The shooting of U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford and the others is a deplorable event. However, we have heard the ensuing nonsense about political rhetoric before.
In 1995, a deranged knife-wielding man broke into 24 Sussex Dr. as then Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien and his wife, Aline, were sleeping. Afterward, former Prime Minister Joe Clark said, “I think this is an increasingly dangerous time. I think people are very frustrated and the extent of angry rhetoric in the country can lead people to extreme actions. On the other hand, that is part of the risk one runs in a democracy. You can’t cordon yourself off.”
The suspected shooter, Jared Lee Loughner’s YouTube channel makes him look like a lunatic who probably believed he was subject to mind control. At least The Catcher in the Rye didn’t appear in his list of favorite books.
Stand back or you will be run over by the stampeding conspiracy theorists and political pundits advocating everything from more gun control to the arrest of Sara Palin for inciting this, and a wide variety of fund raising on the back of this tragedy.
Nothing new happens in politics.