Tucson Trajedy

It has been all over the news lately… the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona on Saturday morning.  I’ve waited for today for the facts to come out from the shooting since there were so many rumors and misinformation circulating in the hours after the deadly rampage.  One of those rumors was that the Congresswoman had been killed; however, she is alive and recovering at a nearby hospital.  However, there are six dead at the time that I’m writing this… which include a federal judge, a member of Giffords’ staff, and a nine-year-old girl.  The shooter is 22-year old Jared Lee Loughner, and he is in custody.

Within hours of the shooting, the internet lit up with accusations that the Tea Party and Sarah Palin was ultimately responsible for causing this as they have ratcheted up political rhetoric in the past couple of years and have gotten the public all up in arms.  For those that know me personally, I am not a Tea Party fan nor am I a fan of Sarah Palin.  With that said, I am not and will not jump on that particular bandwagon until there is direct evidence that the young man in custody got any of his motives from them.  As far as the evidence has shown thus far, he is a loner and was anti-government.  He was not angry over healthcare or immigration reform.  This could have happened anywhere to any member of Congress.  I wonder if all this Tea Party accusations would be going around currently if the congress-person had been a Republican instead of a Democrat… or for even more thought, a Tea-Party Republican.

Politicians and the media have helped stir-up the populace over the past few years.  Political tensions have run high in many areas of the country… especially in the area of Tucson.  The media should always be mindful of what it releases to the people.  People listen to what they have to say, and all forms of media should be giving out the facts as they are and not give in to hype or rhetoric.  And as for politicians, they too must realize that their words and actions reach out farther than they think they will.  Within our nation, it is normal for us to disagree.  It’s part of what our nation was founded upon.  But we must remember to respect the other side and their opinions.  We want the populace to be involved and to be stirred up, but not with fear and anger… but rather with knowledge and the basic concept that their opinion means something.    And though I don’t believe that the current political atmosphere had anything to do with this shooting, I firmly believe that it should serve as a wake-up call to the media and our politicians to start being more careful with what they say and to bring the rhetoric down.  As House Speaker John Boehner said, “It’s OK to disagree without being disagreeable.”

It is not uncommon for an estranged or “unhinged” person to assassinate (or attempt to) a political figure without there being ties to a political movement or group.  In 1901, President William McKinley was assassinated by an anarchist.  In 1881, President James Garfield was shot by an office seeker that had been turned away.  And even in 1981, President Reagan was shot by a mentally-unhinged man that had nothing to do with the political atmosphere.  When involved in politics, it is always a possibility that some estranged person will attempt to take you down.  It has been a part of the political arena since long before the western world even knew the American continent existed.

This is not a time for scapegoating and for partisan politics, and we should all let the official information be released before coming to (or jumping to) any conclusions.  It is a time for thought and prayer… a time for us all to remember that we are countrymen… and we are all neighbors.

“An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind.”  Gandhi~


2 Responses to Tucson Trajedy

  1. Mike Barkley says:

    It is time for those of us who believe the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, including the Second Amendment, should be repealed, to stand up and run for Congress. To that end I am accumulating links to web articles and
    lead comments advocating repeal at http://www.mjbarkl.com/run.htm .
    Best wishes, –Mike , Candidate for Congress

    • Deborah Mraz says:

      I do not think this is an issue of gun control. This was a loner who clearly had mental health issues. We already have strict gun control laws on the books, they simply aren’t enforced. Taking the right to keep and bear arms away from law-abiding citizens will not resolve gun crimes, all it would do is take the ability for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves. Repealing rights, any rights, of U.S. citizens is a very slippery slope. While the tragedy in Tucson is truly awful, we cannot simply have the knee-jerk reaction of taking away the right to keep and bear arms. Instead, I would suggest that our local, state and federal laws that are already on the books be enforced.

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