Scarborough Rips Palin, Beck’s Right-Wing Violent ‘Rage’ Talk
January 18, 2011
(ChattahBox Political News)— MSNBC’s Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough penned a screed in Politico today slamming Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and the rest of the right-wing hate talkers for “spewing rage on a daily basis,” and refusing to admit the connection “between violent rhetoric and violent actions.” Scarborough took particular aim at Palin for her offensive and politically tone-deaf “blood libel” video in the wake of the Tucson rampage, in which she cast herself as a victim, while a grieving family made plans to bury their nine-year-old daughter and Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (D-AZ) lies in a hospital with a bullet wound to her head. Scarborough, while acknowledging there was no direct connection between Palin’s incendiary rhetoric and the Tucson shooting, previously urged Palin to apologize for her targeting of Giffords with a “crosshairs” map and a violent call to “Don’t retreat, instead RELOAD!” The former Republican Congressman is now challenging Republican leaders to denounce the “reckless rhetoric” used by the far-right if they expect to be taken seriously in the 2012 presidential election.
It’s noteworthy that Palin’s petty, self-serving and defensive response to critics of her violent rhetoric in a weird video and an appearance on Fox News’ Sean Hannity, where she works as a paid contributor, is not widely supported by members of her own Party, except for her fringe tea party base. Conservative pundit David Frum said Palin should just “stop talking now.”
In Scarborough’s Politico piece, he holds out no hope that the likes of Palin or Beck would “call out irresponsible language or lead the discussion back to civility…” But he is still shocked by their callous disregard for the effect their inflammatory rhetoric may have on their mentally unstable supporters.
“We get it, Sarah Palin. You’re not morally culpable for the tragic shooting in Tucson, Ariz. All of us around the “Morning Joe” table agree, even if we were stunned that you would whine about yourself on Facebook as a shattered family prepared to bury their 9-year-old girl.”
“The same goes for you, Glenn Beck. You’ve attacked your political opponents with words designed to inspire hatred and mind-bending conspiracy theories from fans. Calling the president a racist, Marxist and fascist may be reprehensible, but it did not lead a mentally disturbed man to take a Glock to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’s “Congress on Your Corner” event.”
Scarborough points out that it’s only a matter of time before right-wing hate talk directly leads to acts of violence. And Beck may have already incited his viewers to engage in violent acts.
“But before you and the pack of right-wing polemicists who make big bucks spewing rage on a daily basis congratulate yourselves for not being responsible for Jared Lee Loughner’s rampage, I recommend taking a deep breath. Just because the dots between violent rhetoric and violent actions don’t connect in this case doesn’t mean you can afford to ignore the possibility — or, as many fear, the inevitability — that someone else will soon draw the line between them.”
“Actually, someone already has. When you get a minute, Google “Byron Williams” and “Tides Foundation” to see just how thin a layer of ice Beck skates on every day.”
Scarborough went on to state the obvious–that regardless of a direct connection, Palin has to live with the fact that she targeted Rep. Giffords with violent rhetoric and gun imagery in the midst of a politically charged health care debate, in which Democratic lawmakers were already being threatened. Giffords complained about Palin’s “crosshairs” map during an appearance on MSNBC, saying “there are consequences” to Palin’s irresponsible rhetoric.
Scarborough asks, “Who, other than Palin’s most strident supporters, was not troubled by the bull’s-eye target over Giffords’s district? Or the political advertisement promoting the removal of Giffords from office with the firing of a “fully automatic M16” with her opponent? Or the gunned-down congresswoman’s own warning to NBC’s Chuck Todd that violent words have consequences?”
Now, Giffords is in the hospital after a madman tried to assassinate her by shooting her point blank in her head. And Palin continues to whine about the media manufacturing a “blood libel” against her. During her appearance on Hannity last night, the unapologetic Palin complained once again, about how the liberals and the “lamestream” media are out to destroy her. “I am not going to shut up,” she said.
Not once, did the former half-term governor even mention the names of the victims of the Tucson shooting. And of course, Palin never mentioned the fact that Giffords expressed concern over Palin’s use of gun rhetoric to target her just months before the lawmaker was was gunned down in front of a Safeway supermarket.
At the time, Palin responded by doubling down on her “reload” rhetoric.
It’s all about Sarah, all the time. And finally, she may have alienated, once and for all, the rational voices left in the Republican party, as well as Independent voters, ending whatever slim chance she may have had to capture the Republican presidential primary.
Now that Palin has further marginalized herself, when will the media stop breathlessly reporting on her every tweet and Facebook post as breaking news?
Take a look at the video below for an example of Palin’s fringe base.
Photo Source: Scarborough, MSNBC official photo, Palin, Wikimedia/Therealbs2002/Creative Commons Attribution