By Tom Tillison
With emotions running high over the tragedy in Arizona and all the discussion of how this event is being played out in the media, I thought it would be interesting to see what our friends on the other side of the isle have to say about it.
The prevailing theme in the liberal media is that the heightened rhetoric in the political world, brought on by the tea party and conservative talking heads, led to the events that took place on Saturday. A sentiment that is certainly popular among those on the left.
Checking in with the Florida Progressive Coalition Blog, an appropriate measuring stick, I find a blog focusing on the tweets of a handful of "right wingers" in the aftermath of the shooting.
As the title suggests, not exactly a 'fair and balanced' analysis by a long shot...
Florida Right-Wingers Predictably Spew Nonsense In Response to Giffords Shooting
Written by Kenneth Quinnell on 9 January 2011
I took a tour of my Florida Republican Twitter list so see the reactions of those on the other side of the aisle about the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona yesterday. While many of them were completely respectful and appropriate in their comments, there was some pretty appalling commentary as well. And I will admit that while I saw a handful of left-wing comments that weren’t appropriate, they paled in number and intensity of what came from the other side. Here is a sampling of Florida right-wing tweets from yesterday and today…
While mentioning a "handful of left-wing comments", the blogger does not list any in the story and downplays the "intensity" of these comments in comparison to what he found on the right. Apparently, he missed this comment posted on the Daily Kos;
“The Tucson Tea Party will be made to pay for the blood on their hands. An eye for an eye. You want a civil war, you got one. KILL Jesse Kelly for his role, then KILL Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Glen Beck. Whoever puts BULLETS in their HEADS shall be a NATIONAL HERO.”
Our liberal friend then goes on to list various tweets from "right wingers" that he found and offers random commentary. He speaks as if he represents the entire left side of the aisle, often using 'we' and 'us' in his analogy, reinforcing the group-think mentality the left is famous for.
He also presents these tweets as if the few individuals highlighted represent all conservatives, ignoring the typical 'get your goat' tongue-in-cheek sarcasm you often find in the anonymous world of social media.
It is ironic indeed that his comments are often very inflammatory, speculative and, at times, down right irresponsible, the exact case he attempts to make against the 'right wingers'! And, as we see time and again from the left, he assumes the truth with little or no basis in facts and then draws his conclusions, which become ironclad.
A few examples;
"If you convince people who have mental illness that “leftists” have such extreme views, they are going to break out and shoot people because they think they are doing the right thing. The only way they can be convinced of such things is by frequent repetition by right-wingers."
What a statement! The left demonizes the right more viciously than the other way around (see G.W. Bush), yet, the writer seem to think that the mentally ill only hear those on the right?
"No one suggests the right has a monopoly, just a disproportionate percentage of the crazies. And we have a mountain of facts about the rhetoric of the right and numerous passages that the shooter wrote that echo right-wing talk radio and television."
Our liberal friend makes the ridiculous claim that there are more crazies on the right, which is purely a matter of opinion, and fails to site any example of the "numerous passages that the shooter wrote that echo right-wing talk radio and television". Why? Because there aren't any, this is a blatantly false claim.
"To not recognize that some of the rhetoric these people ( Palin, Beck & Rush) have engaged in is violent is to be ignorant or willfully dishonest."
Again, nothing offered to support this accusation. Of the three named, Rush is certainly the most controversial, however, none of these individuals have ever called for violence. Ever! Not once! Another blatant lie.
"Common sense says that if enough people say that Democrats are evil, Communist, socialist, Nazis out to destroy America that someone who has mental issues and loves America will do something about those Democrats, particularly when right-wingers like Palin call for them to do something over and over."
By now, you are picking up the theme...Palin "calls for them to do something? What is this "something" that Palin calls for over and over? A statement based on political ideology that cannot be backed up with facts.
"Beyond that, we have ample evidence that Loughner is either a extreme right-wing Tea Party acolyte or a anti-government Libertarian. In either case, his rantings strongly echo those of the Glenn Becks and Sarah Palin’s of the world…"
All indications are that Loughner shows no clear cut political ideology in his ramblings. What is evident is that he is a very unbalanced individual. The left desperately clings to the notion that he's a 'right wing' defender of the Constitution simply because he mentions it while making a non-sensible comment that the flag is not in the Constitution while he burns the flag. And exactly how many flags have been burned at tea parties?
There is absolutely no question that this guy is not a liberal. No matter what he is, and he’s certainly mentally ill, he’s not a liberal. He may not be a Republican and maybe not a conservative (if he turns out to be Libertarian), but there’s no question that he has been influenced by right-wing talking heads and he repeats many of the same talking points that Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and the rest spew over the airwaves every day.
"There is absolutely no question that this guy is not a liberal." Remind you of Al Gore? "The debate is over..."
There's plenty more, for those who are strong of stomach, you can read the full story here - http://quinnell.us/sspb/
So why does it matter what those on the left have to say? Well, it's important because what we are witnessing is the typical double standard at play here. This blogger is spewing dangerous, hate filled rhetoric that have no basis in truth, yet claims that heightened political discourse in this country has been brought on by the right. And that this somehow played a role in the heinous acts of a madman.
The good news is that we can find common ground here with our liberal friend - the political discourse in this country is dangerously high.
Here's where we may part ways...it's dangerously high because, with the election of Barack Obama, the left over played their hand thinking they had the full support of the American people to transform America into a European Socialist form of government.