Sunday, January 09, 2011

Quote of the Day

"When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous. And, unfortunately, Arizona I think has become sort of the capital. We have become the Mecca for prejudice and bigotry... It's not unusual for all public officials to get threats constantly, myself included. And that's the sad thing of what's going on in America. Pretty soon, we're not going to be able to find reasonable, decent people who are willing to subject themselves to serve in public office... Let me just say one thing, because people tend to poo-poo this business about all the vitriol that we hear inflaming the American public by people who make a living off of doing that. That may be free speech. But it's not without consequences."

-- Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik

The momentous nature of this comment, coming as it did from a public official, simply can't be overstated. If by some miracle the unconscionable attempted assassination of Gabby Giffords -- as well as the murder of, among others, Judge John Roll, Congressional Aide Gabe Zimmerman and 9-year-old Christina Green, who was born, ironically, on September 11th, 2001 -- becomes a turning point in our national discourse, then Sheriff Dupnik's call against arms may very well stand as the Cronkite-saying-we-can't-win moment of this repugnant era.

It may seem like such a pedestrian observation to those who've closely followed the increase in irresponsibly incendiary rhetoric within our national politics, but make no mistake: what Sheriff Dupnik said took unbelievable balls. The man is a hero and he's owed a huge debt of gratitude for taking those who even indirectly incite violence to task. And no matter how much they deny, misdirect and obfuscate -- they know who they are.


Anonymous said...

So, how long will it take before rational people stand up? The whole "This too shall pass" thing is overrated, I believe.

Nathan said...

I was taken by that statement when I heard it as well. Not just what he said, but his tone. It may be the one meaningful, sane thing we'll hear in all of this.

Anonymous said...

With all due respect, I'm thinking about pots and kettles calling each other black as I read this.

Who among us knows what it is to "indirectly incite violence"? I suspect it always has more to do with the listener than with the speaker. And yet I've watched enough school-yard brawls to know that violence can be egged-on, made a dare, incited.

So let there be peace on Earth and let it begin with . . . thee.

Tuba Terry said...


I hope I'm wrong on this, but I think he's going to be completely ignored by the people that need to hear what he had to say. The people who tune into those incendiary shows aren't going to be exposed to it, and those that are will probably just bury their heads in the sand.

Here's hoping I'm wrong.

lakelady said...


Kevin Davis said...


"And you know, I'm hoping that we're not getting to Second Amendment remedies. I hope the vote will be the cure for the Harry Reid problems." - Sharron Angle.

Jason said...

Thanks for posting Chez. This is a quote that can lead a Generation to stand up and support right over wrong. It is wrong that Mainstream Media can brew this destructive bigotry in today's culture and build up all that empowers violence and disrespects the rights of future generations.

Sheriff Bart said...


"Commonsense Conservatives & lovers of America: 'Don't Retreat: Instead - RELOAD!'" - Sarah Palin

Sheriff Bart said...

Also this:

And this:

And this:

Steven D Skelton said...

It never ceases to amaze me how quickly the left will take a tragedy and use it for political gain.

As far as I know, at this point there is no connection between this guy and the tea party/Sarah Palin/Glenn Beck ect.

But we shouldn't let a little thing like facts get in the way of our political haymakers.

The left just wants to use things like this to shut up people with whom they disagree. (And for the record, I don't like these people or what they say either...but I'm not going to blame them for murders that, at this point, have nothing to do with them.)

CNNfan said...

Murder is not a Second Amendment remedy.

Anonymous said...

Here we go again in Arizona, as people with political agendas unleash their attacks even before the victims of this senseless shooting have been buried. I find it depressing beyond belief.This isn't about a nearly year-old Sarah Palin map; it's about a lone nutjob who doesn't value human life. It would be nice if we briefly put aside partisan differences and came together with sympathy and support for Gabby Giffords and the other victims, rather than opening rhetorical fire ourselves.

- Howard Kurtz -

Bill Orvis White said...

I made everyone at church mad today so I'm out here in the shed or better yet, my doghouse.

I got up in front of the crowd and said if someone at that Arizona event was armed with as good if not better weapon than than the sick kid, then that person could have stopped this tragedy. They cheered.

Then I said that if the government had this kid in an electric registry, then they wouldn't have let him run around with a gun. Miss Ginny threw her purse at me. Delores kneed me in my private spots. Minister Walker gave me the finger. Even Roosevelt shook his head at me.

I'm out here without any dinner tonight. I'm thinking of heading over to Chik fil A -- wait they're closed on God's day and besides, Nate from that store dumped his hot coffee on me. No one from Hardee's is from the church, maybe I'm safe there. C'mon Roosevelt, I know you're reading this and I know you can agree to disagree with me. Come over to Hardee's with me.

