A British-American bluestocking living in the UK writes about politics, pop culture, and emerging new paradigms as they unfold on both sides of the Atlantic. (New content.)

Monday, 10 January 2011

Why Are Americans Talking Politics---In the Midst of a National Tragedy?

Vigil for the Fallen in Arizona
I am stunned at the response to the shooting of  Congresswoman Giffords of Arizona and the citizens of America who were shot in that Safeway parking lot yesterday. They were shot by a young man named Jared Loughner who very apparently was mentally ill. He left garbled messages on the internet and cited the Communist Manifesto. In a safe in his house they found a note that said, "My assassination" and "Giffords". Loughner was formally charged with the attempted assassination of a Congress member, on  two counts of killing an employee of the federal government, and  on two more counts of attempting to kill a federal employee.

Instead of standing in sympathy and unification against this horrible tragedy, the Democrats wasted no time in blaming the Republicans and the Tea Party. They began the huge spin. It was Sarah Palin's fault.  What? Why?  Mrs Gifford was a Democrat. But the Republicans contended that she was a "moderate" and a supporter of the second amendment (right to bear arms) so doesn't this make her a target for the left?. I was absolutely appalled. When the planes hit the towers on 9-11,  America stood together as a nation. Instead, the Democrats began to say that it was Mrs Giffords stance on health care reform (she was for it) made her a target for this crazed teenager to shoot her.

This teenager couldn't even spell much less care about health care or any other issue of note. He was not a politically involved student (according to those he knew.)  He abused drugs. His rambling notes revealed someone who had more than a few bolts loose.  I doubt that he understood or cared what health reform or anything else was. His quotes He had a history of causing trouble in school. His classmates knew that he was a bit unhinged and his parents had been notified of his bizarre behaviour. Who dropped the ball?

Despite this, the left has made Jared Loughner into a poster boy for all the crazy, fringe and lunatic right-wingers. The bodies were still warm, and the tweets were flying. It was insanity in its highest form. He talked about a "parrot" on his shoulder and asking if people could "see" the parrot. He was hallucinating or suffering from some form of psychosis.He said that the government was controlling his mind with grammar. (Apparently, the American government needs some lessons because if he is the patsy for grammatical mind control, they aren't getting the syntax right. Loughner's grammar was appalling.)

He posted videos of himself burning flags (isn't that usually a leftist action?) He talked about the Constitution (oh, wait, isn't that a right-wing action?)  Insanity!

Let's get real here.

The following are e-mails from Lynda Sorensen (Age 52) who was one of Jared Loughner's classmates at the community college he attended this summer:

June 1, 2010: "One day down and nineteen to go. We do have one student in the class who was disruptive today, I'm not certain yet if he was on drugs (as one person surmised) or disturbed. He scares me a bit. The teacher tried to throw him out and he refused to go, so I talked to the teacher afterward. Hopefully he will be out of class very soon, and not come back with an automatic weapon." 
June 10, 2010 : ". . . Class isn't dull as we have a seriously disturbed student in the class, and they are trying to figure out how to get rid of him before he does something bad, but on the other hand, until he does something bad, you can't do anything about him. Needless to say, I sit by the door."
June 14, 2010: "There was never a time when he was in class that he was not disruptive, and he scared me. He frightened the daylights out of me. I kept saying to people, 'I'm afraid he's going to come into the class with a gun." 

The community college kicked him out this past autumn and told that he had to get a mental health clearance to get back into school. 

And in the midst of all this is the tragedy of  Christina Green, the little girl, born on 9-11 who had come to meet the Congresswoman because she wanted to meet a "politician" as she had just been elected to student council of her class. She was gunned down, too. And there was Gabe Zimmerman, aide to the Congressman was just about to be married. And there was Dorwan and Mavy Stoddard who had grown up as children in Tuscon, moved away married other people, raised families and then reunited 15 years ago. They were known for their generosity and were always helping someone. When the shots rang out, Dorwan shielded Mavy with his body. Mavy was still stood in both legs and Mavy took the brutal death shot. He died shielding the love of his life. These are people who cared, who laughed, who loved and they are being shoved aside for back-stabbing politcial rhetoric. It's shameful.

And these real people...with families....were gunned down by a mentally disturbed man.  He wasn't a Democrat, he wasn't a Republican, or a Tea Partier or a Libertarian or a Socialist or a Communist. The deluded man couldn't parse a sentence that was intelligible.

He was psychotic.

We need to understand that and move beyond the rhetoric of division and get to the point of it all...why on earth are people like this allowed to roam around without attention?  Why are the mentally disturbed ignored so that they can gun down people in cold blood? How can people like this be allowed to attend a community college in the first place? Why was this man not stopped before this tragedy occurred?

When we answer that question...maybe we can get to the point of this tragedy and stop the name-calling and the finger-pointing that is undermining the ability to move forward, support these grieving families and repair the nation. 

Left and right, left and right....conquer and divide. That agenda is moving forward. 

Can anyone not see this? It's the "parrot" on all our shoulders.

It isn't about politics, it's about mental instability in a young man who is a product of a society that isn't watching its children. This is simply a testament to the insanity in all of us.

Let's get our priorities straight, stop this travesty of "you did it" and support those that have lost their loved ones. The back-biting has no place in this American horror story.