Monday, January 10, 2011

Jared Loughner not atypical in today's America

This is a guest post by my good friend, Bob Poris.

Jared Loughner, the shooter of  Representative Gabrielle Giffords, is not atypical.

He was disturbed but not enough to be institutionalized! He is not atypical at all. Many conspiracy advocates believe in a variety of wacky scenarios:  the so-called birthers insist Obama was born out of the country; others are convinced President Obama is a secret Muslim; some think that Socialists are taking over the government and that all liberals are socialists, etc. 

Many relatively respectable people either believe these things or are unsure as to their veracity. Some go too far and encourage violence by their speech or actions. We cannot arrest or isolate all of them.

Listen to Beck, Limbaugh and even Bachmann and Palin sometimes. They talk of people trying to take over the government or who have already taken it over, so WE have to take it back. What does that mean to the gullible - the ignorant and easily influenced? We saw some of them at various political rallies with their goofy signs.  We saw how they shouted down their opponents or used other means to intimidate them. 

It is reasonable to assume some of these folks have enough violence festering within them to go off the deep end. We have no way of knowing.  But what does it mean to them when they see members of the U.S. Congress encouraging mobs on camera! 

We saw this kind of intimidation in 2000 during the counting of chads in Florida.  Goons were flown in from Texas to intimidate the counters in Florida.  Someone paid them and organized them!  These people are the enemies of democracy and a danger to our country!  

There are always goons available.  Hitler had the Brown Shirts; Mussolini and Stalin had their followers ready to frighten any opposition.  Intimidation and scare tactics work! 

We must become better informed so as to be aware of dangers of organizations that have enough money to sway voters and elected officials. 

We need debate between opposing views without demonizing one side or the other.  Our politicians and our media must encourage responsible debate within reasonable boundaries.

1 comment:

cieldequimper said...

Clapping hands BUT better informed? Is that at all possible considering the level of education of the masses (same problem in Europe)? Shouldn't the masses inform themselves (i.e. by reading various opinions -oh but I forget the NYT is demonised outside of Boston-NYC-Philly...)
Is better information at all possible when politicians don't work for the good of their country anymore but for their own personal shortsighted achievement? When the masses NEED to hear what they WANT to hear?
Am I being too pessimistic here?

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