will always be fanatics or psychopaths everywhere willing to eliminate public
figures they abhor. Even more so when the politics of hate poison the national
debate and lenient laws for acquiring firearms invite brutality - both notorious
facts in the United States. … For the umpteenth time, Americans are forced to
cope with an outbreak of violence in their political struggles."
Christina Greene: Born on September 11, 2001 and killed by a would-be assassin's bullet at a rally for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, her death was a particularly cruel footnote to one of the darkest events in recent American history.
There will always be fanatics
or psychopaths everywhere willing to eliminate public figures they abhor. Even
more so when the politics of hate poison the national debate and lenient laws for
acquiring firearms invite brutality - both notorious facts in the United
States. Throughout American history political violence has claimed countless
victims, from presidents and civic leaders, like Lincoln, Kennedy and Martin
Luther King Jr., to ordinary people, like the 168 people killed by an extreme-right
terrorist in the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995.
The emergence of Barack Obama
on the nation's scene, although it filled the majority of the population with hope
and pride, provoked feelings of disgust that
barely disguised their racist roots from a radical segment of society encouraged
by the stridently conservative media. The new president's policies, such as state
intervention to save an economy in tatters, and the fulfillment of his promise
to send to Congress a comprehensive plan to reform the health care system, have
been stigmatized as steps toward the implementation of creeping socialism in
the U.S. All with the support of "liberals" - the Democratic Party
and progressive sectors of the intellectual elite.
Intensifying the climate of
open hostility toward government is the spread of the slander that Obama had been investing
against the core values of the nation, not only because he's a foreigner that
forged his citizenship, but even worse, that he's a closet Muslim. According to
one estimate, close to 30 death threats addressed to the president arrive at
the White House every day - four times more than George W. Bush. At the same
time, what seemed to be a marginal expression of American politics - the
aggressive movement against state activism and the tax system called the Tea
Party - transformed into a powerful force, with strong influence over the
Led by former Alaska Governor
Sarah Palin, the legendary candidate for vice president in 2008, the Tea Party began
a crusade against "leftists" in the mid-term elections last
September. On the Internet, 20 of them appeared behind the crosshairs of a gun
sight. "We are on the list of Sarah's targets," said Democratic
Representative Gabrielle Giffords in March, the 40 year-old candidate who was
running in her second election in Arizona. "When people do that they have
to realize that there are consequences to that action." On Saturday
morning, in front of a supermarket near Tucson, Gabrielle was shot in the head.
Her situation is critical. The shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, 22, conducted a premeditated
The 31 shots from his pistol,
acquired in a shop that sells hunting and fishing gear, wounded 14 people and
killed six others - among them a federal judge, a child and three septuagenarians
- before the assassin was subdued. The bitter irony is that the crime was
perpetrated where Gabrielle periodically held her "Congress on your
corner" events - a meeting with voters, typical of face-to-face contact
between representatives and citizens that is a traditional part of American
politics. Gabrielle also embodied ideas that provoke homicidal fantasies in Tea
Party followers. A fierce defender of Obama's health program, she condemned with
equal vigor the Arizona's draconian immigration law, which authorizes arrest
(and deportation) of undocumented individuals.
Posted by WORLDMEETS.US
The Tucson killings pulled
the rug from under the feet of Republicans, who last week took over control of
the House of Representatives and, tomorrow, intended to put to a vote a bill with
little practical effect, to repeal the health care reform. The initiative, the
first chance for the movement to put the Obama government in the corner, was
suspended. Disconcerted, the Republican leadership ran to deplore the slaughter.
Sarah Palin, for her part, hastened to deny that her preaching may have encouraged
the armed criminal. For the umpteenth time, Americans are forced to cope
with an outbreak of violence in their political struggles.
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