In the wake of yesterday's shooting at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC, it now seems that the recent report issued by the Department of Homeland Security which warned of the threat of domestic terrorism posed by right-wing extremist groups may be right on the money.
When the report was released, right-wingers screamed bloody murder, trying to portray the report as "propaganda" aimed at vilifying supposedly legitimate "conservative" critics of President Obama. Michelle Malkin, the unhinged right-wing harpy, called it "The Obama DHS hit job on conservatives."
Well, they can whine and cry and beat their breasts indignantly, but I'll tell you, the stuff I've read and seen since President Obama won the election last year has me worried.
Check out what Rush Limbaugh said: "If al-Qaida wants to demolish the America we know and love, they’d better hurry because Obama is beating them to it."
Or check what Shep Smith, of Fox News(!) said about the emails he receives daily:
Or take a look at these comments I've seen on "conservative" blogs (and, believe me, these come from some of the more mild web sites):
- "I would say [Obama] is more on the Satan’s side then on God’s side."
- "Obama deceitfully hid his Muslim background and schooling and his agenda."
- "...it's entirely possible that, instead of signing up with blackwater, I could choose to exterminate some of America's enemies right here at home." [This one was directed straight at me!]
Remember when Republican presidential nominee John McCain tried to quell the ugly flames that were raging at his rallies? McCain saw it back then, and, to his eternal credit, tried to thwart it, even arguably to his political detriment. In fact, I think responsible Republicans (and, yes, there are a few) are very uneasy about what is happening out there.
The right-wing riposte to my concern will, of course, be that the rhetoric directed at Junior Bush and Big Dick was just as bad, just as inflammatory, as the stuff that they are spewing. But it's simply not true. There were no claims that Junior was secretly an agent of a foreign enemy. There was no conjecture that the Bush administration was deliberately trying to destroy the country. Or, if there were, such claims were limited only to obscure nooks and crannies.
And, of course, there were zero ideologically-based murders committed by anyone that could be identified with the political left.
Let's see what happens in the wake of these attacks. Will prominent Republicans like South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford or baton-twirling Newt Gingrich or cadaverous Senator Mitch McConnell call for a toning down of the rhetoric? Or will they follow the lead of Texas Governor Rick Perry, and succumb to the temptation of nailing down a rock solid political base in the hopes of engineering an electoral majority from a divided and tormented nation?