God Bless,

Chez said...

Yeah, Steven, the Sheriff there strikes me as a real bleeding-heart leftie. I'd say you're way too smart to not grasp the cause and effect -- because you are -- but I've been through this with you ad nauseam so I'm not going to repeat myself. We'll have to agree to disagree on this.

Anonymous said...

I hate it when attempted assassinations are politicized.

What strikes me is the "political gain" notion. It's still a win/lose game to these people. It's not about gain for one side, it's pivoting off a horrible event as a plea for sanity and civility. Why can't everyone agree on sanity? Is it because that would exclude too much of the Republican base?

This reminds me of the global warming foes who would rather be for pollution then a cause that might be tilted liberal. If you can't get behind civil discourse in politics, you really are part of the problem here.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that the same people who have for years defended violent video games and music performances - the raunchier and bloodier the better -complain when those cultural references inevitably begin to work their way into our political discourse.

If you are honestly looking for cause and effect, you can't miss this.

Chez said...

While I've said before that you're an idiot if you don't accept that violence in pop culture -- movies, video games, etc.-- can have an effect of those who are susceptible to those kinds of suggestion, would someone please like to explain to Anonymous the difference between violent imagery in art and violent suggestion from those in politics or from people who pass themselves off as arbiters of news and information?

Anonymous said...

Bill O'sinko White said:

"I got up in front of the crowd and said if someone at that Arizona event was armed with as good if not better weapon than than the sick kid, then that person could have stopped this tragedy. They cheered."

thanks Billy White for pointing out that you can prevent killing with guns by.... killing with bigger guns.

bright boy bill.

Anonymous said...

While violent video games have been a convenient target for the "won't someone please think of the children" crowd, the fact is that teen violence has been trending downward for about 15 years. It may be sublimation or possibly that teens are too fat from laying around to go out and get into a fight. The big difference is that 99% know that it's just a fucking game. The inflammatory rhetoric being referred to here is often given a veneer of respectability by coming from what appears to be a news source and is therefore taken very seriously by a number of people. Some of those who take it seriously are whack jobs that think they are saving everyone from a threat that only a few others see and find validation in that their fears are being addressed on what they think is the news and think they have to act. Then there are tears.

CNNfan said...

@Howard Kurtz,

The anniversary of the 1991 assassination attempt on Al Sharpton is this Wednesday, January 12th. Hearing from the Reverand may have relevance for viewers trying to cope with this tragic news.

One of the reasons Reliable Sources is good Sunday morning TV, 11am ET, is that it comes in handy as a headstart for bloggers. Reliable Sources is must watch TV that makes blogging more fun.

hint: Special request for the Reverend.

Brandon said...

No kidding. Beating up a pimp in Grand Theft Auto is a far cry from posting a US map with crosshairs over particular districts.

The interesting this is the defense reaction from conservatives about the sheriff's comments. In Dupnik's quote, he does not condemn conservatives, he condemns incidiar rhetoric. The only reason I see for reactions like that of Sen. Kyl is a guilty conscience.

Anonymous said...

Chez, I'd explain it but truly- Explaining things to certain kinds of people is like disciplining a dog a week after it crapped in the house. They just end up looking at you funny and never get it.

Sheriff Bart said...

Once upon a time, I was playing GTA. After getting a car shaking blowjob from a random hooker(and bashing her brains in with a baseball bat just to get my money back) I decided to drive my stolen car right into the police station. My wanted level shot through the roof after I opened up on the precinct with my AK47. I couldn't get away fast enough, and was killed by pretty much everybody around me.
I respawned outside the hospital with all my weapons taken away. I Turned off my Playstation and logged onto the internet with the hope of finding a cheat code that would give me my weapons back.
While I was doing that, I saw on my television Sharon Angle was talking about Second Amendment solutions to the Harry Reid solution.
And I was like, "Is she really suggesting that someone should shoot these people? That's fucking crazy."

Anonymous said...

Chez 8:34pm:

The only difference between "violent imagery in art" and "violent suggestion from those in politics" is context - one metaphoric device is used in an artistic, cultural context and the other in politics. These contexts cannot be kept separate.

I don't disagree that elected officials and journalists SHOULD aspire to express themselves and their ideas as statesmen. But the comment was about the powerful cultural pressures that push against statesmanship, against respect for and to one's fellow man - an apparent cause and effect relationship that is so inconvenient to those who pushed this envelope off the table and into the toilet that they dismiss it summarily - precisely as you did.

Steven D Skelton said...


Turns out that Sheriff is a highly partisan Democrat. Maybe not a bleeding heart liberal, but he certainly isn't a law-and-order type sheriff.

