This was actually a reply to a faithful reader at GOPCLownShow, a Republican named Jana. Goodness knows why Jana comes here to “GOPCLownShow”, as this is meant to poke fun at the ridiculousness of her party, but she has conducted herself with the utmost decorum and civility — and so, I find myself glad she’s here. This morning, I replied to her comment regarding right wing violence and her idea that both sides do it. As soon as I posted it, I got an email saying this should be a post…So here it is. An Easter morning post, hoping for the best for this country. No clowns in this post. Just a lot of grief over where the clowns have taken us.
Ok, I’m glad you are still engaged here. I can tell you are a civilized person who honestly believes what you’re writing…but you are mistaken on a few things. Let me start by saying that I only bother to reply to you because I do care about this country, and I want your party to get its act together. You seem like a beacon of hope for that possibility. But first, you’re going to have to get real. So pardon me, but I’m going to be blunt here.
“Harsh words coming from both sides”, Jana? You’re attempting to make a false moral equivalence between the left and the right.
Is that what you call the DHS warning Americans that their biggest danger comes from right wing radicals? “Harsh words” “coming from both sides” is a false equivalence and a sad attempt to say both sides do it equally, when the facts to not bear it out.
The left is not known for its racist tendencies nor its violence. The meme of radical lefties is from the 1960’s. It is now 50 years later. A half a century. Yet the right clings to this,as indeed, they cling to all things from the past.
You can’t argue the facts by going to Breitbart’s site and coming up with a few examples you think counter the overwhelming facts of right wing violence. Almost every single one of the cop killers in the past year was a far right extremist, who killed innocent people after going nuts because some clown leader in the Republican party told him Obama would take his guns. These people are so misinformed that they think cops are part of the federal government. How can you sit by while this is going on, while your own citizens are terrorized by LIES perpetrated by Republican leaders, and NOT stand up for what is right?
In America, using violence because you do not like someone’s political opinion is terrorism. Our system is set up that we VOTE. That is how we voice our opinions. Yet when the right loses, they do THIS crap– they did it under Clinton (remember Timothy McVey?) and now they’re doing it under Obama. They terrorize this country with false rhetoric until their nuts go crazy and then they sit back and say they never condoned violence. No, they pandered to the worst in their constituents, stoking paranoia and fear, until the crazies go off.
How about Dr Tiller’s murder? Is that how the right resolves conflicts of ideas? And if you say lives were at risk, do you think we didn’t feel that way when Bush started an illegal war, which cost thousands of lives? But violence is not the answer. And I find it odd that I have to say this to the party which claims to have a special relationship with God. Jesus did not condone violence. Jesus would not approve. There is NO justification for the kind of behavior coming from the leaders of the right. NONE.
Nonetheless, let’s pretend the two sides were equal. I would NEVER align myself with people who conducted themselves like the right is conducting itself. They cheered Joe Wilson on, they act like school yard bullies in congress now, they spit on African American senators (yes, this was witnessed by press as well as congressional leaders and the mere suggestion that a civil rights leader would lie about this is beyond the pale), they yell “faggot” at another representative, they say they want America to fail, they do not support our President no matter what he does, they call him a Nazi and a Muslim (as if being a Muslim were a bad thing), they do not support America — all because they LOST an election. Well, they were calling him a Nazi before he won the election.
And where were you then, when the RNC mailed out emails and fliers with kentucky fried chicken over Obama’s face, and portrayed him as a monkey? Or the RNC headquarters where they portrayed him as Hitler in posters? This is OK?
I worked on Obama’s campaign and when the press started attacking Palin’s kid, he sent us all an very pointed email, saying not one word about her family. Keep it on the issues. Or else you are gone. Meanwhile, she was attacking him and accusing him of not loving his country, of being a terrorist by association (when in fact, she is closely tied with the AIP who are closely tied with white supremacist groups throughout the country– as if being a secessionist weren’t bad enough).
Where were the good Republicans then?
The death threats against him escalated and the Secret Service asked Palin to tone it down, but she REFUSED. And we were treated to the smug look of thuggery on her supporters faces, who loved the fact that they could frighten Obama’s children and wife, whose lives were also threatened. How sick is that? Is that the America you know and love? To coin a phrase:-)
Remember when Bush was “appointed” by a conservative SCOTUS? Gee. That seems like a violation of the constitution. No? But were the death threats against Bush even close to those against Obama? No. This is a fact.
And How do you justify Sarah Palin and her vitriolic rallies of KKK hate in 2008? How does any Republican with any sense do that? My grandparents were Eisenhower Republicans and I can tell you that they would be ASHAMED of the Republican party today. There is NO way they would vote R now.
