themselves by force of arms. And the politicians are, for their own survival, mute.

comments

  1. avatar TTACer says:

    Brit Hume pointed out that in the wake of Col. Hassan terrorist attack the lefty apologists tried to paint it as typical “workplace violence” and said we shouldn’t rush to the judgment that it was an act of jihad.

  2. avatar Sundog says:

    Some driving distances via Google Maps…

    Tucson to Acapulco: 1600 miles
    Tucson to Washington DC: 2300 miles (difference is 700 miles)
    Washington DC to Jacksonville FL: 700 miles
    Washington DC to Nashville, TN: 700 miles
    Washington DC to Chicago, IL: 700 miles

    ‘Nuf said?

  3. avatar Ralph says:

    The administration seems gravely concerned about Americans exercising their constitutional rights. No, not under the Second Amendment. I’m talking about the First Amendment. This latest attack isn’t on guns, it’s on speech. Call it “hateful” long enough and it can be banned. It’s the First Amendment that’s in the crosshairs now, and there’s no The Truth About Speech to defend it.

    1. avatar John Fritz says:

      Agreed. This is the first time we have ever had a president we weren’t allowed to criticize or make fun of.

      1. avatar David says:

        In 1798, President John Adams signed into law the Alien and Sedition Acts, the fourth of which, the Sedition Act or “An Act for the Punishment of Certain Crimes against the United States” set out punishments of up to two years of imprisonment for “opposing or resisting any law of the United States” or writing or publishing “false, scandalous, and malicious writing” about the President or the U.S. Congress. There was a time when I thought this blog contained thoughtful discourse. I regret that things have apparently devolved into the political. I do like guns. I do not like the posturing that many people feel is required on both sides.

  4. avatar Dan Baum says:

    John Fritz, see Nixon, Richard; List, Enemies. See Fleischer, Ari: “People ought to watch what they say.” See Bush, George W.; “Free Speech Zones” where protestors could enjoy their First Amendment rights out of sight and earshot of the President.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      So an MMA fighter named Jacob Volkmann (he’s a chiropractor as well as a fighter) humorously calls out Obama and gets a visit from the Secret Service. This isn’t a Nixon “enemies list” deal. This is a frontal assault on the First Amendment and the average Joe and Jane. And it will work, too. When decent people like Dan Baum are beguiled by this pap, the battle is already lost.

      1. avatar JadeGold says:

        Actually, Ralph leaves out a few details. For example, Volkman didn’t just “call out” the President–he says he wated to beat him up.

        1. avatar Robert Farago says:

          Jade, please ping me at guntruth@me.com

        2. avatar Ralph says:

          So do I. When can I expect my visit?

  5. avatar JadeGold says:

    Sorry, we have to give you an “F” in history. In reality, the Founders didn’t give all citizens rights and some states imposed character tests involving race, gender, religion, and economic standing as barriers. Further the Founders recognized some people weren’t as “intellectually gifted” as they were–their response was to deny these people even basic rights such as voting or holding public office and the like.

    A developing meme among rightwingers is that we’ve always had intemperate and inflammatory political speech. This has a kernel of truth but misses several key elements. First, in the late 18th century, literacy rates among white males was about 75%. Second, the transmission of news via newspapers and pamphlets could take several weeks between cities such as Philadelphia and Boston. News from England could take months. Third, the Founders weren’t above punishing political speech; the Sedition Act, for instance, was enacted and allowed prosecution of inflammatory speech. Elements of the Sedition Act survived for about 150 years.

    It’s also important to note that much of the so-called inflammatory speech during the early days of this nation was pretty tame stuff; for instance, Jefferson used a surrogate to attack Washington by claiming Washington was befuddled and under the spell of Hamilton and that Washington sought a return to the monarchy or variations of the theme that Washington was using his office for profit, etc. Nobody was suggesting killing Washington or using violence.

    The rightwing meme also fails that today information is transmitted almost instantly across a wide variety of media. It is virtually inescapable.

    Another point: Aristotle says that rhetoric, in order to be rhetorical, needs to intend to persuade the listener to action. This means that if I call Brad Kozak a “big poopyhead,” I’m neither being rhetorical or violent. However, if I were to go on and elaborate that “big poopyheads” should be subject to violence–I am clearly engaging in violent rhetoric.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      Kicking the crap out of all big poopyheads? Now that’s something we can all agree upon. See, there is common ground.

  6. avatar Wes says:

    Speaking of violent rhetoric and target maps, check out this ad against Representative Dennis Reboletti for voting against a gun-control bill. It’s all there: the target sight, the gun, “you can send a strong message,” “The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence today announced they are TARGETING state legislators who voted against sensible gun laws….” http://www.gunguys.com/?p=3212

    In related news, Rush Limbaugh wondered how talk radio and target sights on maps can be blamed for this but when someone questions the violence and drug use in liberal Hollywood’s movies and TV shows, everyone says there is no link.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      I guess it depends on whose ox is gored. Conservative speech: violent, reactionary, leads to murder. Liberal speech: peaceful, progressive, leads to paradise on Earth. Got it?

  7. avatar JOE MATAFOME says:

    I forgot to give jade an “F” in gun history. If you read her posts, you’ll see that an “F” is probably to high a grade but if I were to go any lower I’d get banned from this site.(and i luv it here so I’ll be nice) lol

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