Saturday, June 17, 2017

Don't Politicize Tragedy! (Yes or No?)

In "The Echo Chamber of Extremism" at the Daily Beast, John Avlon writes: 

We’ve been playing a dangerous game in America. The more the rhetoric is ratcheted up, the more we increase the risk of an unhinged soul being darkly inspired to take action.
Picture of a victim of the Alexandria, VA, baseball shooter. 

Farther down in the article, Avlon writes:
"In the wake of a mass shooting—take the 2015 attack on a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado Springs that killed three people and injured nine, for example—we’ve often been told not to politicize the tragedy by conservative groups.
Nonetheless, there were predictable attempts to politicize this attack from conservatives like Newt Gingrich and from the alt-right crowd, casting the shooter as somehow representative of Bernie Sanders or Democrats in an attempt to muddy the record of hate-fueled rhetoric in the past and claim moral equivalence if not moral superiority. Guilt by association is the glue of politics in 2017."
It's not that I really disagree with Avlon--

This was a horrible tragedy and my heart is with Representative Steve Scalise and the others who were hurt in this attack.

BUT Republicans favor policies that keep people without health insurance, take away their health insurance, and, therefore, they are policies that result in many more people, millions of people, with no healthcare. How many people have died and will die due to Republican policies?

BUT Republicans are against laws that may help stem the flow of gun violence. How many people have died and will die due to that Republican opposition?

BUT, over the last 40 years, Republicans have tended to favor war and warlike foreign policies resulting in military incursions into many foreign countries. The Dems have also led military incursions, but how many people have died far away from home under the Repubs vs. under the Dems? The numbers are out there.

BUT Republicans do favor economic policies that result in working, middle, and poor classes having less, therefore, dying earlier than wealthier people. And how many wound up dead from stress, suicide, or drug/alcohol use during the Republican-led Great Recession?   

No, Both Parties Are NOT The Same!
So this is not really a "Both parties are at fault because of partisanship" kind of thing. The baseball shooter was a left-wing nut, apparently a long-time loon, but perhaps we should politicize some of the insanity going on these days (even if we try not to policitize the baseball shooter rampage). And, first, I blame much of this insanity on Trumpsters, the alt-right, the right wing blogosphere.. and I blame Republicans who won't stand up to this bunch second.

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