The Rhetoric of Rhetoric is Misplaced (1/13/11)
You may have noticed some commentators, columnists and newspapers claiming that the tragic shootings in Arizona happened because of the nasty rhetoric during the past political season, most of which they seem to attribute to Republicans and right wing talk show hosts. I find that opportunism after this tragedy to be misleading and distasteful.
All evidence so far says this shooter had an infatuation with Representative Gabrielle Giffords since he first met her in 2007. He could have had that same infatuation for an actress, an athlete, or a former girlfriend. For reasons we don't know, he chose to try to end the life of the object of his infatuation and while he was at it he shot 19 other people. Some of them were Democrats, some Republicans and some were neither. He didn't care.
Am I disgusted with all the negativity in politics today? Oh, you bet. And maybe this is a catalyst to force us back to a more civilized dialog. But there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever that this evil was stirred to the surface by political rhetoric.
Note to the media: If you think we should return to a time when debate was more elegant and polite than the name calling that passes for campaigning today, fine make your case. But don't use a tragedy like we just had and twist the facts to support an unrelated agenda.
I'm Bill Lamb…and that's my Point of View.