The Democratic Party is trying to blame Jared Loughner’s crime on Sarah Palin. So, if Governor Palin or any other Republican were to be raped, or shot, or come to any other harm, would it be the liberals’ fault? By their logic, the case would be more than air-tight. One can reasonably ask: did any Republican ever suggest that it would be a good thing if Representative Giffords were shot or raped? Of course not. Only liberals sink that low.
I haven’t had much time to watch cable news over the weekend, but from what I’ve seen, I’ve been disappointed in the performance of Republicans. Conservatives need to hit back aggressively against the Democrats’ ridiculous attacks, not try to be high-minded.
PAUL adds: Some Democrats are relying on a map by Sarah Palin’s PAC indicating that it was targeting certain congressional districts in the 2010 election. The map identifies the districts as targets by placing crosshairs on them. Palin also stated that Republicans should not retreat, but rather reload.
There is no evidence that this speech had anything to do with the shooting of Rep. Giffords. Nor, obviously, did it advocate or suggest that she be the target of violence. The crosshairs appear on geographic locations, not the faces of individuals. And the word “reload” is often used in non-gun contexts (e.g., the Duke basketball program doesn’t rebuild, it reloads).
Nonetheless, it would be nice if, going forward, politicians and the PACs refrained from using crosshairs in ads.
JOHN adds: Well, perhaps. But as many commentators have pointed out, the target motif has been common in both parties’ communications. Thus, we have this graphic from the Democratic Leadership Committee, illustrating its “targeting strategy” for attacking those Republican Congressmen who are “behind enemy lines”:
As well as this graphic from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, where each of the bulls-eyes represents a “targeted Republican”:
My own view is that it is pointless to try to wipe out military metaphors, which abound in our language, political and otherwise. Military metaphors, in my opinion, have nothing to do with mass murder by lunatics, whether those metaphors crop up among Republicans or Democrats.
PAUL adds: I’m not sure anyone is going to have to try wipe out shooting metaphors from our politics. Using them gains nothing and risks the kind of criticism Palin is getting now. Thus, politicians with serious ambitions would be foolish to employ shooting metaphors where other rhetorical devices will do.
I won’t miss them. They may be edgy, but it’s an edginess we can do without. In this country politics is not warfare.
SCOTT adds: Oh, by the way, those aren’t crosshairs on Palin’s map.
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