Furthermore, it turns out the kid doesn't look much like a conservative. Among his favorite books are the communist manifesto, One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest and Mein Kampf. One of the videos "favorited" on his youtube is a masked man burning an American Flag.

Now, I don't go to the Sara Palin rallies, but I'm pretty sure they aren't reading Mein Kampf and burning flags.

Jonah said...

In my opinion this is not a question of Left vs. Right because this kid was anti-government in all forms (and has been long enough for both a Republican and Democrat to be in the White House) based on paranoid delusions of mind control (sounds like a certain broadcast news personality we all know).

This is about vitriol and responsibility. We need to be able to have high-minded debate, and report on that debate, from all sides in the country without reducing to lowest common denominator in order for the system to work.

That being said - @Steven D Skelton, it is pretty unfair and irresponsible to point out how the left may use tragedy for political gain without giving equal time to the right. Let's count how many times GOP candidates co-opted 9/11 for their own political gain.

Chez said...

Steven, I agree with you that this guy is a garden-variety nutjob whose ideology is tough to pin down. But the larger debate over whether our political discourse has become too vitriolic -- and if you argue that the same level of unfocused incendiary rage is coming from the left as the right, you're just not accepting reality -- remains a worthwhile one. I think the sheriff said it perfectly -- as have a few others -- when he stated at actions and words occasionally have consequences. Once again, I've done the back-and-forth on this with you before and I really don't feel like doing it again. If you can't see a dangerous connection between the heightened level of irresponsible invective in modern politics and what some who live on the fringes are willing to do about their own heavily-stoked political hatreds, I'm not going to be able to convince you.

Kevin Davis said...


All the sheriff did is point out the vitriol by "people who make a living off of doing that" without going after a specific side, and somehow you're labeling him a "bleeding heart liberal"? If belief in civil discourse renders one liberal, then that is a sorry state of affairs for what the Republican party has turned into.

Steven D Skelton said...


If you want to have a conversation about civility in politics, I'm your man. I agree with you almost all the way to your final conclusion where this particular incident has anything to do with anything right wing voices say.

We have seemingly lost our ability to recognize that reasonable people can disagree and still both be reasonable. As I've said before, one of the reasons I read your blog is that you can disagree without demonizing and disrespecting.

And you're right, this is dangerous for our democracy. But that danger isn't the incitement of random lunatics. It's much greater than that.

The democracy has proven it can survive random and targeted assassinations.

The danger is that we stop being "we."

And you're also correct that there isn't an equivalency in what you call "violent rhetoric."

But there is an equivalency in disrespect, demonization and hatred. Tea Party...all boneheaded bigots and racists incapable of thinking for themselves. Mexican Americans...all part of La Raza trying reconquest the southwest. Pro-lifers...misogynists who hate women. Liberals concerned about income distribution....socialists trampling upon the constitution.

We can survive the random shooter, and I guess we'll just have to disagree about whose fault it is. But our problem as a nation is much bigger than that.

Steven D Skelton said...


I didn't label the sheriff.

Belief in civil discourse doesn't render one a liberal, conservative ect.

I'm not a Republican.

Steven D Skelton said...


I would agree with you that certainly the right has used 9/11 for political benefit.

Steven D Skelton said...

If anyone cares to read what I have to say....

If not, that's cool too.

Kevin Davis said...


Yes you did label the Sheriff. From your words:

"Turns out that Sheriff is a highly partisan Democrat. Maybe not a bleeding heart liberal"

Sorry, I just used the wrong label. You said "highly partisan Democrat" rather than "bleeding heart liberal".

When you didn't supply any evidence to your claim of being a highly partisan Democrat, I assumed the quote Chez posted was what led you to that conclusion.

Oh, and regarding your comment:

"The danger is that we stop being "we.""

Go tell that to Glenn Beck who is calling for armed revolution, as well as Sharron Angle who is advocating "second amendment remedies".

Finally, regarding this gem:

But there is an equivalency in disrespect, demonization and hatred. Tea Party...all boneheaded bigots and racists incapable of thinking for themselves. Mexican Americans...all part of La Raza trying reconquest the southwest. Pro-lifers...misogynists who hate women. Liberals concerned about income

I assume in the above sentence "disrespect, demonization and hatred" is the conclusion and the rest are the premises in which this is based upon. How exactly is "income distribution" disrespect, demonization, and hatred? What about asking people who make more than $1,000,000 a year to pay more of a share than the middle class is "disrespect, demonization, and hatred"?

It's entirely unfair to lump them in with the Tea Party, which has religious intolerance (unless your Christian) and homophobia demonstrably baked into their core ideals.

As for La Raza, having many many Hispanic friends here I find that comment borderline racist but mostly supremely idiotic.

