Thoughts on Arizona

No, Sarah Palin did not have anything to do with what a madman did in Arizona.

Yes, some are taking advantage of this to try to discredit conservatives, or at least vent their frustrations.

But yes, it’s time for Palin and fellow Republicans to tone down the “Don’t retreat, just reload” rhetoric.

And yes, it’s worse on the right. Please, Palin’s people, don’t try to tell us those weren’t gunsights on your map.

No, that’s not really the problem. The problem is the attitude that dehumanizes anyone that doesn’t agree with one’s side 100 percent, and yes, both sides are equally at fault. It’s the attitude that accuses President Bush of plotting 9-11. That turns President Obama into a “Muslim socialist who wants the terrorists to win.” That sells a book defining conservatives as “The American Taliban.” That calls someone “The Worst Person in the World.” (I’m sure they’re not.) That spends three hours on the radio and all day on television inflaming passions and mischaracterizing the other side. That defines “real Americans” as those who vote properly. That separates the coasts from the heartland and red from blue.

That secretly, or not so secretly, is glad this happened.

No, we don’t have to hold hands and sing “Kumbaya.”

But yes, we do have to get along.

I close with this plea for reasonableness from Jon Stewart from his Rally to Restore Sanity.


2 thoughts on “Thoughts on Arizona

  1. Probably the best summary I’ve read so far of the response to this sad event. You mention the side that blames Bush for 9/11 and seem to contrast it with the side that calls Obama a Muslim socialist. The problem is that this is sometimes coming from the same side, not opposing sides.

    There is a growing world of radical ideology that is almost beyond left and right. You can hear the Alex Jones Show, for instance, on a local AM radio and hear this talk every weekday. It’s oddly entertaining radio. But it’s scary to think of a listening audience that believes every word of it. (In fairness I don’t know that he’s ever called Obama a Muslim). I shudder to draw more attention to it than it deserves but after this shooting and the plane crash in Austin, it was the first than that came to mind, not Beck/Palin/etc.

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