America’s Gun Culture This Year

newtown shootin

Walter Brasch: There were 12 mass murders so far this year. There will be 33 more deaths from gunshot wounds today. There will be 33 more tomorrow. And the day after that and the day after that.

Idiotas: Enduring Fools

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Rudy Acuña: Arizona Governor Jan Brewer wagging her finger at President Obama recently caught my attention; it is a gesture that betrayed her IQ and upbringing. It was a punk act, and she did it because she knew she could get away with it.

Democrats and Gun Control

kids shooting

Carl Matthes: Since the Democrats aren’t fighting for gun controls, I suggest they become head cheerleaders for gun proliferation. Outflank the Republicans and make the case that America needs more than the 350,000,000 guns the FBI estimates is currently available.

Why This Is Our Time

obama state of the union speech

Anthony Samad: On education, immigration, the green environment, and of course, jobs, President Obama helped even Republicans understand that the only way the country was going to move ahead was, together.

Guns, Polls, and Too Many Dead Americans

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Steve Hochstadt: New polls about high capacity magazines show that nearly two-thirds favor banning their sale. A minority of Americans, consistently about a third, favor banning the sale of all handguns, except to police.

America’s History of Crazy Political Assassins Didn’t Begin with Loughner

Arthur Bremer

James W. Clarke: For Hinckley, Bremer, and—until the evidence is in, I’m willing to bet—Jared Loughner, their victims become trophies in a suicidal quest for lead-story notoriety.

Anti-Immigrant Leader Spearheading Effort to Oust Sheriff Dupnik

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik

Andrea Nill: The focus of Dupnik’s controversial statements was not immigration. However, it is no coincidence that Americans Against Immigration Amnesty is going after one of the most vocal critics of Arizona’s immigration law.

State of the Union Address 2011 – Full Video and Transcript

You can watch President Obama’s State of the Union Address, in its entirety and read the full transcript here. The president began by introducing the Speaker of the House, John Boehner. He then went on to talk about the tragedy in Tucson, pointing out that Representative Gabrielle Giffords’ seat was empty. The hour long video offers insight into what we’re to expect in the coming year.

Who Are the Knuckleheads?

Paul Winchell and Jerry Mahoney and Knucklehead Smiff

Steve Hochstadt: It disturbs some conservatives no end that Americans who teach in colleges and universities tend not to share their ideas about evolution, global warming, and history. So dismiss the source: just look at where we work, and that should tell you all you need to know.

Sticks and Stones

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Rev. Jim Nelson: It is about power, power over. All slurs are meant to demean and to wound, to rob a person or a people of their humanity. Whether it is calling those on the left socialists or those on the right fascists, name-calling divides and wounds; it provokes rather than promotes.

The Politics of Hate—and Hate Speech

gunman roulette

Walter Brasch: While most Tea Partiers are White, middle-aged or senior citizens who are angry but not violent, whenever there is violence, whenever there is racism, discrimination, or homophobia, there are Tea Party sympathizers present.

Of Course the Assassination Attempt Was Political

arizona shooting

David Greenberg: Much has been made in the last few days of the power of symbols (bull’s-eyes, cross-hairs), martial rhetoric, the hyperbole of words like tyranny. But the most important symbols in all of this are politicians themselves.

When Radicalized Political Rhetoric and Anti-Intellectualism Meet

jared loughner

Anthony Samad: Free speech is one thing. Symbolic speech is covered by the First Amendment, but don’t say your coded messages don’t have anything to do with violent consequences.

The Consequences of Words

jared loughner

Tom Degan: The extremism of 1963 was pretty much isolated to a few southern cities. Forty-eight years later it’s gone national. What happened in Arizona over the weekend is only the beginning.

Arizona Goddamn

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik

David Love: The recent assassination attempt on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona, which left 18 wounded and 6 dead, is a reminder that all is not well in that state. With anti-immigrant legislation, a ban on Chicano studies in the public schools and lax gun laws, Arizona is ground zero for hate and intolerance in America.

The Political Fight after the Arizona Gunfight: Right Target, Wrong Trigger

tucson shooting

Gil Troy: Yes, we need more civility in our politics. But no, we should not use one crazy gunman’s random fixations and horrific violence to trigger the kind of reform modern political culture needs.

The Unintended Consequences of the Loughner Rampage

Jasmyne Cannick: I can almost guarantee you that it’s going to be next to impossible for the average citizen to meet with their representative. Because if they didn’t have good cause for blatantly avoiding you before—you can betcha bottom tax dollar they do now.

“Truth or Consequence” – How Did You THINK It Was Going to End Up?

tucson shooting

Scott Prosterman: The Tea Party Nation issued a statement, “We didn’t intend for this to result in violence.” Huh? How did they think it was going to end up?

White Power, White Terrorism, White Mainstream

tucson shooting

Jessie Daniels: The white mainstream is already framing this shooting as the act of a crazed, lone gunman, rather than part of a consistent pattern of right-wing violence perpetrated almost exclusively by white men who are responding to a political climate that is increasingly stoked by vitriolic rhetoric.

When Violence Comes From the Right, Media Hear No Evil

Joseph Palermo: Despite the work of media watchdog groups like Media Matters, and groups that track right-wing extremism, like the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League, the corporate media insist on ignoring the influence of the Far Right’s toxic rhetorical drumbeat of hatred and anger in promoting a political context where violence can break out.

Civility and Political Discourse after the Tucson Shooting

obama-giffords

Walter Moss: President Obama has often been criticized for being too ready to compromise or for not displaying enough political passion for just causes. No doubt, he has not always perfectly calibrated the right mix of passion and compromise. But there is also no doubt, at least in my mind, that he is correct in calling for more civility in politics.

At Least Stand By Your Free Speech

Tina Dupuy: Sarah Palin, stand by your free speech. Minutes after the Arizona shooting, Palin’s “Crosshairs” image was scrubbed from her website without an explanation or comment – a cowardly move. If you are going to say outrageous things, then you are going to have to stand by outrageous things

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords Shot

Rep. Giffords and husband Mark April

Tragedy in Tucson Arizona Congressional Representative Gabrielle Giffords has been shot.  She was shot in the head as she was addressing constituents at a Tucson, Arizona stripmall. Congresswoman Giffords was immediately taken to a nearby hospital and is listed in critical condition.  The Arizona representative was attending an event at a local stripmall in Arizona [...]

Obama Losing Liberal Base and Youth

elections

Sherwood Ross: Where President Eisenhower once got a landslide voter response for his campaign slogan of “Peace and Prosperity,” it should surprise no one that President Obama’s failure to deliver either one of those ideals has turned off a nation.

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