Even by the Left’s usual standards, the shamelessness and dishonesty of their reaction to psychopath Jared Loughner’s shooting spree in Tucson, Arizona—blaming his actions on the allegedly violent and inflammatory rhetoric of conservatives—is almost without peer. It became clear fairly early on that Loughner had serious mental issues and bizarre, apolitical reasons for hating Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. That did not prevent leftist politicians, journalists, commentators, and celebrities from smearing their political foes as accomplices to murder, however. To date, only one notable left-of-center figure—Kirsten Powers—has had the integrity to condemn this smear campaign.
This isn’t new—leftists have a history of blaming conservatives for apolitical crimes (sometimes they even blame conservatives for leftist crimes). In reality, the Left doesn’t care in the slightest about elevating our political discourse. The clearest indicator of their insincerity is that they never hold their own to these standards. The Left’s record of hate and vitriol is the stuff of legend, and while the media likes to forget about it, leftists commit acts of violence, too. Let’s remind them.
7.) Bradley Neal Crowder
In September 2008, Crowder was busted outside of the Republican National Convention for possession of a Molotov cocktail. It turns out his planned good old-fashioned rioting was a group outing—he came to the convention from Austin, Texas, along with a radical organization called the Austin Affinity Group:
The group brought a rental trailer with them that contained 35 riot shields, made from stolen traffic barrels. The intended use of the shields was to help demonstrators block streets near the Xcel Energy Center in order to prevent convention delegates from safely reaching the convention. St. Paul Police seized these shields on Aug. 31.
According to trial testimony, McKay and Crowder, angered by the loss of the shields, purchased supplies for constructing Molotov cocktails at a St. Paul Wal-Mart on Aug. 31, including a gas can, motor oil and tampons. They also purchased gasoline at a gas station. They then manufactured the eight Molotov cocktails at an apartment on Dayton Avenue where they were staying.
During a FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force investigation, authorities learned through an informant that McKay and Crowder had manufactured the Molotov cocktails. Crowder was arrested on Sept. 1 for disorderly conduct during an RNC demonstration.
During a conversation overheard by law enforcement through electronic surveillance on Sept. 2, McKay told an informant that he intended to throw the Molotov cocktails at police vehicles parked in a lot near the Dayton Avenue apartment. The parking lot was used as a checkpoint area for vehicles entering the security perimeter around the convention site. It was visibly patrolled by the U.S. Secret Service, various police agencies and the military.
6.) Amy Bishop
On February 12, 2010, University of Alabama Professor Amy Bishop opened fire during a biology department meeting, killing three of her colleagues and injuring three more. As Michelle Malkin has documented, Bishop had an assault record, and students and professors had raised concerns about her mental state. She also may have murdered her brother in 1986.
A far-right professor? Nope—her political views were reportedly in line with the average academic. On February 15, the Boston Herald reported that a “family source” described Bishop as “a far left political activist who was ‘obsessed’ with President Obama to the point of being off putting.” On RateMyProfessors.com, students described her as a “liberal” and a “socialist” in a comment that has apparently been since removed.
Granted, Bishop was apparently motivated by fear of losing her job, not politics, but if we’re going by the rationale put forth by Paul Krugman and company, who’s to say the “culture of hostility” her fellow travelers fostered had nothing to do with her seeing “Second Amendment solutions” as a legitimate way to solve her problems?
.) James Von Brunn
On June 10, 2009, Von Brunn shot up the U.S. Holocaust Museum, hitting three and killing security guard Stephen Tyrone Johns. Unsurprisingly, he turned out to be a raging anti-Semite, a brand of bigot often characterized as right-wing by smear groups, but more often drawn to the anti-Israel policies of the Left. As Kathy Shaidle revealed, though, Von Brunn held other views that are much harder for leftists to disavow:
[M]any of von Brunn’s political views track “Left” rather than “Right.” Clearly, a re-evaluation of these obsolete definitions is long overdue.
For example, he unleashed his hatred of both Presidents Bush and other “neo-conservatives” in online essays. As even some “progressives” such as the influential Adbusters magazine publicly admit, “neoconservative” is often used as a derogatory code word for “Jews”. As well, even a cursory glance at “white supremacist” writings reveals a hatred of, say, big corporations that is virtually indistinguishable from that of anti-globalization activists.
James von Brunn’s advocacy of 9/11 conspiracy theories also gives him an additional commonality with individuals on the far-left.
Von Brunn also hated Christianity:
These dangerous, imbecilic, concepts, tenets, and teachings, often treasonous, DESTROYED the Roman Empire and drenched the soil of Europe with Aryan blood for almost 2000 years!
