Daily Archives: January 9, 2011

The Year Begins in Tragedy

I never imagined that my first blog entry of 2011 would be about something as tragic as this…

I’m wrestling with a lot of thoughts and emotions in the wake of the horrific shooting in Tuscon, Arizona that wounded Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and killed six others, including a federal judge and a 9-year old girl.

The first thing that comes to mind is this:

Let us all pray for the victims: the slain, the injured, and those who survived but will always have that awful scene seared into their memories. Let’s hope that Rep. Giffords recovers from her terrible wound and returns to Congress to pursue the work that her would-be assassin tried to destroy.

The next thing that occurs to me is this:

The killer shot 19 out of the three-dozen people at that gathering – killing six of them. How in the world do we, in a civilized society, allow people to legally arm themselves with that kind of automatic firepower? Could this coward have slaughtered that many people in so short of time with a knife, a hunting rife, a shotgun, or a six-shot revolver? Not a chance.

Sorry NRA supporters and Second Amendment apologists, but anyone who thinks they need that kind of firepower for self-defense must imagine that their enemies are coming at them with even bigger firepower. (Like their own government?) They are clearly fearful and paranoid. And frightened paranoids are the last people we want to have armed with automatic weapons.

I also think about this:

Sheriff Clarence W. Dupnik is a hero. At the press conference on Saturday, he called it like it is – whether it was politically correct or not. He said over and over that the vitriolic anti-government political rhetoric spewed by some voices in the media contributed to this tragedy. Sheriff Dupnik reminded us of the consequences of that kind of speech. He’ll be savaged by the right wing in the coming days – but he spoke the truth.

The right wing is selling hate and intolerance – and this is the inevitable result.

What an awful way to start the year.

I’d rather have written about the wild results in the first round of the NFL playoffs.

Let’s hope this makes Beck and Limbaugh and Sarah “cross-hairs” Palin think before they rant. But, then again, they aren’t really paid to think.

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