There are two types of Tea Partiers/hardcore conservatives right now: those who are blaming everyone else for the attempted assassination of Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona, and those who are issuing “it’s such a tragedy” missives from their oak desks while privately thinking “…but maybe a few of those liberals will think twice from now on.” It doesn’t really matter; they both have blood on their hands, and nobody should be afraid to say it.
Of course, it was a deranged fucktard who actually pulled the trigger, but anyone not looking at this in context is either an imbecile or in a coma. Even your most repugnant Republican blowhard assmonkey will be backpedaling furiously over the next week or so, no doubt bemoaning “how low the level of discourse has sunk” in this country, even though they’re the cynical bastards that dragged it there.
But even that contains a false equivalency. “Discourse” implies two parties who are participating equally, when the fact is that Republicans and conservatives have knowingly and repeatedly brought up gunplay, violence, 2nd-amendment remedies and the kind of dehumanizing vilification that conjures up only one solution. The dangerously moronic Sarah Palin, as many of you already know, put a gun crosshairs on Giffords’ district, and crybaby twat John Boehner said his opponent “may be a dead man” after voting for Obama’s health plan.
You have to go pretty goddamn far into liberal arcana to find anything remotely resembling that kind of wink-nudge assassination rhetoric of the Right, probably as far back as Leon Czolgosz, but just the obscurity of that name should speak volumes. Instead, American assassinations look something like this:
• Huey Long, populist Senator from Louisiana, shot in 1935
• Albert Patterson, democrat-elect Alabama Atty. General, shot 1954
• JFK, shot 1963
• MLK, shot 1968
• RFK, shot 1968
• Harvey Milk and George Moscone, shot in 1978
• Allard Lowenstein, Democrat NY-5, shot 1980
• Tommy Burks, Democrat from Tennessee HR, shot by his Republican opponent, 1998
• Bill Gwatney, Chair of Arkansas Democratic Party, shot 2008
• and now judge John Roll and others surrounding Democrat Gabrielle Giffords on Saturday.
A few things about this list – successful assassinations in this country are, thankfully, quite rare. Which is good for progressives, because we’re always the motherfuckers getting shot. Sure, both sides have their “crazies”, but nine times out of ten, conservative crazies play for keeps.
No doubt I’ll get the usual emails from right-wingers telling me about Central America and socialist leftists, but please do me a favor and fuck off. Writers with journalistic integrity are not allowed to say what I can, what pretty much every progressive already knows: your side is obsessed with binary equations of good and evil, violent revolution, religious fundamentalism, and view each act of kindness to those less fortunate as an attack on your precious rights, punishable by automatic weaponry.
Hell, I jokingly tried to give you your own country: Gunland!. And it wasn’t prescience, it was obvious to me in August 2009 when I wrote “the Republican Party is revealed for what it has become: asinine, backwards, hypocritical enemies of progress who probably wouldn’t mind a lone gunman doing their dirty work for them.” And then there was that whole entry fretting about this possibility a couple of years ago. And I’m no goddamn Nostradamus for sure.
Those who say “guns don’t kill people, people do” miss the sunrise and sunset. The right wing, aided by unlimited cash and cable news networks, has pushed the goalposts of dialogue so far away from reality that they win every game before it’s played. But in their frothing haste, they forget an important element: it’s not just the normal folks who move with the goalposts, it’s the lunatics as well. What used to be their quietly-held thought has now become a cause worth killing for.
Tell you what, Palins and Angles and Boehners and Becks of the world… you get to use bullseye targets, cute 2nd amendment jokes, racist comparisons to the Civil War, and speak hauntingly of the “tree of liberty” being fed “with the blood of tyrants” IF you also claim partial credit for the whackjobs who take you seriously. If not, you’re just another coward grinning ghoulishly from a safe, grassy knoll.