Monday, June 01, 2009

Shooting of US abortion doctor shocks Obama.

Obama went to Notre Dame recently and asked that both sides try to avoid extremist positions in the abortion debate. He has got his answer from the rabid right wing:

Violence returned to the abortion debate in the United States yesterday when a doctor who has long been the target of right-to-life activists was gunned down and killed in a church in Kansas where he was an usher.

Lawyers for George Tiller, a 67-year-old doctor who has long been one of only a few in the US willing to perform so-called "late-term" abortions, confirmed that he had been killed in the attack, which happened as he walked into the Reformation Lutheran Church in his home town of Wichita.

Last night Obama was said to be "shocked and outraged" over the killing.

When I listen to some of the extremist positions the right occupy, and watch the way that their anger is being fueled by the Limbaugh's and O'Reilly's and Malkins of this world, and listen to them being told by Glenn Beck that they have to "do something" before their country is taken from them, my only surprise is that this kind of thing doesn't happen more often.

There were clips of Sarah Palin's rally audience during the campaign which I found terrifying. Here were a group of people, who were clearly not the brightest of the bunch, being told that the man the Democrats were putting up for president was "palling around with terrorists."

Cries of "Kill him!" and "Terrorist!" became almost routine at these events.

And I know we will now hear from the right that this was done by one unhinged individual and that everyone has to take responsibility for their own actions. But that's sort of my point.

People also have to take responsibility for creating the feeling that the democratic process has resulted in America being taken from it's people and from this constant encouragement that the people need to "do something". Much as I find it gross to watch Glenn Beck constantly weep for what he imagines has been done to US, there are people out there who take that shit seriously.

In this clip Beck talks of the people forming militias because income tax has had to be raised to between 80-95% just to pay for what has already been spent.

One guest warns:
"This is going to be violent, people can't afford it anymore. Look, cities are going to look like Dodge city, they are going to be uncontrollable, you're going to have gangs in control, motorcycle marauders, you're not going to have enough police, just like Mexico, to control the situation."
There has been a strand of thought amongst the right which states that the government is "disenfranchising people over and over again" and, as Beck states here, that some people "know the constitution" but feel that "the government has betrayed the constitution and so they will see themselves as people who are standing up for the constitution".

Beck's guest, when asked how one diffuses such a situation, replies:
"I don't think you'd want to diffuse it Glenn, we've had a forty minute programme so far and all of the problems we have talked about in one way or another are the result of the American government either overspending or overreaching".

"Glenn, the second amendment is about, at base, not about hunting or about a militia, but about resisting tyranny. The founders were very concerned about allowing individual citizens weaponry to defend themselves as a last resort against a tyrannical government. I don't think the founders ever considered that there would be a tyranny of incompetence, but I think that what we are facing. And, ultimately, that the right of an American."
Glenn goes on to state that the government, "are betraying the principles of our founders every day that they are in office."

So, the notion that the people will have to take matters into their own hands is one which people like Beck have been pushing for months now.

And now, one lone nutter has done exactly that. And that is down to that lone nutter alone. But there has been an atmosphere created which has made an action like this seem almost inevitable.


Via Balloon-juice, here are just some of the comments on Freeper:
2. Tiller has committed outrage after outrage and not only gotten away with it, he has made a fortune! Sooner or later this had to happen.

6. What goes around comes around...

8. One less nazi as far as I am concerned.

10. Hope the guy gets away.

20. Obama is going to take advantage of this murder to sieze even more control over our society.

I would not even put it past them to commit this murder themselves, as an excuse to sieze power. Reichstag Fire, and all that...

That's an appalling amount of anger and paranoia. And some people, rather than attempting to calm it down, have been fueling it to gain nothing more honorable than ratings.


Another right winger comments. This one via Crooks and Liars:
You have to wonder if the reason why we have a legal system is in order to steal the oxygen from moral vigilantism. You have to wonder if the legal system breaks down whether vigilantism, when all other options fail, becomes a moral imperative.
Again, the notion that vigilantism has become "a moral imperative", the argument that the people have to take the law into their own hands. It's an argument that certain right wing commentators have been pushing for months now.

Click title for full article.

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