The Big Lie technique, employed by Paul to create the CHRISTIAN RELIGION, also was used to create the HOLOCAUST RELIGION … CHRISTIANITY AND THE HOLOCAUST are HOAXES.
“Christianity” destroyed Roman Civilization. The “Holocaust” Religion is destroying Western Civilization. The Aryan gene-pool dies, “unwept, unhonored and unsung.”
James Von Brunn sounds more like a cross between David Corn, Alex Jones, and Sam Harris than he does Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh.
4.) Joe Stack
On February 18, 2010, Joseph Stack crashed a small plane into an IRS building, injuring 13 people while killing himself and IRS manager Vernon Hunter. Left-wing writers wasted no time in linking him to the Tea Party; after all, he hated the Internal Revenue Service, and all anti-government sentiments are pretty much the same, right?
Nope. It turns out Stack was a nut, but not a wingnut. He posted a manifesto online before taking flight, in which he rails against the rich, insurance companies, President George W. Bush, the Catholic Church, and capitalism:
Why is it that a handful of thugs and plunderers can commit unthinkable atrocities (and in the case of the GM executives, for scores of years) and when it’s time for their gravy train to crash under the weight of their gluttony and overwhelming stupidity, the force of the full federal government has no difficulty coming to their aid within days if not hours? Yet at the same time, the joke we call the American medical system, including the drug and insurance companies, are murdering tens of thousands of people a year and stealing from the corpses and victims they cripple, and this country’s leaders don’t see this as important as bailing out a few of their vile, rich cronies. Yet, the political “representatives” (thieves, liars, and self-serving scumbags is far more accurate) have endless time to sit around for year after year and debate the state of the “terrible health care problem”. It’s clear they see no crisis as long as the dead people don’t get in the way of their corporate profits rolling in […]
Some friends introduced me to a group of people who were having ‘tax code’ readings and discussions. In particular, zeroed in on a section relating to the wonderful “exemptions” that make institutions like the vulgar, corrupt Catholic Church so incredibly wealthy […]
The recent presidential puppet GW Bush and his cronies in their eight years certainly reinforced for all of us that this criticism rings equally true for all of the government. Nothing changes unless there is a body count (unless it is in the interest of the wealthy sows at the government trough). In a government full of hypocrites from top to bottom, life is as cheap as their lies and their self-serving laws […]
The capitalist creed: From each according to his gullibility, to each according to his greed.
3.) The Service Employees International Union
Lone gunman and bad apples are one thing; the acts of entire organizations are quite another. That brings us to the SEIU. Last seen assaulting black Tea Partier Kenneth Gladney, these guys are masters of the Corleone School of Getting Your Point Across. And when entire busloads of union thugs terrorize together, it’s kind of hard to run the “isolated incident” defense:
By now, you’ve probably seen the mob-scene that developed on the front lawn of the private residence of Greg Baer, deputy general counsel for corporate law at Bank of America. This was planned for some time by the SEIU as part of a larger national event, their Showdown on K Street, which was shared with National People’s Action and thousands of other activists from MoveOn.org and other left-wing groups.
Prior to the main event on K Street in Washington DC, SEIU and company made a little pit stop. According to Fortune magazine Washington editor Nina Easton, 14 busloads of riled up protesters unloaded on Baer’s private property and stormed up to his doorstep, while his teenage son was home alone. Easton is a neighbor of Baer’s and had called to check on her neighbor’s son when she heard and saw all the commotion outside. Easton writes,
“ Waving signs denouncing bank ‘greed,’ hordes of invaders poured out of 14 school buses, up Baer’s steps, and onto his front porch. As bullhorns rattled with stories of debtor calls and foreclosed homes, Baer’s teenage son Jack — alone in the house — locked himself in the bathroom. ‘When are they going to leave?’ Jack pleaded when I called to check on him.
“Baer, on his way home from a Little League game, parked his car around the corner, called the police, and made a quick calculation to leave his younger son behind while he tried to rescue his increasingly distressed teen. He made his way through a din of barked demands and insults from the activists who proudly ‘outed’ him, and slipped through his front door.
“‘Excuse me,’ Baer told his accusers, ‘I need to get into the house. I have a child who is alone in there and frightened.’”
Can you imagine the press’s nonstop howling if, say, FreedomWorks started bussing hundreds of people to the homes of White House czars to harass their families? It would be universally condemned as an outrage without precedent, and rightly so. But Democrat backers? Cue the chirping crickets.
2.) Harlan James Drake
When anti-abortion radical Scott Roeder murdered partial-birth abortionist George Tiller in May 2009, the usual chorus of death-exploiters howled that the Right was to blame, with character assassins like David Frum suggesting Bill O’Reilly bore special responsibility for (accurately) reporting that Tiller was killing viable babies while possibly covering the rape of teenage girls. Everybody knows about Scott Roeder.
