On April 4th, Richard Poplawski hunkered down in his home in Pittsburgh, shot and killed three police officers responding to a ‘domestic call’ of some kind. Poplawski’s spree was just the latest in a rash of incidents involving guns invoking confusion and dismay.
The Washington Post then attempted to make sense out of all it, asking if there was a link between the downing of the economy with all the recent killings.
The factor underlying the violence, some experts think, is the dismal state of the nation’s economy. Criminologists theorize that the epidemic of layoffs, the meltdown of storied American corporations and the uncertainty of recovery have stoked fear, anxiety and desperation across society and unnerved its most vulnerable and dangerous.
However – the day of Poplawski’s rampage was transpiring I was flipping through the channels and caught this on Fox News. I hesitated just long enough to hear all the gunfire so I stopped. What I actually saw was the few minute or so of Clip #1 together with the Video #2 below wherein Fox News is talking to and interviewing a neighbor of Mr. Poplawski in Pittsburgh, who does not sound like a Fox News viewer.
Promptly after airing this clip, Jarrett went off into a tirade about certain rights being taken away if Obama has his way or some shit. It was stunning especially in light of the statements from Poplawski’s neighbor: ”
Apparently – this is considered by some to be “proof” that Obama will be “coming to get our guns” that are such a vital and essential part of every American’s life.
The week’s murders culminated in the slaughter of 5 kids by their father outside Spokane, after he apparently confronted their mother away from their home, returning afterward to kill his kids.
Last Sunday, I read the column written by Charles Blow in the NY-Times. He was describing his immersion into ‘right wing media’ or as some have taken to referring to it – White Wing Media. The focus was no longer on the economy when it came to gun violence but something more sinister. The insidiousness of colossal ignorance, the right to own firearms and the blatant unwillingness to have that right abridged in any way.
“My read: They’re apocalyptic. They feel isolated, angry, betrayed and besieged. And some of their leaders seem to be trying to mold them into militias.”
And they’re buying up guns.
David Schuster, subbing for Tweety, had Mr. Charles Blow on Hardball along with Mr. Alan Gottlieb (Second Amendment Foundation founder). Schuster’s question: “Is right wing rhetoric helping to push violence in America?”
From the Washington Post story cited above.
The Rev. Jesse L. Jackson called the recent spate of killings “domestic terrorism” and said he hoped the slaughter would be a wake-up call for policymakers.
Wouldn’t count on it. I don’t think the ReThuglicans are interested.
David Neiwert at Crooks and Liars has had an unbelievable ‘series’ of posts on this; a partial list is below if you’re interested in reading.
- Right-wing fearmongering to fever pitch
- As their power spirals downward – the Right just gets nuttier and nastier. *Complete with Nazi imagery from Glenn Beck.
- Poplawski – Part I, Part II, and Part III
His outstanding work on militias is renowned and it looks like I’ll be picking up this.
I’m proud to announce today the publication of my fourth book: The Eliminationists: How Hate Talk Radicalized the American Right, by PoliPoint Press.
The book is an outgrowth of the work I’ve done over the years at my old blog Orcinus, where the chief subject since the very first post has been the intersection of right-wing extremism and mainstream politics. Indeed, anyone who’s read my work over the years — especially those Koufax-winning series on fascism — will recognize at least some of the prose contained herein.
Get ready for one helluva ride.