Guilty: Why Republicans Own The Arizona Massacre

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Given the inflammatory, racist, right-wing rhetoric it was only a matter of time before something like this would happened. Did we really expect nothing would,
when politicians like Sharron Angle talked about using “Second Amendment remedies” to change government? How about Sarah Palin and her “don’t retreat,
reload” mantra while putting crosshairs, on maps, aimed at the districts of her opponents?

[Speaking Truth To Power]

As America mourns the six people killed—including a nine-year-old girl—in Saturday’s Arizona shooting rampage, one question now is: isn’t 22-year-old
shooter Jared Lee Loughner an example of the home-grown terrorists being created  by America’s right-wing forces?

Loughner’s shooting spree also wounded 14, including Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who was visiting her local constituents, at an event she dubbed “congress on your corner.” Giffords, a Democrat, 40, survived although a bullet passed through her brain. She remains in critical condition in the intensive care unit.

63-year-old Judge John Role wasn’t so lucky. Judge Role, who lived in the area, was just stopping by to say hello to Congresswoman Giffords. Now he is dead. Nine-year-old Christine Green also died in the carnage; ironically, this child who had an interest in politics was born on Sep.  11, 2001. Christine Green was the granddaughter of Dallas Green, a former Major League baseball pitcher, and manager of the 1980 World Series champs, the Philadelphia Phillies.

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said the congresswoman was a political target. Reportedly, Loughner stood in line, supposedly, to meet the congresswoman, before exiting the line and opening fire on Giffords. The sheriff also cited an incident where a gun was discovered to have fallen from one of her opponents, during a previous speaking engagement.

Moreover, the congresswoman’s office was vandalized—right after her vote for the healthcare bill—and she received numerous threats. The sheriff noted Loughner “has kind of a troubled past.”

In a shocking display of candor, Sheriff Dupnik opined his personal feelings about the current political climate saying “The anger, the hatred, the bigotry
that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous. And unfortunately, I think Arizona has become sort of the capital, we have become the Mecca for
prejudice and bigotry.” Speaking of Loughner, the sheriff added “There’s reason to believe that this individual might have a mental issue, and I think that
people who are unbalanced might be especially susceptible to vitriol.”

The sheriff's words are stunningly accurate. Some Republicans denounced the shooting. House Speaker John Boehner said “An attack on one who serves is an
attack on all who serve.”  And Arizona Governor Jan Brewer said “Arizona is in pain, yes. Our grief is profound.”

Republicans can denounce this horrendous act of violence all they want. However, the truth is: the bloody fingerprints of Loughner’s crime lead right back to
the hateful, racist, right-wing rhetoric that has been whipped-up ever since Barack Obama became the first Black president. Loughner’s rambling writings hint
at an affinity for “Patriot Movement” ideology. The “Patriot Movement” is a racist group, with strong anti-immigration sentiments.

Several times, over the last two years, I’ve written about the dangerous climate being cultivated by those on the radical right. For example, we know threats
against President Obama have been unlike anything ever seen before. We know right-wing militias have mushroomed—since Obama entered the White House.

The Oath Keepers, a militia group of former law enforcement and military persons are creating paranoia about the federal government’s, supposed, attempts to take away rights, like the one to bear arms. Ironically, if that were true, a wing-nut like Loughner would’ve never been allowed to buy any ammo.

Many, in denial, are running from their responsibility in creating this monster, with narrow discussion surrounding his “mental” state. Don’t we realize there’re
untold legions of deranged and unstable people in this country? Have we forgotten those who came to town-hall meetings armed with machine guns? Why didn’t Republicans tell their supporters this was unacceptable conduct?

Some claim both sides of the political spectrum engaged in hate speech. While it’s true there are also idiots on the left, it’s false to pretend they’re, somehow, equally as dangerous as these right-wingers. Many of us vehemently attacked President Bush’s policies, but people on the left never turning up at his rallies with guns.

Republicans will say it’s unfair for them to be held responsible for the hate being fostered by the broadcast purveyors of poisonous prejudice like Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Lou Dobbs and Bill O’Reilly. But why’ve Republicans been silent in denouncing the toxic speech of those who identify with, supposedly, Republican values? Could it be because they know they benefit, politically, from this kind of bigoted belligerence? What else could it be, when, several
Republicans give credibility to the lunacy of the “Birthers,” who claimed President Obama wasn’t born in America, and is a socialist trying to destroy it?

Given the inflammatory, racist, right-wing rhetoric it was only a matter of time before something like this would happened. Did we really expect nothing would,
when politicians like Sharron Angle talked about using “Second Amendment remedies” to change government? How about Sarah Palin and her “don’t retreat,
reload” mantra while putting crosshairs, on maps, aimed at the districts of her opponents?

And what about Arizona Republican Jesse Kelly who ran an ad which read "Get on Target for Victory in November Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office Shoot a fully automatic M16 with Jesse Kelly?" Given the history of American politics—and assassination—why are these people playing with fire?

But, instead of Republicans—and those on the right—taking responsibility for the detestable hate they’ve helped to create, they attack people like Sheriff Dupnik. With that kind of leadership, god help us all.

"Speaking Truth To Empower."

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