While we're still in the early stages of fact-gathering following the attempted assassination of Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona -- and I really don't like to jump to conclusions -- I can't deny the terrible feeling I immediately got when I heard about this.
It was heightened when I read this quote in the piece about the shooting currently running in the New York Times:
"During the fall campaign, Sarah Palin, the former Republican vice-presidential candidate, posted a controversial map on her Facebook page depicting spots where Democrats were running for re-election; those Democrats were noted by crosshairs symbols like those seen through the scope of a gun. Ms. Giffords was among those on Ms. Palin’s map."
So, yeah, anybody wanna put any bets down?
(Update: I likely won't be sitting here adding little tidbits as they come in all night -- there's the Huffington Post and Twitter for that -- but one thing is really worth reminding people in all of this: A federal judge and a nine-year-old girl are among the dead. Just unbelievable.)