Turning up the rhetoric to 11!
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Following the tragedy in Tucson, the leftist media has been pushing the meme that “toxic rhetoric” in politics needs to be toned down. I (dis)respectfully disagree. Conservatives will not be silenced by radicals who would love nothing more than for opposition to be muzzled to allow the Left to continue their march to socialism, unabated and uninterrupted.
During my morning pass through Twitter, I caught two key pieces on this topic from the American Spectator. In “Defending Toxic Rhetoric“, Justin Paulette catches the point:
Those insisting that right-wing rhetoric is to blame for this, or future, atrocities have two goals: to generally disparage conservatives and to silence political opposition to liberal policies. The former is the typical politicking customary to baser characters in every party. The second, however, bears on a fundamental aspect of American democracy: free speech.
Now those who disagree will predictably and amusingly trot out the tired “yelling ‘fire’ in a crowded theater” argument to oppose the free speech point. Paulette hits this type of objection head on:
Certainly, speech has boundaries. The first boundary is legal. Words inciting violence or panic are excepted from First Amendment protections. But assertions that conservatives have engaged in such solicitations are absurd — as evidenced by the dearth of examples accompanying accusations by Krugman et al. Even Democrat Paul Kanjorski’s recent public suggestion that we stand the Republican candidate for Governor of Florida “against a wall and shoot him” doesn’t reach the level of criminality. Again, Republicans have never uttered such invectives.
The second boundary is political. Political parties bear some responsibility to enforce rhetorical limits internally. For example, Democrats might have condemned any of the hundreds of liberal protestors holding various “Kill/Shoot/Hang Bush” posters at leftist demonstration across the country for eight years. Republicans have never had occasion to reprimand conservatives for such consistent depths of depravity.