January 9, 2011

The Giffords’ shooting isn’t Sarah Palin’s fault—it’s ours. And, Sarah Palin’s.

Already, a moment of Americans coming together has turned into a shouting match: “Who’s at fault?!,” we all cry. And we all have our own ideas. But one thing is certain…

An American culture of anger and partisanship, fomented by various leaders, isn’t good for this country.

Already, many Tea Partiers and others are decrying the liberal (actually, corporate-owned) media and anyone who would point out a connection between Sarah Palin and others’ militant rhetoric and such a tragic, senseless shooting.

On the one hand, they’re absolutely right (no pun intended): Governor Palin and Tea Party activists and pundits are not crazy nor blood thirsty. Their rhetoric is just that: rhetoric.

On the other hand, it is fair to draw a connection between angry incitements to action and…action. Her twitter feed, facebook page and, yeah, that map—which Congresswoman Gifford had decried months before—foment a culture not of bipartisanship and communication but of pre-judgment and anger.

In any case, now is not a time to point fingers—except at ourselves. We all need to tone it down—breathe—take a step back, and figure out how to take many more steps forward, together.

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