Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sarah Palin, Stop Whining! You Are Not a Victim!

Sarah Palin: "America's Enduring Strength" from Sarah Palin on Vimeo.

After the Tucson shooting, there has been a public debate about the nature of today's political discourse. As a part of the debate, many commentators have criticized former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) for using a controversial map putting designated Congressional districts, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords's district, in gun cross hairs.

In addition, Palin has been criticized for using gun related political rhetoric like "Don't retreat, reload." Other Republican politicians have been condemned for advocating "Second Amendment remedies" and for urging people to be "armed and dangerous." In response to this controversy, Palin issued the above video recorded statement.

Sarah Palin's lame remarks miss the point. No mainstream critics have accused Palin of inspiring Jared Loughner to shoot and kill innocent people.

However, there is a rational reason for discussing the Tucson tragedy and over heated political rhetoric together. Palin's map put Rep. Giffords in gun cross hairs. On Saturday, Loughner put Giffords in his cross hairs and shot her in the head at point blank range. During the health care debate, Giffords's offices received threats and was vandalized. Those facts together with rhetoric about "Second Amendment remedies" and being "armed and dangerous" made the connection inevitable. Instead of offering poor excuses for such violent rhetoric, Palin and the nation should reflect on the potential impact of such venomous discourse.

For Palin to equate her ordeal with historic antisemitism (blood libel) is disgraceful. The recent criticism of Palin is not libelous. Such criticism is rooted in undeniable facts.

Sarah Palin, stop whining. You are not a victim. The six murdered people, including a little girl, are victims, not you. Giffords is in the hospital recovering from gun wounds to the head. Giffords and the other injured people are the victims, not you. 

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