By all accounts, Madge Oberholtzer committed suicide. She used her own hand to end her own life. D.C. Stephenson was the head of the KKK in Indiana in the twenties. Madge was an advocate for literacy. D.C. kidnapped her, forced her full of liquor, raped her and tortured her - she was so covered in bite marks that one witness said she appeared to have been chewed by a cannibal. Later, after she was freed, she never did recover emotionally from her injuries and ended her own life. Nonetheless, there is a very famous case supporting the conviction of D. C. Stephenson for murdering her - just as surely as if he had put a gun to her head and pulled the trigger. He didn't, but he killed her all the same.
I realize that case is way more extreme than the recent events in Arizona. Palin didn't literally bite anybody. Beck hasn't been kidnapping or raping anyone. Nonetheless, they have been really, really, really mean and snarky. Blood libel? Really? Come on, Sarah, that is really reaching. I know you didn't kidnap anybody and you didn't personally incite that kid to start shooting, but, you did incite shooting. Rush absolutely incited shooting. Rush's outright contempt for anyone who disagrees with him is chilling. To call his condemnation of his enemies cruel is a compliment and an understatement. Hell, Dick Cheney shot his friends in the face and accepted apologies from the friend for being in the way.
All of this discussion only highlights that there is a mood in this country and it isn't good. Those I hear on the right have one line and only one line and it is regurgitated perpetually over and over until I literally want to bash in their heads just to prove there are no brains in there. I get angry. It's not just that the statements are stupid and irrational. It's also that I fail to see all these people thinking for themselves. Any rational mind must conclude that all this snarky mean references to shooting and death lead troubled irrational people to do irrational things. It's frustrating. And I'm sure they feel exactly the same way about me.
The only difference between me and those with whom I disagree is that I walk away. I'm always the one to walk away. I'm not the only one to get angry, either. The vehemence is mutual. I unfriend you when I get so pissed off at your stupidity that I can't see my own reason anymore. Before I do that, I really do try to see some commonality, so basis of humanity and compassion. I just see anger and irrationality. So, I walk.
But I don't use guns. I don't use gun analogies. I don't advocate using guns. I don't hunt. I don't kill. I don't even spank my dog. I try, try, try to surround myself with beauty, compassion and kindness. I try to pass on laughter. But I look around at what's on TV and what's on radio and what's going around is a lot of immature, selfish, self-centered stupidity where the right BLAMES the left and the left BLAMES the right and the stupid BLAMES the smart and the smart shake their heads, crack a joke and go on trying to earn a decent living and live a decent life against all odds. And they really are odd.
The sad part is that I really do know the answer to this problem: Be nice. Hold hands when you cross the street. Share. Look out for one another. Get a good education. Work at something you love. Power and control are illusions. Love is real.