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January 26
1990 - "Duplicates" premieres at L.A. Phil; concerto by CalArts Music School dean Mel Powell wins Pulitzer Prize [story]
Mel Powell


Commentary by Betty Arenson
| Thursday, Jun 29, 2017

Two weeks ago I wrote a commentary addressing hate speech and the attempted murder of U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise. The content gave several examples of the undeniably and perilously provocative words and fear-mongering from celebrities and politicians who are in overdrive since Trump’s inauguration. The words and actions can, perhaps arguably, be threaded directly to Scalise’s attempted murder.

In response to the Scalise shooting, there was a lot of hand-wringing, terror, disgust and chatter about “let’s be sure this doesn’t happen again … the parties have to have more discussion, more respect for each other,” etc.

This happening echoed the shooting of former Arizona Rep. Gabby Giffords in 2011.

The shootings were alike in that the goal was to kill, but they differed as to incitement and motive.

Giffords’ shooter, Jared Loughner, was a drug and alcohol abuser who had been kicked out of school and later diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic. Reportedly, he personally disliked Giffords and had special contempt against women holding power.

Scalise’s would-be murderer, James Hodgkinson, had his own history of punching a woman in the face, but he was running free. He professed hating “the rich,” and his motive was unambiguously to kill Republicans. A Virginia baseball field complete with Republicans practicing for an annual game on June 14 was easy pickings.

Democrats tried to push Giffords’ shooting specifically onto former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, but the falsity was debunked. Today Sarah Palin is suing The New York Times, which had the impudence and bad judgment recently to publish an editorial linking Palin to the Giffords’ shooting.

Considering the two events, decent people would think there’d be a halt with a reflective moment. Nope — didn’t happen for some, and that “some” is too many.

Dangerously aggressive words came mostly in May with the disclosure of the House of Representatives’ first healthcare bill draft.

It was hysterical verbal chaos about millions of people dying if Obamacare was not maintained. The idioms continue now with the Senate version of the bill, and we’re back to the main point: hate speech and its consequences.

Attempted murders be damned, the left’s hatred and hysteria remain.

Johnny Depp, at best a totally disheveled physical and mental being who masters slurred-nonsensical words into microphones, recently uttered: “I’m not insinuating anything – by the way, this will be in the press, and it will be horrible – but when was the last time an actor assassinated a president?” And: “I want to clarify, I am not an actor. I lie for a living. However, it has been a while, and maybe it is time.”

Depp is past bizarre. He’s a well-paid film actor but says he’s not and actor while admitting he lies for a living.

Depp’s idiocy aside, there are people who listen to him, and in this climate, shooting the president of the United States is never a joke.

Next up is a (now former) Nebraska Democratic Party official named Phil Montag.

Montag attended a meeting with Nebraska’s Democratic Black Caucus to support Chairwoman Chelsey Gentry-Tipton, who was getting heat for her online post: “Watching the congressman crying on live TV abt the trauma they experienced. Y is this so funny tho?” Then: “The very people that push pro-NRA legislation in efforts to pad their pockets with complete disregard for human life. Yeah, having a hard time feeling bad for them.”

At the meeting, Montag expressed his hate for Scalise because it was Scalise’s job to “convince Republicans to (expletive) kick people off (expletive) health care.”

He continued: “I’m glad he got shot. I’m not going to (expletive) say that in public. … I wish he was (expletive) dead.”

The conversation was taped by Gentry-Tipton’s friend, Destin Madison. Montag retreated when told the tape would go public.

To the Omaha World-Herald he claimed to be “horrified” by the shooting and all gun violence. He “absolutely” didn’t wish for Scalise’s death: “I did not call for the congressman’s death,” claiming his words were taken out of context.

Conservative Ted Nugent is not to be excused for his vile, Secret Service investigation-worthy comments about Barack Obama and guns in 2007. He said (2012): “We need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November,” referencing the upcoming election.

After Scalise’s event, Nugent accepted responsibility for his inflammatory language, said he has stopped it and urged friends, enemies and the left to do the same.

He needs to be held to his words, as do others. We can hope the left will quell their dangerous language, as well.

 

Betty Arenson is a Valencia resident who believes in the Constitution in its entirety and that laws should be upheld and apply to everyone equally.

 

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3 Comments

  1. Brown says:

    Your views support the same hate you condemn. The sad truth is that everyone in the country thinks exactly alike, some call themselves Republicans and some Democrats. Both sides are full of apathetic, narcissistic people that can’t see beyond their own experience. We are in trouble indeed….

  2. S Cgal says:

    Betty always fails to mention the biggest culprit derTrump himself. He bragged he could shoot someone in broad daylight and nothing would happen to him. He incited his supporters to beat up protesters who legally showed up at his pre-election rallies. He voiced support and offered financial assistance to those arrested for assaulting those protesting himv (of course never followed up on). His distorted sense of power and oversized ego prompted him to claim he would side step diplomacy and simply “bomb the hell out of people, including non-combatants (I.e., men, women and children) caught in the cross hairs of civil warfare/insurgency. He is on record stating he would like to “punch him in the face” when referring to yet another person legally protesting at his rally. The point is, he continues to provoke, promote and incite violence by playing to his base. THIS IS NOT NORMAL. Why don’t YOU write about that, why don’t you call his unacceptable and unstable behavior out? The man is an embarrassment and unfit for office. Your SILENCE is tacit approval, you must be so proud.

  3. Denny NNWofLA says:

    Damn those pesky amendments!
    The first will get you in trouble.
    The second will get you dead-
    left, right and in between.

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