The View's Whoopi Goldberg Compares Today's Politics to Talk That Got People 'Lynched' in the '60s

The View's Whoopi Goldberg on Tuesday compared today's political environment to that of when she was a child, talk that led to people get "lynched." Discussing Last week's Arizona shooting, she warned, "When I was growing up, people talking and saying things, whipping folks up, caused a lot of people to get lynched."

Continuing this theme, she added, "Now, had those people not done all that, would it have happened any way? It may have. I don't know. But I do know that sometimes we, as a society, have to sort of be aware of what we are doing."

(Of course, Goldberg's historical analogy falls apart when you consider the fact that she was born in 1955 and grew up in the '60s, a time when lynchings were at a historical low.) The normally conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck even inquired if Sarah Palin's career might be over as a result of the cross hairs ad her political action committee released in 2010.

Talking to former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, a possible 2012 candidate, she seriously wondered "Do you think, given the perception out there based on the cross hairs format that she put out, do you think that her political career might be over?"

Co-host Barbara Walters speculated as to whether, because of the cross hairs graphic, Palin deserves to be "a target of this antagonism."

Continuing to search for responsibility beyond Jared Loughner, the shooter, Walters theorized to Pawlenty: "Do you feel this is just a crazy person or do you feel that politics to some degree and the media has to be blamed?"

A transcript of the January 11 segment, which aired 11:10am EST, follows:


WHOOPI GOLDBERG: When I was growing up, people talking and saying things, whipping folks up, caused a lot of people to get lynched. Now, had those people not done all that, would it have happened any way? It may have. I don't know. But I do know that sometimes we, as a society, have to sort of be aware of what we are doing.

11:25

BARBARA WALTERS: But, let's talk about what happened. Do you- Do you feel this is just a crazy person or do you feel that politics to some degree and the media has to be blamed?

TIM PAWLENTY: Well, one of the things I talk about in the book is how you respond to crisis. And one of the first steps is make sure, Barbara, you got good information and you make good decisions based on good information. As we sit here on The View, today, there is no evidence that this deranged individual acted because of some particular set of comments or experience with the media or politician. That being said, our country, all of us, each of us, individually and collectively, can benefit from a more thoughtful and civil debate.

ELISABETH HASSELBECK: Sure. Absolutely.

WALTERS: Do you think that Sarah Palin, because of the ad that she took or because of some things that she has talked about, do you think she deserves to, herself, be a target of this antagonism?

PAWLENTY: As to Governor Palin?

WALTERS: Yes.

PAWLENTY: I think she's a remarkable leader. I think she served her state well and she's an important voice for my party. But there is no evidence to indicate that she or anyone else was the cause of this. We have a mentally unstable, deranged individual. We know that sometimes they do senseless and irrational things. And to condemn or to judge based on those facts as we know them today is unfair.

HASSELBECK: Do you think, given the perception out there based on the cross hairs format that she put out, do you think that her political career might be over?

PAWLENTY: No. No, I don't. Again, you can debate tactics and style and all of that. But, again, there is no evidence to suggest she or anyone else is at fault other than you have somebody who had these mental health challenges.

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org