The Shooter Is to Blame for the Giffords Assault

Monday, 10 Jan 2011 01:06 PM

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As Americans and simply decent human beings, all of us should be shocked and saddened by Saturday’s tragedy in Tucson, Ariz. Nineteen shot. Six are dead, including a federal judge and an innocent 9-year-old girl.

And a talented United States congresswoman lies in a coma after being shot in the head. This is about tragedy and humanity. This isn’t about politics. There is nothing to spin here. A deranged man went on a killing rampage — no more, no less.

This is no different than the Columbine, Colo., high school massacre of a decade ago.

Did the media ask what the politics of the Columbine shooters were?

That tragedy was about violent, mentally unstable, murdering madmen shooting everything in their path. Just like Saturday’s shooting rampage.

When crazy people go wild, why do we look to blame someone, or some political philosophy? The blame is on the crazy person.

Yet on Saturday, as we surfed the Internet and watched the TV news, we saw the “blame game” on display again. Geraldo Rivera on Fox News attributing culpability to the tea party . . . and even trying to tie in Sarah Palin to boot.

We heard liberal Democratic Arizona Congressman Raul Grijalva blaming the tea party. We read leftist columnists at Huffington Post calling for reining in the gun industry (even though Rep. Giffords strongly supports the Second Amendment).

Giffords was barely out of surgery when the angry left had already formed a consensus — let’s blame the tea party. Never let facts get in the way of a good liberal media lynching.

There has never been even one reported incidence of violence in the last two years at any tea party event in America. To my knowledge, there has never been one reported incidence of violence anywhere in this entire country committed by anyone tied to a tea party.

Yet the liberal media and the angry left drone on with their slanderous storyline, attempting to paint the tea party and those who support smaller government as nutty and violent.

To the contrary, the shooter named “The Communist Manifesto” as one of his favorite books on his MySpace page. Shouldn’t the media be making a connection to the left if this is the case?

A former classmate described the shooter as a leftist. But that connection has not been mentioned by any media talking head I've seen. And why no mention of the fact that “Mein Kampf” was the shooter’s other favorite book? Like me, Giffords is Jewish (the first Jewish representative from Arizona).

If the shooter is a fan of Hitler’s writings, and tried to assassinate a Jewish member of Congress, why isn’t he being painted as an anti-Semitic white supremacist?

Gabrielle Giffords is not a liberal congresswoman. She supports gun rights and wants to seal the border. She comes from a prominent family of Republican businesspeople.

She is the only member of Congress married to an active military member (an astronaut). She is nationally known as a blue dog Democrat.

She has more in common with Rush Limbaugh than Nancy Pelosi. So how would this assassination attempt by a deranged shooter be in any way tea party-related? It isn’t. But that would spoil the liberal media’s narrative.

We live in a world where the mainstream media and Hollywood glorify and hype violence 24 hours a day. “If it bleeds, it leads” is the mantra of TV news directors from coast to coast.

The evening news is filled with murder, rape, and violence sensationalized to pump up ratings. Even TV sports are in the business of promoting violence.

Watch any video game, any movie, virtually any popular TV show — the common theme is ever more extreme levels of violence.

We should all support free speech and the right of the TV, movie, or media industries to put whatever they want on the screen. I do. But if the media is going to look for someone to blame (in order to create controversy and pump up their ratings), shouldn’t they look in the mirror at their own contributions to the glorifying of violence?

In the end, our thoughts should not be engaged in the blame game. Our thoughts and prayers should be with Rep. Giffords, her hero patriot husband, and all the victims of this horrendous act of senseless brutality.

Wayne Allyn Root is a former libertarian vice presidential nominee and now serves as chairman of the Libertarian National Congressional Committee. He is the best-selling author of "The Conscience of a Libertarian: Empowering the Citizen Revolution with God, Guns, Gold & Tax Cuts." His website is ROOTforAmerica.com

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