Rabbis Blame the Right for Tucson 'On Faith,' Not Facts
Although it's been one week since the horrific Tucson shooting that killed six and wounded 13 (including liberal Rep. Gabrielle Giffords) and days since the world has discovered that conservative politicians and talkers cannot be factually blamed, The Washington Post's Saturday "On Faith" page is recycling the attacks. A story by Daniel Burke of the Religion News Service doesn't let reality penetrate the brains of the religious left:
Loughner's political views were unclear. In a video posted on YouTube, the 22-year-old rails against what he sees as government conspiracies to brainwash Americans through grammar, and he rants about currency. Loughner's former philosophy professor described him to Slate magazine as "someone whose brains were scrambled." Although the suspect's intentions are unknown [?], Americans cannot ignore the country's increasing culture of violence, particularly in political discourse, said Rabbi David Saperstein, whose Reform Action Center of Reform Judaism has worked with Giffords.
"Dehumanizing language and images of violence are regularly used to express differences of opinion on political issues," Saperstein said. "Such language is too often heard by others, including those who may be mentally ill or ideologically extreme, to justify the actual use of violence."
Four out of five Americans share Saperstein's concerns, according to a November PRRI/Religion News poll, saying that a lack of respectful political discourse is a serious problem.
Some Christian leaders also said the shooting shows the need for stricter gun-control laws.
"Death and suffering from guns - legally and illegally attained - is virtually a daily occurrence in the cities and villages of this country," said the Rev. Michael Kinnamon, general secretary of the National Council of Churches.
"Surely the Second Amendment was not intended to provide indiscriminate access to guns without more effective vetting and control," he said.
Next to that story were a few excerpts from the online On Faith site on the Tucson tragedy, including this beauty from leftist rabbi Sharon Brous:
Saturday was, simply, the brutal and inevitable intersection of fear, hatred and guns. There are those who, predictably, were quick to classify the violence as the work of a solo individual who held no coherent political ideology. This dangerous and misleading analysis reflects a willful blindness to the context and implications of the shootings
Who is showing "willful blindness" on this matter? The entire Brous piece is a jaw-dropper. This came right before:
VITRIOL + GUNS = DISASTER
For two years we have watched as political leaders and members of the press have made incendiary rhetoric not the exception but the rule in Washington and around the country. A culture of fear and hatred has created a foundation for the most contentious political atmosphere in generations. Witness comparisons between Obama and Hitler, calls to "Impeach the Muslim Marxist," ginned up stories about Mexican immigrant beheadings, ceaseless attacks on Muslims ("No Temple for the God of Terror") and gays ("Homosex is a threat to national security"). Those who have been in politics from the heyday of the Civil Rights Movement and the most contentious years of the Vietnam War have warned us that they have never seen an America as dangerously divided as our country is today.
Combine this political atmosphere with the reckless and reprehensible proliferation of gun images, gun terminology and guns. And, of course, the absurd and illogical disconnect between gun access and gun violence. And then we wonder why tragic incidents such as Tucson occur.