Giffords shooting: Arizona sows the wind and reaps the whirlwind

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said it best:

“The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous, and unfortunately Arizona has become sort of the capital,” Dupnik said Saturday January 8th at a press conference about the shooting of Congresswoman Gabriell Giffords and 18 others.

“We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry,” Dupnik added. “The fiery rhetoric that has taken hold in politics may be free speech, but it’s not without consequences.”

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer was slated to give her “State of the State” speech to the legislature on Monday January 10th.

I doubt she will really give a true picture of the state of the state of Arizona or the nation right now.

From top to bottom we have become a sick society filled with hatred and armed crazies.

In our political process the opposition is demonized to the point where media commentators such as Glenn Beck can suggest liberals ought to be killed.

In our political process is it ok for Sarah Palin to put a target on Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords?

In our political process is it tolerated when people break their windows of Congressional offices and carry guns into political events as happened to Giffords in the last few months?

In Arizona demonizing undocumented Mexicans for political power gains was not only accepted…it worked to elect a lot of people to office who exploit hatred and fear for power.

Glock 9 mm Model 19 with clips

In Arizona certain interests fought hard to allow anyone to carry a concealed weapon, and to be able to buy semi-automatic weapons with extended ammo clips. What conceivable recreational use does that kind of weapon really have? They are solely for killing people.

We have 6 dead in Arizona because gun rights are more important than human life.

And then we have the suspected shooter Jared Loughner. Obviously from his internet postings a mentally disturbed individual.

Sheriff Dupnik made the point that where a climate of hatred and intolerance is created, that opens the door for armed nut cases to act out their craziness.

And this isn’t the first time a gunman has tried to kill those who serve our country and kill those who have political views opposed to theirs. They try to instill fear in anyone who is willing to step up to the plate for fairness and social justice.

America is known for killing its leaders….and are we any different than Pakistan right now?

The hate filled rhetoric being used to justify one side’s political agenda has to stop RIGHT NOW !

The media who profit from allowing the Glenn Becks and others who spew hostility must stop exploiting promotion of hatred for their bottom line.

That includes the many websites who allow bloggers and commentors to spew their venom to incite insurrection and violence.

Those who profit from selling guns to crazy people must be stopped.

And we need to really do something effective about our mental health care system beyond cutting budgets because some folks don’t want to pay taxes.

* * * *

Someone tore a giant hole in the fabric of a community of people that are dedicated to public service.

The message from the armed crazies is to try and frighten anyone away from public service if they don’t follow the orthodoxy of one particular political perspective or another.

It does cause one to pause before stepping into the arena of public service and activism knowing that our culture repeatedly spawns assassins bent on killing those who stand up for justice.

But for everyone who falls in the line of fire, a hundred others will step into the gap to keep the effort going for truth and justice.

They sow the wind and reap the whirlwind Hosea 8:7

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About Hugh Holub

Attorney and writer.
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