It was no surprise that pundits would try to score political points from the Arizona tragedy. Calls to curtail the legitimate language of dissent were broadcast before any information on the shooter surfaced. From Townhall.com Carol Platt Liebau writes Left-Wing Blame Game Won’t Work With Arizona Tragedy.
almost 16 years after Oklahoma City – and after seeing similar gamesmanship in the wake of crimes like the Holocaust Museum shooting — Americans have become skeptical of cynical efforts to stigmatize entire ideologies based only on the actions of lone, clearly deranged criminals. That’s especially true where, as here, there’s no real evidence that the suspect actually subscribed to any coherent political creed.
Finally, the political climate has changed, drastically, since 1995. Many (if not most) Americans have just endured two years in which a liberal majority has governed against their own expressed wishes. By doing so, liberal politicians – from the President on down — have aroused widespread, deep-seated opposition among the electorate to an unprecedented degree. In such a climate, people will find it easier to distinguish between insane criminals and law-abiding dissenters from government policy, because they are likelier than ever to be dissenters themselves.
Given all of this, those on the left would be best advised to avoid cheap blame-seeking for political gain. If they persist in the dishonorable effort to discredit the beliefs of millions of Americans based on the criminal actions of just one, ironically, they may hurt their own cause most
In The charlatans’ response to the Tucson tragedy, The Washington Post, 1/11/11 George Will adds (Excerpt):
This McCarthyism of the left – devoid of intellectual content, unsupported by data – is a mental tic, not an idea but a tactic for avoiding engagement with ideas. It expresses limitless contempt for the American people, who have reciprocated by reducing liberalism to its current characteristics of electoral weakness and bad sociology.
Besides being so factually incorrect, it is a shameless and morally bankrupt act to politicize such a tragic event, and use it to squash legitimate political dissent. The vast majority of the American people know better.