The Republican party has shamed itself on policy, shamed itself on leadership, shamed itself on the constitution, shamed itself on its patriotism, shamed itself internationally by violating UN and pre-emptively declaring war on sovereign nation based on a LIE, and worst of all, shamed its own supposed values. They are not the party of fiscal conservatives; they are tax cuts for the rich and spend and borrow. That is not good leadership. It’s not responsible. It’s not ethical. And it sure as heck isn’t “small government”.
Now, the examples of right wing violence are too vast even from the last year to contain here. Literally, it is an epidemic and this is a FACT. You may not like it, but denial is not healthy and it won’t help your party or this country. People like YOU have to take a stand and demand that your party get its act together, otherwise this country will not have a Republican party and that is BAD for democracy.
You can say that these examples are just a few extremists in your party, but then why don’t any of your leaders speak out and follow it up with action? Where is the leadership? Instead, they purposefully and willfully incite violence against elected officials and citizens. As an example, I did not appreciate Palin suggesting that her rabid followers (who still believe the Pledge of Allegiance was written by the founders, as she does) stop cars with Obama stickers and confront them. Especially after that right wing nut job bashed into a car with an Obama sticker in Tenn (right after Palin’s visit), pushed it up onto the sidewalk, and the vehicle had a child in it.
That is NOT ok. Where are you in standing up against that kind of violence? I have been personally threatened by Palin fans. I know people who have been threatened by them, to the extent of losing their JOBS after rabid Palin fans threatened to bring a gun to their place of employment (they happened to work at a school). Is this OK? Is this how you conduct yourself? I think NOT. You are clearly above all of that. But then, how can you align yourself with this consistent behavior? These examples are not one-offs. They are not the exception to the rule. This is what the Republican party DOES when it loses, at least for the last 14 years or so.
You are clearly NOT a crazy person, indeed you seem very kind and genuine — but that is why it falls to you and the few remaining Republicans to wake up and take your party back before it becomes a regional party of racial hatred and false ideas about this being a Christian nation.
This country was founded on freedom of and from religion for a very good reason. Politics and religion do not mix, and no one who has a spiritual relationship with their God could dispute that. Spirituality and power do NOT mix. We do not give our elected officials divine power from God, and yet, many Republicans claim this. Sanford claims he can do whatever he wants because he is chosen one from God, Palin thinks God mantled her for Presidency, Bush thought he was fighting Gog in Iraq.
And what comes with that sort of entitled thinking? A refusal to be a part of the solution if you lost an election, a refusal to show respect for your President, a willingness to put this country in danger because you refuse to appoint TSA chief along with 30 other positions — the list goes on and on.
The death threats issued predominantly to Democratic leaders from the right do not help Republicans build their narrative that “both sides do it” (notice they leave out the “equally” here– an important caveat), and more importantly, it shows that the right resorts to violence in order to achieve political goals.
Here’s a gander at just the tip of the iceberg:
Oath Keepers Far right Wing “Patriots”
And yes, they’re closely enmeshed with the Tea Party movement now:
Oath Keepers collaborates regularly with like-minded citizens groups; last Fourth of July, Rhodes dispatched speakers to administer the oath at more than 30 Tea Party rallies across America. At last fall’s 9/12 march on Washington, he led a contingent of Oath Keepers from the Capitol steps down to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Afterward, Oath Keepers cohosted a banquet with the hawkish Gathering of Eagles. This February, a member of the group organized a Florida Freedom Rally featuring Joe the Plumber and conservative singer Lloyd Marcus. (Sample lyrics: Mr. President! Your stimulus is sure to bust / it’s just a socialistic scheme / The only thing it will do / is kill the American Dream.)
teabagger ripping up Rosa Parks sign
Joe Wilson’s southern show of disrespect for his president
“But Wilson’s shocking disrespect for the office of the president — no Democrat ever shouted “liar” at W. when he was hawking a fake case for war in Iraq — convinced me: Some people just can’t believe a black man is president and will never accept it.”
What needs to happen, Jana, is that people like YOU need to stand up for your party and its values. You need to say NO more. You need to inform yourself about what is going on, and then get a group of like minded citizens together to demand civility and respect from your leaders on TV, radio, and in DC. You need to hold them accountable for the things they have misrepresented to you, so that you can get GOOD leaders in office.
Instead of talking about taking back this country, you need to talk about taking back your party.
This country is only as good as both parties. Right now, we are in dire straights. I urge you to take all of the obvious goodness in your heart and take positive action toward restoration of your party. I wish you all the best with it.
With all due respect and a great appreciation for your willingness to talk about the issues….