09 January, 2011

In Which We Interrupt The Usual Posting Schedule To Rant About Politics

Gabrielle Giffords, Democratic nominee and gen...Image via Wikipedia

6 people were killed and 13 (there is a range of numbers) people injured in Arizona because a gunman tried to assassinate Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords on Saturday. She's still alive and in critical care, after a bullet went through her head.

In the attack, U.S. District Judge John Roll was killed, along with Gabe Zimmermann, one of Giffords's aides, and a 9-year-old girl named Christina Greene.


In addition, all the victims are in serious and critical care.

Why did this happen? Oh, because of politics of course.

Jesse Kelly the Tea Party candidate who lost the election against Giffords and a former Marine, posted a picture on his website of himself in military uniform and encouraged people to pick up M16 rifles and shoot them to prevent Giffords from winning the election.

His spokesperson said: "I just don't see the connection".

Oh. Really. You don't see the connection between a candidate encouraging people to shoot a gun at someone and then someone actually going out and shooting a gun at someone?

How can someone not see the connection there?

Sarah Palin, who may or may not run for US President in the 2012 elections, (I desperately hope she doesn't run--please tell me she isn't going to run) made up a map of the USA and put crosshairs on certain Districts in the country because she didn't like their politics.

(She also tried to get people to chant KILL HIM at some of her rallies--meaning Barack Obama, of course.)

This is crazy. American politics has always had a certain amount of nastiness, but people were killed on Saturday and believe me, that's taking the nastiness to a whole new level.

Isn't a whole lot easier, and smarter, and more rational, to just sit down and argue and debate the way a democracy is supposed to work? Last time I checked "democracy" did not include attempting to assassinate the people who were elected in free and fair elections.

It seems like no one wants to be reasonable anymore. Yes, I can see demonstrating and protesting and sending angry emails to your politicians but KILLING PEOPLE?

That makes no sense.

Have we gone over some kind of cliff?

I get that people are angry, and that they don't like healthcare and the debt and government policies and higher taxes and cap-and-trade and a whole lot of other things because people are always angry about something, but is this kind of reaction going to get what they want?

By vandalism? By shootings? By irrational, knee-jerk reactions?

I hope this is the first and the last sort of attack there is here in the USA, but I have a bad feeling there might be more awful news in the future.

What are your thoughts?

-----The Golden Eagle
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Madeleine said...

The incident leaves me cold. I cannot conceive of anyone wanting to do such things, but it happens all the time under various guises poiltical, religious etc. As you say it is all completely crazy.

Charles Gramlich said...

Another sickening act of violence. It seems very very likely that it was politically motivated, and maybe if it was people will "WAKE THE HELL UP" a bit. Rhetoric is not always safe. It leads to consequences. You preach hate and you get hate. If the pols would preach a little tolerance and cooperation maybe we'd get that.

Hannah said...

When I first heard about this on the news I couldn't believe it had happened! I was in Arizona just DAYS ago! This is disgusting. The problem is that it's so easy for psychos to get automatic weapons and create a mass murder. I was shocked when I read that Sarah Palin tried to get people to shout "kill him" in reference to Barack Obama. She has to realize what power she has over many people. That kind of thing is not acceptable. We live in very scary times.

Tony Benson said...

Sarah Palin is a dangerous and frightening person. She represents a minority view, but there are plenty in that minority, and they are at the extreme end of extreme.

We all have the right to free speech, and that includes Sarah Palin as well as democratically elected politicians. However, when violence enters into the picture democracy is replaced by fear and intimidation.

Sarah Palin would do well to recognise that if violence becomes a part of politics then she will have a much shorter life. She should calm down and learn to effect change through adult dialogue, not the rhetoric of hate.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

It's sad and pathetic what happened in Arizona. And yes, I do see the connection.
People are angry because they wanted change - and it hasn't happened. Things have gotten worse, not better.
Of course, I'm sure if we went back to the times of the revolutionary war, we'd be shocked at what took place then. But we should know better now.
Proves there really is a devil...

Old Kitty said...

I'm horrified, completely. That poor little girl. And those killed and injured. Completely unnecessary and brutal and devoid of reason. A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves for fostering such a poisonous environment. Ashamed. They have blood on their hands and no amount of denial will wash it off.

Take care

Jules said...

My Little Golden,
I do not want to write a book on this but... first and for most prayers for the families of the victims.

Second, though this does have some political bearing I believe this more fanatical behavior, as in neo-nazis or skinheads. Witnessing these people up close when I worked in Federal prison truly opened my eyes. These people will always be dangerous and killing is a way of life for them.

This is where the term "be vigilant" comes in. It is the fact the signs were there and no one paid attention that truly takes my breath away.

Not giving up hope on us!
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Theresa Milstein said...

I agree with virtually everything you say. We've been heading in a scary direction, and I fear the inciting rhetoric and violence will continue.

Simon Kewin said...

It's horrific and terrible.

I read about the Tea Party and Sarah Palin etc. with a mixture of disbelief and bewilderment. These people are real aren't they? They're not in some far-out parody? Just checking.

Sure I understand about anger and feeling disenfranchised. But resorting to the gun is going to fix nothing and endanger everything. From over here in the UK the "right to bear arms" just sounds weird, I'm afraid.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

I felt sick and near tears all day yesterday and still do for that matter.
If we had more comprehensive health care perhaps unbalanced people would get treatment or at least be identified and not be allowed to possess guns.
And politicians, talk show hosts and everybody else need to think about consequences before mouthing off. Inflamatory comments that spread hate and fear do not make a better world.

klahanie said...

