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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/13/11

Good Luck Talking Down Shrill, "Blood Libel' Victims Armed to the Teeth

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What a fierce fusillade of national verbiage erupts after every creepy assassin strikes.  Unless well-intentioned blather confronts the following, nothing will change: 1) the ceaseless, badly-monitored salvo of gun sales, 2) flocks of armed, unhinged extremists at large, and 3) security to insulate officials from being sitting ducks. 


Satirists might propose electing only ex-soldiers or police skilled in self-defense, modern day replicas of 19th C. politicians who went off to work armed and ready for "vigorous exchanges."  Maybe such action shootouts could be the next survivor's show TV hit.


Certainly, the worst nonsense so far bubbled up from Sarah Palin's cauldron, setting new over-the-top standards far beyond irony.  The Shriller from Wasilla dared scold others "who embrace evil and call it good . . . who mock [our] greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries of imagined insults."  Doesn't that shrill last phrase, "imagined insults," capture Palin in a verbal crosshair? 


Never apologize, whether bad judgment or bad timing -- never retreat, no surrender, just more inflated invective and clinical narcissism.  With the phrase, "blood libel," her set-speech on murder in Arizona ends up making HER the victim.   Clearly, here she outdoes even her model of ignorance, blind to specific historic context, whacko beyond words considering Rep. Giffords is Jewish.  "Blood libel" refers strictly to slandering minorities, especially Jews, accusing them of murdering Christian children in a ritual blood sacrifice.   "Death panels," begone.  If the coarseness of "blood libel" doesn't torpedo Palin's future, I can imagine what will.  


Good news: any such demise signals the first positive from this horror.


Words don't matter, only "blood libel"?


As Dylan Ratigan on msnbc remarked, how is it okay for Palin to claim words don't matter and individual actors are solely responsible for their crimes while going apoplectic when others opine violent rhetoric fuels a context for violence.  Or that her outrage might push the "disturbed" to obey her "don't retreat, reload"?  Crosshairs, anyone?   


Certainly any such talk won't make us safer, nor will good intentions or happy hopes from politicians, nor minute retelling of the perpetrator's miserable life.  For once I prefer slow closure and the memory of slaughtered innocent to drive enough Americans, even on the right, to rise up and say: "Stop.  No more repeating hand pistols, the perfect match for mass murder."  Imagine, even insisting there be help for roving unmonitored and/or unmedicated lost souls.

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For a decade, Robert S. Becker's rebel-rousing essays on politics and culture analyze overall trends, messaging and frameworks, now featured author at OpEdNews, Nation of Change and RSN. He appears regularly at Dissident Voice, with credits (more...)

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