But does the name Harlan James Drake ring a bell? On September 11 of that year, Drake murdered a pro-life activist named James Pouillon (as well as businessman Michael Fuoss, in an apparently-unrelated crime). Several news outlets reported that Drake was angered by Pouillon’s use of graphic images of aborted baby corpses. In a sick contrast to the conduct of Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, whose nonstop railing against talk radio in the wake of the Tucson shooting has led to the entire sheriff’s department shutting up about the case until further notice, Chief Shiawassee County Assistant Prosecutor Sara Edwards presented a more charitable theory about Drake’s motives: “Mr. Drake did not believe children should view the graphic material on the signs Mr. Pouillon carried.” Of course, leftists’ nonstop rhetoric about pro-lifers being woman-hating theocrats couldn’t possibly have been a factor…
The Pouillon case offers another even more striking contrast between Right and Left. While numerous leftists have been tripping over each other trying to tie conservatives to Loughner’s massacre, American Life League took the exact opposite route, with a responsible statement on Pouillon’s killing that puts all of today’s opportunists to shame:
Since a motive has not yet been determined, speculation is useless, if not harmful. We commend the Shiawassee County sheriff’s department for its swift apprehension of the suspect, and we pray for God’s justice and mercy.
1.) Jared Loughner
The biggest, most perverse irony of the Tucson shooting is that, to the extent that Loughner has identifiable political views, they lean leftward, not to the right.
One former high-school friend, Caitie Parker, described him as “left wing, quite liberal” as of 2007. From writings he posted online, we know Loughner believes the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are war crimes, seems to agree with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights’ assertion of “the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care,” and that he posted “Crap on God!” repeatedly. He ranted “No! I won’t trust in God!” and favorited a YouTube video calling America a “terrorist country” and depicting a flag burning. He called The Communist Manifesto one of his favorite books.
Most of these details are simply ignored by leftists, but on January 12, Ann Coulter caught the New York Times in “the most bald-faced lie [she has] ever read in that newspaper—which is saying something,” attempting to misrepresent a sick joke Loughner made about abortion as if it was a pro-life argument:
Only because numerous other news outlets, including ABC News and The Associated Press, reported the exact same shocking incident in much greater detail — and with direct quotes — do we know that the Times’ rendition was complete bunk.
ABC News reported: “One Pima Community College student, who had a poetry class with Loughner later in his college career, said he would often act ‘wildly inappropriate.’
“‘One day (Loughner) started making comments about terrorism and laughing about killing the baby,’ classmate Don Coorough told ABC News, referring to a discussion about abortions. ‘The rest of us were looking at him in shock … I thought this young man was troubled.’
“Another classmate, Lydian Ali, recalled the incident as well.
“‘A girl had written a poem about an abortion. It was very emotional and she was teary eyed and he said something about strapping a bomb to the fetus and making a baby bomber,’ Ali said.”
Here’s the Times’ version: “After another student read a poem about getting an abortion, Mr. Loughner compared the young woman to a ‘terrorist for killing the baby.’”
It’s bad enough that we all get blamed for the crimes of rogue conservatives and non-political actors. But do conservatives really have to take responsibility for the actions of leftists, too?
* * *
Let me be clear: while dishonest, inflammatory, and violent left-wing rhetoric should be condemned for its intrinsic sins, it is not to blame for any of the preceding crimes. Sane human beings possess free will, functioning minds, and ultimately choose their own path, while the actions and motivations of the mentally disturbed are irrational. Individuals are ultimately responsible for their own actions; conservatives should not view these individuals as albatrosses to hang around the necks of all who espouse left-wing political views. That is not what this is about.
This is about demonstrating that madness knows no party lines. This is about challenging the Left to hold themselves to the standards they demand of their enemies. This is about exposing the insincerity of the Left’s crocodile tears. For all their wailing about how sweet little Christina-Taylor Green would still be alive today if only Sarah Palin hadn’t used a target symbol on an election map, not a word of it is genuine. If this was a true moral stand and not opportunism of the lowest sort, they would have also shed tears for Stephen Tyrone Johns, Vernon Hunter, and James Pouillon, while expressing remorse for their own contributions to the toxic state of American political discourse. Somewhere along the way, there would have been some hint of self-reflection: maybe we should quit accusing right-wingers of desiring a return to segregation or knowingly launching wars on phony intelligence. Maybe we should apologize for calling Republicans Nazis.
Good luck finding any such conscience pangs. To their shame, leftists persists in whitewashing their record while defaming ours. They don’t belief in civility or mutual respect. Only by recognizing the full extent of their duplicity, and the twisted morals that animate it, can conservatives hope to defeat the Left.