I'm just wondering why such horrible events, seem to be, sadly, an ongoing theme in America.
Canada, where, percentage wise, more folks own guns, you hardly ever hear of such awful tragedies.
In peace and respect, Gary

Brian said...

I feel so bad for the families of those that were killed and hurt, my heart aches for them.

mist of the blossom rain said...

This was such a horrifying thing that happened, and such a sad and upsetting one. There are so many things that drove this person to such violence, and just like you said, we live in a country that lets you express yourself freely and in non violent ways, and by not taking advantage of these rights, and just going out and shooting people, is very ignorant.

Janet Johnson said...

Wow, I hadn't even heard about this. I'm really just speechless. This isn't what our country is about. It makes me so sad to see people letting anger control them . . . to help them justify unjustifiable acts.

Jemi Fraser said...

I'm up in Canada & hadn't heard this. This is horrific! Violence is escalating each and every day - and people are becoming immune to its effects - it's just like watching tv or playing a video game. We really, really have to fix this.

Anonymous said...

I was shocked yesterday and kept refreshing news sites to find out more about this sad event.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately history is littered with political assassiantions so I don't think this will end. Thoughts and prayers to the victims in the hospital and all those affected.

Mason Canyon said...

I so agree with what you said. I'm afraid that we will hear of this happening again.

Thoughts in Progress

Darlyn said...

This is shocking! Why don't they just accept that they lost in election and just move on? i felt pity at politicians sometimes. they don't think when they talk or voice out something horrible like that.

Jennifer Hillier said...

I feel like the world has gone nuts. This story horrifies me. It makes me sick to my stomach.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

And I've been reading the reports on the shooter - all the warning signs were there. His YouTube rants, getting kicked out of college, purchasing guns - the kid was deranged. Why did no one see it? Too many sick people out there.

Talli Roland said...

I heard about this and I couldn't believe it. It's scary what's happening in the far right in America - I really can't understand it.

N. R. Williams said...

There is no end to evil in the world. I suspect that elected officials will now be protected by the Secret Service.

As for Sarah...well, she loves Alaska so she can stay there.
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Patricia Stoltey said...

One of the saddest parts of this incident is how quickly the media and both extremes of the blogger world jumped to conclusions and spread vicious rumors, most of which weren't true. I was shocked at some of the lies and hateful comments I saw on Twitter and Facebook, and I'm seeing it again in blog posts where "information" is supplied with no link to the facts.

And if you look within the comments on this very post, you'll see a bit more of this same inflammatory rhetoric. This is so sad, and it demeans the honorable, fine folks killed or injured in this horrible attack.

Adria said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Adria said...

My mom and I have been talking about this the last couple days...

I can't believe all of this. Killing? Really? They are taking someone's life. It just makes me sad and it makes me lose faith in people. :(

brave chickens said...

I heard something about Arizona and a shooting on the news but didn't know why. Thank you for your post. It's horrible when INNOCENTS die :(

btw, you have to read CHERUB as soon as you can :)

The Golden Eagle said...

Madeleine: Yes, it does. :(

Charles: Maybe . . . it would definitely help if they did!

Hannah: I was shocked when I heard about it, too.

It is easy for people to get weapons.

Tony: I agree, people have their right to free speech--it's just when that "free speech" turns nasty and violent.

Alex: I agree.

Things in the Revolutionary War times were bad, but that was centuries ago, not now.

Old Kitty: Rhetoric right now is nasty; on all sides, people are getting violent in the remarks they make and the things they say.

And now--surprise!--something's actually come out of it.

Jules: Of course. The families whose loved ones were caught in the conflict must be going through so much right now.

It is amazing that people don't notice the people who do these kinds of things, before they happen--the man in Tucson proved to be mentally disturbed for years.

Theresa: Me, too.

Simon: Yes, they are real . . . along with their actions.

Many Americans are definitely for the right to bear arms. Personally, I'm not, or at least to people who would use them against people, animals, or just out of anger.

Tricia: Definitely. People like the gunman in Tuscon would be found--and treated--long before anything violent happened, if only people paid more attention to those around them.

Not much comes from nasty rhetoric, I agree.

The Golden Eagle said...

Gary: I wonder that as well. But America's history has been fairly violent, with sudden political upheaval happening all too often . . .

I don't know why there would be such discrepancy--but I suppose it, too, has to do with the culture.

Brian: Yes; my thoughts are with the families of the people who were caught in the shooting.

Emily: It is--not just ignorant, but a misinterpretation of how society is supposed to work, without violence and without hurting other people.

Janet: It makes me feel sad as well.

Jemi: Definitely.

Medeia: I did the same thing.

Stephen: Sadly, yes.

Mine as well.

Mason: Afraid, and worried.

Darlyn: Think before you speak. It's such a common saying, but unfortunately, so many people don't follow it--I know I'm guilty of it sometimes.

Jennifer: It's disturbing, sad, and awful to hear about these things . . .

The Golden Eagle said...

Alex: I heard that one the news, too--it's amazing that someone didn't pick up on the fact that this person had something wrong with him.

Talli: Neither can I.

Nancy: Well, if it keeps them safe, then I hope they are!

Patricia: I'm not on Twitter or Facebook, so I don't know what people are saying there, but there are a lot of different opinions covering the Internet, some of which have no connection to reality.

It is sad about the people who were injured and killed.

Adria: It's saddening for humanity when things like this happen, as well as for the people directly involved in the shooting.

Brave Chickens: You're welcome--I'm glad it helped.

I agree completely.

It's on the TBR!

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