As I write this, Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), the House Majority Whip, is in critical condition in a northern Virginia hospital, the result of a shooting by a fellow who hated Republicans. All that is true, and it is particularly ironic that the shooting took place at a practice for a baseball game where congressmen of both parties compete to raise money for a charitable cause.
The one time that there is actually communication between the parties, and here comes a politically-motivated guy along to take to heart the words and the symbolism that the left has allowed to get to a boil, though a bit to late for Rep. Scalise.
I have written on several occasions of the need for moderate Muslims who don't believe in sharia law, don't believe their faith mandates the stoning of gay people and the subjugation of women, to step forward. I have asked, as have many, for that community to be heard and heard loud, that such actions are contemptible perversions of their belief.
Now, the shooting here has nothing to do with Islam. But it is the analogy that makes sense, as the shooter here was the identical "lone wolf terrorist", motivated by fanaticism and radicalized by people who should have been punished a while ago.
So let us credit those people and ask that they step forward and take their share of the blame for this shooting.
Madonna, step forward. You thought that opposition to the legal election of Donald Trump was justification to discuss burning down the White House in a speech right after the election. You know that some people listen to you, though perhaps a lot fewer than when you were relevant. You advocated violence, and people heard you. Maybe the shooter was one of them. Step forward and take your share of the blame, Madonna.
Kathy Griffin, step forward. You, too, thought you could revive a fading career by holding up a bloody head of the new president. That was advocacy, Miss Griffin, whatever you call it. Nut jobs watch and listen to you and take action that would make you happy. Maybe the shooter was one of those people. You certainly made it clear that violence was OK, and then when you were taken to task for it you cried that people were silencing "comedians." Step forward and take your share of the blame, Miss Griffin.
Black Lives Matter, you all step forward too. Sure, march down the streets chanting to kill policemen, the left will not say a word. They won't upbraid you for that, they won't decry the use of violent threats. Maybe the shooter figured that if it was OK to call out in public for the murder of policemen and not get stopped, well, what's the difference if he were to go shoot at congressmen. Seems like the silence of the rest of the left meant that a Bernie Sanders supporter like the shooter could do what he wanted. Step forward and take your share of the blame, Black Lives Matter.
There's a lot of stepping forward that needs to get done, but it might be time for a lot of stepping back too. Stepping back from the nastiness of the public discussions of issues and learning the civility of debate. Stepping back from turning political disagreement into hate. Stepping back from the stupid symbolism, the pushing of the envelope, the things that inspire lone wolves like the shooter.
It is time for the leaders of the left to back off and start being civil and encouraging civility in all aspects of life, to stop vilifying those of different opinions. It would be time for the leaders of the left to do all that.
If only the left had any leadership in the first place.
Copyright 2017 by Robert Sutton
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