Mart said...

Do we have to go through this drill every couple of months (weeks) after another nutty domestic terrorist shooter/bomber/pilot does his thing? Obviously the reason Dems complain about Repub elimination rhetoric is it is a secret plan by Dems to criminalize and jail all God-loving, pro-gun, anti-abortion folks for their thought crimes. This is why the Dems must be stopped at all costs - they are out to get you - and your guns. Spin, rinse (shoot), repeat.

CNNfan said...

The Christopher Colombus map had crosshairs on it way back in 1490. Go see for yourself on Wikipedia.

Those are definitely not gun scope crosshairs on Sarah Palin's map. The lines would be in the circle, not outside the circle, because a gun scope is a hollow cylinder that you look through!

Maps have crosshairs on them, and have had them for hundreds of years. I feel that the people making these ridiculous claims against Sarah Palin may have become so uninformed because of gun control that they may be unwittingly exploiting the victims of this tragic crime.

Steven D Skelton said...


Perhaps I was misunderstood.

There is nothing wrong with being pro-life, pro-choice, concerned about illegal immigration or concerned about income distribution.

That is the point I was making.

Mart said...

Hey CNN fan, I do not know why the idiot murdered so many people, but do not try that BS it was not crosshairs. First she issued the map after the vote where many Dems (including Gifford)had there offices vandalized and some R's were asking folks to calm down. Also too, Nov. 4, 2010 Sarah Palin Tweet: “Remember months ago “bullseye” icon used 2 target the 20 Obamacare-lovin’ incumbent seats? We won 18 out of 20 (90% success rate;T’aint bad)

See, she called it a bullseye icon. Not a surveyors mark. Folks need to be honest, and stop the nonsense.

CNNfan said...


Crosshairs were used on maps over 400 years before the telescopic gun sight was even invented.

Crosshairs on maps are so extremely common, that digital crosshairs have been adapted for use with digital maps.

Falsely accusing Sarah Palin, because a map had crosshairs on it, is just inconsistent with reason and common sense.

Most maps have crosshairs of some type on them. Even longitude and latitude, perpendicular to each other, are crosshairs on a map. Placing a circle simply designates them. I honestly and sincerely can not see how anyone with common sense can dispute this.

Thanks for sharing your opinion.

Mart said...

Sorry Chez & understand if too long to post... but


I understand if you find a deer’s throat in a scope, or treasure on a Pirate's map - "X" marks the spot. Please do not say this again.

If you respond please refute the following facts:

Two days after the landslide 2010election Sarah Palin referred to the map by Tweeting, "Remember months ago “bullseye” icon used 2 target...".

The day after one of those targets was shot, Palin's assistant called it a "Surveyors Mark". They also deleted the target list map from Palin's website.

I am fairly certain the map had nothing to do with the shooting. I just think it is part of Palin's repeated behavior of dangerously tossing inflammatory words at opponents. It’s odd to me that Palin, who wants to run the Government, keeps telling her electorate that our Government is working to harm them. Those are my opinions.

The facts are her words, actions and her target list. To respond by ignoring Palin’s own words and actions is false, and it is just inconsistent with reason and common sense. I honestly and sincerely can not see how anyone with common sense can dispute this.

Anonymous said...

@ Steven D Skelton (and others who took offense at Dupnik's statement);

The Sheriff never called out you specifically. He never called out any of your ideological mouth-pieces specifically.

If you took his words to heart and took offense (left or right), maybe you need to look at yourself and the rhetoric you've supported or participated in spreading.

Anonymous said...

So Palin's camp is too stupid to differentiate a surveyor's mark from a real set of target cross-hairs in their initial adverts. Or they were mimicking gun sights from video games (or the hunting sights that I've seen that DO actually feature this "surveyors mark" style with a circle and cross-hairs within the cylinder of the scope.)

It doesn't matter how they try and spin it now. Palin's rhetoric at the time made it clear what her intention was.

Did it inspire the shooter? Maybe, maybe not.

Was it uncivil, divisive, and intended to be intimidating? Undoubtedly.

CNNfan said...


If the assertion being made is that running negative ads, during election season, is like "The Catcher in the Rye", then the diagnosis may be GCP (Gun Control Phobia), a mind control that creates an anxiety disorder of gun sights appearing from everyday reality.

As Gun Control Phobia progresses, gun sights begin to appear everywhere. Icons on computer desktops become gun sights. Bullseye in dart games turn into gun sights. In advanced cases, gun sights start appearing in virtual reality cyberspace on social networks.

The cure is simple:
Surf less web, watch more TV news.

Note to the management: These humorous comments are definitely politely intended to fellow DXMer Mart. So, please don't ban me again.