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Our Raucous Democracy, The Blame Game and the Arizona Shooting

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Posted on January 9 2011 2:22 pm
Michael Finch is the Chief of Operations of the David Horowitz Freedom Center and a contributor to FrontPage Magazine and NewsReal Blog.

What a relief! President Obama can pull FBI Director Mueller back from Arizona and call off the investigation into the shooting of Congresswoman Giffords. The smoking gun has been found.

It is obvious after listening to the Sunday morning news shows that the shooter had been listening to conservative talk radio, was heavily influences by the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, loose gun laws in Arizona, and the hate discourse that is created by right wing organizations and politicians. Sherlock Holmes has nothing over David Gregory.

Gregory in questioning newly elected Congressman Raul Labrador of Idaho, said “I mention the Tea Party, not to assign blame, but….” Well, then why mention it? By opening the discussion with that statement, Gregory, of course, is doing exactly what he says he isn’t doing. Assigning blame. Gregory’s performance this morning, from someone who once in awhile, shows signs of being even-handed, was shameful. Feeding the idea that this deranged idiot in Arizona was a Tea Party, Sarah Palin plant, is despicable.

A quick look at Loughner’s background shows that he read the Communist Manifesto, Mein Kampf, was anti-God, and — if he holds any political philosophy at all — would be classified as an extreme anarchist. What in the fuzzy reaches of the minds of the parade of Democratic politicians and their lackeys in the mainstream media would connect that philosophy with Constitutional Conservatives? It doesn’t connect at all, but that is not the point; this is a teaching moment for the Left.

Which is why, following immediately on the heels of their dissecting the causes of the shooting, the post-counseling has already begun. On “Meet the Press,” we got schooled on ethics, racial harmony, peace and justice by the Congressmen Cleaver and Grijalva and Congresswoman Wasserman-Schultz. We must tone down the criticism and our political discussion must become more “civil” or more violence will ensue.

Our heated discourse must give way to the civility of yesterday. By that of course, they must be speaking of the civility of “Blood for Oil,” “Bush lied, people died,” the Jim Crow Republicans, Republican Nazis and the mantra that the Religious Right is more dangerous than the Taliban. Yes, the nostalgia for those “civil” days of discourse makes me wistful.

We know what is happening of course. “Civility” in politics means Conservatives agreeing with the Left. It calls for muted objections and ceding the moral high ground to the other side. Then, and only then, we will all get along and have peace and civility in our politics.

A cursory glance at American history would show that civility in politics has never been the norm. American politics is raucous, heated, fiery, and yes at times hate filled and dirty. And in tragic, rare cases, it turns violent. 19th Century American politics was filled with the dirtiest campaigns, fights (literally) at conventions, and the often final arbiter of politician “discussion”, the duel.

Obviously, we are not calling for the return of fist fights at Conventions and duels to settle our political differences, but in a free and open democracy that allows for and encourages dissent, politics often is a raucous, mud slinging enterprise. And we are thankful for it, for that freedom is what has kept this government thriving and free for over 230 years.

Cuba has political harmony, no disagreeable discourse happens down there. Is that what we want? In the spirit of cooperation, I will not assign any preference for those thoughts to Messrs Grijalva and Cleaver.

We allow freedom and dissent, but we are also a nation of laws. Loungner needs to be dealt with swiftly and once found guilty needs to be sent to his maker post haste. Our love of freedom did not cause this tragedy, human nature did.

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