It has been a disturbing day. And like all fast moving news stories the known and unknown ‘facts’ shift by the moment. We will learn more as time goes by but we do know a few things as of now.
We know that six people are dead and that one of them was a nine year old girl who was born on 9-11-2001. We know that she was interested in government as being part of the solution and that that is why a neighbor brought her to today’s event.
We know that 13 others were wounded including Congresswomen Giffords.
We will learn more details by the minute and in the hours and days to come.
We know the shooter had ‘issues’ and left behind some pretty weird videos. That he is disturbed is quite clear. Less clear is the full story of why he acted and what imagined grudge led him to justified mass murder, but in some way that doesn’t matter.
We live in an era where political rhetoric lives in the red zone and where outright lies are treated as just another point of view. Everything is relative. A Tea Party fuck from Arizona (named Beck–naturally) told Dave Weigel today that he:
wasn’t looking forward to the coming “finger-pointing” over this incident, which has definitely claimed the life of a judge, John Roll, who’d been protested over an immigration ruling. “People blame the right for Oklahoma City,” said Beck. “People blame the left for the Pentagon being bombed. I don’t know this guy who did this, but there are crazy people in all walks of life. One rotten apple does not make a bad batch.”
As I recall it was Al-Qaeda that bombed the Pentagon and last time I looked they weren’t a left wing group except in the fevered imaginations of wingnutopia. And it is these fever dreams of hate, righteousness and justification that always leads to violence. And yet we are about to be treated to a media bending over backwards to equate right wing violence to left wing violence in America. Hint: there is no equivalence–the Right wins the most violent award hands down. People murdered by right-wing violence in America must be counted in the thousands if not the tens of thousands (and if you count the Civil War then it would be in the hundreds of thousands). The Left in America has never matched the violence of the Right in word or deed. And yet, we are suppose to pretend there is a balance. Fuck that.
Since Obama was elected the Right and the Republican Party have been playing with fire. It has been an endless series of lies designed to gin up paranoia, hate, fear and a call to take action to ‘take back your Country’. It was only a matter of time before somebody got hurt.
For the wingnuts facts no longer matter. Anybody can make up their own facts and talking points to justify any action. I would say that the shooter did this. Perhaps he came up with his own set of imagined facts, grievances and action plan on his own or perhaps he had some help (word is that folks in AZ are looking for others who may have been involved). Maybe this murderer has a poster of Palin taped above his bed and maybe not. Maybe he is an active Tea Partier or maybe not. Maybe he is an active anti-immigrant warrior or maybe not. In the end, I’m not sure it matters.
Whatever we find out it is clear that he has followed the Wingnut game plan and made up a set of facts, crafted some people as the villains of his fantasy and then justified defeating them by any means necessary. In this he is just like Palin or Boehner or Beck or King or any of the fucksticks who incite and organize using fear, ignorance, bigotry and smears. The game plan is to recast your political opponents as monsters who must be destroyed to save the Nation.
With today’s shooting we know–once again–that some of the unhinged will hear that message load and clear. We know once again that these violence ready psychopaths will act when their mind is primed by rhetoric of hate. And we know once again that the TeaBaggers, Wingnuts, grifters and politicians like Palin selling this bile will react with shock that anybody ever took their rhetoric of violence or their lies seriously.
A child was murdered today. She was killed because some think their political gain is justified by any rhetoric, any lie or any action. This myth of wingnutopia that justifies any action in the defense of their fantasized and bastardized notion of liberty is a real threat to America.
I’ve lost all tolerance for those who would excuse and justify this politics of hate. They do not get to wash the blood of today off of their hands. They are splattered with this blood and if we do not take them on there will be more blood in the future as more of these wingnut inspired psychopaths kill again.
This must stop.
Update: This is worth a read.