Saturday morning, a 22 year old lunatic, Jared Loughner, opened fire in a crowded Safeway parking lot in Tucson, Arizona. His spree resulted in the deaths of six people, including a nine-year old girl and a Federal Judge. His apparent first target was the sitting Arizona 8th District Congressman, Gabreille Giffords. Cable news has been 24/7 since the first reports came in reporting every wrinkle available from this story. This man’s actions are horrific and the nation is equally appalled.
But in the words of Rahm Emanuel, you can’t let a good crisis go to waste.
The crime scene had not been closed before the demagogues from the left began pontificating about the reasons for such an act. Despite the fact that little had been discovered and reported about the man behind this despicable deed, they went on the airwaves to ply their political advantage at the expense of their fellow citizens struggling for life.
Very quickly, we were told that his MySpace page was filled with ridiculous rantings about good grammar, antipathy toward Jews, and concerns about illegal immigration. He listed his favorite books as Mein Kampf and the Communist Manifesto. He has been linked to an anarchical organization. But just as quickly, Democrat lawmakers and pundits began a blame game against “rhetoric” from the Political Right and the Tea Party as being the match that lit the flame of hatred in the heart of this lunatic. History teaches us this is a tactic used by the left when their ideas have been massively rejected by the American people. When the Murrah Federal Building was destroyed in 1995, President Bill Clinton went on the airwaves and blamed Rush Limbaugh for creating the “environment” for such actions. Never mind that the President was trying to divert attention from his own “shellacking” at the polls the previous November and an impending personal scandal.
The Speaker of the House, John Boehner, immediately came forth to say that “an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us”. Republican Lawmakers went on cable shows to express their shock and disgust and call for the nation to unite behind our common revulsion at such behavior. Rather than connect this anarchist to the Political Left, Conservatives have focused on trying to discover how such an individual fell through the cracks.
The Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, Democrat and Rep. James Clyburn, Democrat of South Carolina both went on TV and decried the negative “rhetoric” about immigration reform in Arizona. When questioned as to whether he should be talking that way, or was it his place to be blaming Conservative “rhetoric” before the facts of the case were in, he responded that the viewers would have to decide that. Perhaps this Sheriff is trying to deflect the criticism he is going to get when it is discovered that he might have been the one to fumble the ball on Loughner. As the days pass, more people are coming forward to describe how unstable Loughner was and how they were afraid of him. “Sheriff Dupnik, who is responsible for paying attention to these people in your County?” That’s not a political issue, it’s a law enforcement issue.
Let’s be clear. I am a Conservative and a member of the Tea Party. I know of no Conservative or Tea Party member who uses Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto as political doctrine sourcebooks. Rather, we are opposed to everything those books articulate as true. However, there are those, even federally elected officials, who revel in their association with Socialism. There are those who have spent the past four years cramming Socialist dogma and policy and legislation down the throats of the American people. None of these people are on the Political Right.
I am a defender of the 2nd Amendment, a Constitutional Conservative, and a concealed-carry permit holder. I know thousands of people just like me who do not believe this type of violence has a place in our political discourse. In fact, we are those who seek greater security in the public arena by arming responsible citizens, thus creating uncertainty for people like Jared Loughner to perpetrate their evil. These type acts occur where the perpetrators have a reasonable assurance that there will be no one armed. Need I cite Columbine and Virginia Tech? Conservatives call our school campuses “killing zones” because law-abiding citizens are forbidden from being armed there. Only lawbreakers bent on doing harm to others feel free to bring weapons illegally onto a school campus.
I am a defender of free speech. That includes the kind of “rhetoric” to which Democrat lawmakers are referring. You see, the nation was founded upon an argument. The free speech that the Founders sought actually did result in a shooting war. The republic they founded certified in its first “right” the ability to say politically what one chose to say without resorting to violence. The Left is very devoted to this right when it comes to validating widespread distribution of porn, burning of the American flag, etc., but when a Conservative disagrees with a Socialist-leaning Democrat and provides facts to back up his/her concern, then somehow that is harsh “rhetoric”. Please!
What we learn is that we have to be vigilant when in public and our law enforcement officials must isolate these lunatics as they appear. I do not wish for our elected officials to become less available to voters. This is the foundation of our representative republic. America is bigger and stronger than one crazed shooter. Let’s get on with mourning the dead, healing the broken, and being vigilant as we move forward.