An odd man has shot and killed several people and severely injured a legislator of our United States government. The corporate-run media’s narrative is that the latest round of semi and/or outright violent rhetoric caused this man to shoot Representative Giffords and others that saturday in January. The connections are tenuous and depending on the source, one can make a convincing argument one way or the other. We could spend all day trying to decipher this and whether Mr. Loughner was a lefty or righty, which does not interest me as I am unconvinced that his actions were political to begin with. This is unimportant. It is the media’s narrative, so it is the way our culture is digesting it. Now that this narrative has survived, our government is using this reasoning to take steps to separate itself even more than it already is from the people who “elect” them.
We can talk all day about how assassinations and their attempts are not alien to U.S. culture despite this “new wave” of rhetoric. We can even debate whether the rhetoric is in fact any different than American politicians have always dished out. Hell, our politicians used to duel each other with guns and shit. I think the reason for the current panic over the events with Mr. Loughner is that America is full of revolutionary energy these days, and the power brokers of the status quo have noticed and are frightened. They can and will use this manufactured situation to enforce strategies to force passivity as I described in my last post about this incident. We are now seeing an event blamed on rhetoric used by those in power; and in the wake of its aftermath the forcing of moderation in our discourse, which in turn cuts off those with legitimate arguments about the status quo and paints them with Mr. Loughner’s brush. Now, a second symptom of this is being instituted: the further entrenching of powered classes and the separating of themselves from the rest of us.
Laws proposing plexiglas walls around congress, and a myriad of reactionary legislation that simply protects against the most recent event by a person who most likely would have done it regardless of these laws. This is standard procedure in our country as anyone who travels by plane will know about taking their shoes off, having porno scanners look into their underwear, and ounce limits for any liquids carried on the plane. Some of the proposals include making it illegal to have a firearm within 1000 feet of a federal official and some vague legislation specifically making Palin’s bullseye map illegal. Do we really think that Mr. Loughner would have called off his plans had he known that he wasn’t allowed to take his gun within 1000 feet of Representative Giffords? Or if Ms. Palin’s infamous map hadn’t been published that members of congress would never be targeted by crazy people?
What very well could have addressed the situation before Mr. Loughner acted was schools that had been designed to teach rather than provide cheap day-care that encourage kids to drop-out and do anything besides teach. Maybe schools could have recognized this young man’s issues and addressed them instead of kicking him out or passing him off as someone else’s problem. Jared might have been able to treat his depression and aggression if we had a humane health-care system that wasn’t designed to profit but rather treat our people simply because it is the right thing to do. If we had a government that was made up of workers or those with the least power instead of plutocrats that are busier perpetrating (profitable) crimes across the globe than addressing the multitudinous needs of those they rule, then perhaps they wouldn’t have any “violent rhetoric” to worry about or utter.
The bottom line is that this event will be used to further separate our legislators from those they legislate for. Events such as the one Representative Giffords was a party to will become rarer. Public opinion will be less and less represented in the actions of our government. Town hall meetings and public events will (when they even occur) look more and more like military parades as security teams assess threats and politicians are quickly jumping into a rising chopper lest any of those possibly dangerous constituents get too close.
As a side note, Sunday marked the 20th year of our ongoing war against the tiny country of Iraq.