After the horrific Tucson shootings last weekend, future U.S. president Sarah Palin retreated to her prayer cave and prayed for guidance. Today, she's announced her findings: The real tragedy here is "journalists and pundits" who "manufacture a blood libel."
Whichever insufficiently supervised functionary writes Palin's Facebook screeds posted a humongous screed from her this morning, on Facebook. It was a forthright apology for Palin's role in depicting Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' district in gun sights.
Kidding! Haha, a joke. Of course it's actually a poorly edited, not entirely logical, buzzword-laden attempt to score political points.
Like many, I've spent the past few days reflecting on what happened and praying for guidance. After this shocking tragedy, I listened at first puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness, to the irresponsible statements from people attempting to apportion blame for this terrible event.
Particularly those who tried to apportion blame onto Sarah Palin.
Vigorous and spirited public debates during elections are among our most cherished traditions. And after the election, we shake hands and get back to work, and often both sides find common ground back in D.C. and elsewhere. If you don't like a person's vision for the country, you're free to debate that vision. If you don't like their ideas, you're free to propose better ideas. But, especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn. That is reprehensible.
Maureen O'Connor pointed out that "blood libel" actually "refers to a false accusation or claim that religious minorities, almost always Jews, murder children to use their blood in certain aspects of their religious rituals and holidays." Is Sarah Palin accusing the liberal media of murdering Jew babies? Where does the ADL stand on this? "Blood libel" is the new "refudiate!"
There are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently apolitical criminal. And they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. But when was it less heated? Back in those "calm days" when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols? In an ideal world all discourse would be civil and all disagreements cordial. But our Founding Fathers knew they weren't designing a system for perfect men and women. If men and women were angels, there would be no need for government. Our Founders' genius was to design a system that helped settle the inevitable conflicts caused by our imperfect passions in civil ways. So, we must condemn violence if our Republic is to endure.
As I said while campaigning for others last March in Arizona during a very heated primary race, "We know violence isn't the answer. When we ‘take up our arms', we're talking about our vote."
There you have it: Sarah Palin is not to blame. Jew baby-killing pundits are. That's leadership. [Photo via Getty]