What has our society come to that public servants we elect to serve us our targets for the deranged and disturbed. On Saturday, Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head as she was conducting an open townhall type meet and greet outside a Tucson grocery store. In the attack, Gifford along with 13 others were wounded and 6 were killed, including Federal District Judge John Roll, a Giffords staffer, and a 9 year old girl. It is clear that the target was the congresswoman and that the district judge was only there by coincidence and not an actual target. But that doesn't matter as this clearly was an attack on the government. Today, the collective thoughts of the entire nation are with Rep. Giffords and all the other victims as the recover or in the worst cases, are remembered. Doctors are cautiously optimistic that she will pull through, and we all hope she does.
What is troubling by this is the cause of the shooting spree. Some political and domestic terror analysts are pointing at the violent rhetoric coming from the conservative end of the media, mainly Fox News and conservative talk radio. If you remember during th last election cycle, Sarah Palin placed on her PAC's website a map of the country with gun site cross-hairs on 10 districts that voted for McCain that had Democratic representatives that voted for the healthcare reform bill, one of those being Rep. Giffords district, another one being the one I currently reside in. Someone deranged like the young man who shot Giffords, could have taken those cross-hairs literally and went after her. Sarah Palin has taken down the map, but has yet to apologize for possibly being the reason for the shooting. However, this is not the first time someone from the right, mainly from Fox News, has inciting and been the reason behind a violent act. If you will remember, an abortion physician, Dr. George Tiller, was gunned down while in his church on a Sunday morning. This happened after Bill O'Reilly repeatedly called him Tiller the Baby Killer on his show. The violent rhetoric needs to end, and it must start with the FCC pulling the plug on Fox News. Free speech and press or not, Fox must take the blame for these terrible actions. Stating your opinion is one thing, calling for for violence against public figures is taking it entirely too far. We need to bring our society back from the edge of the cliff of sanity. John Stewart had the right idea with his Rally to Restore Sanity, because it appears we have lost it.