Friday, October 22, 2010
Tyranny by Tantrum
So, Arizona Democratic Congressman, Raul Grivalja's office had to be shut down yesterday after a bag of white powder in a Swastika emblazoned envelope was delivered and the substance in the bag proved to be hydroxyacentenalide, which is indeed a toxin which can be used safely in Tylenol, so it is easily obtained, but in amounts as large as were sent to the congressman's office, it can be very dangerous. Whether or not the amount or the actual toxicity of the substance was an imediate danger, the reality was that the Swastika emblazoned package was meant to intimidate...to terroize.
In recent weeks the tempo of threats against "Liberals" running in the upcoming election has increased exponentially. We recently saw Patty Murray supporters in Spokane, Washington threatened by a meat cleaver wielding fellow who thought Liberal politicians were out to "get him"
On Sept.22, in East St. Louis, Il, an Army veteran arrested after a seven-hour standoff was charged Wednesday with threatening to kill President Barack Obama as part of what authorities said was his plan to ignite a war between Muslims and Christians and "start an apocalypse.
On Oct. 15, in Peoria a mentally ill man was sentenced to two years in prison for repeatedly threatening to kill the president.
Also on Oct. 15, in Brattleboro, VT, A 43-year-old Vermont man who threatened to kill the president via his Twitter account and blog is receiving a mental health evaluation before he stands trial.
Sure, most of these folks will be found to be mentally ill and that is the cop out used by the right wing pundits will insist they have nothing to do with this -- this is just crazy people.
Part of the problem is that we actually have seen this happen time after time after time: A mentally unstable person is inspired by hateful right-wing rhetoric to act out violently -- and yet because of that mental state, the matter is dismissed as idiosyncratic, just another "isolated incident." And over the months and years, these "isolated incidents" mount one after another.
But simply ascribing these acts to mental illness is a cop-out. It fails to account for the gross irresponsibility of the people who employed the rhetoric that inspired the violent action in the first place, and their resulting moral culpability.
And now today, we have the video of a frequent guest of the Rodeo Clown, The Reverend Stephen Broden, A South Dallas, Texas Pastor who is the Tea Bag Republican Congressional Candidate advocating a violent overthrow of the government if the Tea Baggers don't get their way in the upcoming November Election.
He said, he would not rule out violent overthrow of the government if elections did not produce a change in leadership.
In a rambling exchange during a TV interview, Broden, a South Dallas pastor, said a violent uprising "is not the first option," but it is "on the table." That drew a quick denunciation from the head of the Dallas County GOP, who called the remarks "inappropriate."
Broden, a first-time candidate, is challenging veteran incumbent Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson in Dallas' heavily Democratic 30th Congressional District. Johnson's campaign declined to comment on Broden.
In the interview, Brad Watson, political reporter for WFAA-TV (Channel 8), asked Broden about a tea party event last year in Fort Worth in which he described the nation's government as tyrannical.
"We have a constitutional remedy," Broden said then. "And the Framers say if that don't work, revolution."
Watson asked if his definition of revolution included violent overthrow of the government. In a prolonged back-and-forth, Broden at first declined to explicitly address insurrection, saying the first way to deal with a repressive government is to "alter it or abolish it."
"If the government is not producing the results or has become destructive to the ends of our liberties, we have a right to get rid of that government and to get rid of it by any means necessary," Broden said, adding the nation was founded on a violent revolt against Britain's King George III.
Watson asked if violence would be an option in 2010, under the current government.
"The option is on the table. I don't think that we should remove anything from the table as it relates to our liberties and our freedoms," Broden said, without elaborating. "However, it is not the first option"
Read more in today's Dallas News here.....