So how is it that it was the Republicans who were crying for the Boston Marathon bombing suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, be designated an enemy combatant rather than as an ordinary murderer, but that it is the liberals who see the bombing as an opportunity to promote increased government control? That’s what Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America wants you to believe. Never mind that it was the Republican George W. Bush who seized upon the events of 9/11 to bequeath unto us the Patriot Act. Never mind that it was Ronald Reagan who presided over the vast growth of the federal government, not Barack Obama.
Watch courtesy of Right Wing Watch:
Larry Pratt: “[T]his is mission oriented, they [liberals] don’t care who the victims are, if anything it might be to their liking because maybe they’re thinking that will make the liberals all the more prone to want more control, which plays right into the hands of terrorists and criminals, but then I repeat myself.”
The Republicans have more storylines going than the WWE; so many in fact, that they can’t keep track. They have one storyline conflicting with another storyline in competing realities. Liberals are this and liberals are that, but liberals cannot, be both Nazis and Communists (since they are diametrically opposing forces ideologically) and both pro- and anti-civil rights.
The resulting incongruity of all these competing storylines is all part of The Amazing Republican Echo Chamber™ which cannibalizes itself in order to stir up more hate and outrage against the people most concerned with making all this unnecessary violence stop. Thus the opportunity I noted here yesterday, to condemn abortion and gay rights for the Boston bombing. Thus the call for more guns as a response to increased violence. No matter how many four-year-olds shoot themselves or other people. No matter that there is no evidence so far that people with guns prevent other people with guns from killing people. All that happens is that people with guns kill people. Period.
In fact, the evidence shows that gun-control laws reduce violence. This was as true of 1870s Dodge City (Before Dodge city came under the control of local authorities, gun violence claimed between 16 and 19 lives in just a year, while in the following four years – gun ordinances in place – not a single individual died as a result of gun violence) as it is of 21st century America in general.
Outrage, of course, demands no cognizance of logic or common sense. Evidence only gets in the way of emotion and outrage is emotional, not logical. No Republican is urging commonsensical reactions or approaches to any of our nation’s problems. If they were, they would be Democrats. The Republican impetus is not on building up, but on tearing down.
It would be nice if the Republicans would settle down and adopt one coherent narrative, but cogent arguments are not their thing. If they settle down to one causality-dependent narrative, they eliminate their opportunity to seize on any event as evidence of something completely unrelated: like gay people or abortion being responsible for Islamic extremists. Or gun opponents being responsible for gun violence. Or God causing volcanic eruptions when the Pacific Ring of Fire would explain things so perfectly without appeal to a wrathful deity who just happens to share the Republican culture war agenda. Or God killing innocent birds because he is so vexed with people not agreeing with the Republicans.
So here we are again facing the “fact” that liberals love Muslim bombers because it gives them an excuse to play Ronald Reagan or George Bush. Look, it’s a twisted little world Republicans inhabit, but it’s the only one they’ve got.
They can’t share ours, after all, because ours makes sense. All they can do is cry wolf again and again – and again, and hope somebody listens. And as fewer and fewer people do listen, we can only expect their cries to become more strident and even sillier, reducing the once great Grand Old Party to a clique of street-corner lunatics. It’s sad to see the party of Lincoln reduced to these straights, but on the other hand, they have only themselves to blame.
Why is why we’re the ones they’re blaming.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.