Congresswoman Gifford’s shooting: Is Palin’s Rhetoric Connected?

Twitter is abuzz with declarations that this is an act of right-wing terrorism. There’s a map attributed to Sarah Palin’s site, where Palin lists “20 House Democrats from districts we carried in 2008 who voted for the healthcare bill.”  Is it reasonable to assume a Palin connection? The list is intended as a call to action, yes, but are we sure the 22-year-old male who is reported to have shot 18 people was inspired by that? It’s been reported that the shooter is a left wing loner, Jared Lee Loughner.

While social media can be invaluable sources of information during breaking news events such as the shooting of Congresswoman Gifford, are we leading our traditional media to quicken their own responses to bad news?

We know that television news has made a point to quickly tell us what Twitter and Facebook are putting out there. Especially irrelevant comments by high-profile popular figures with high clickibilty factor.

The crosshairs that seemed to be significant to make a point on Palin’s site are all associated with names of public officials, someone on that list was coincidently shot. Should the others feel as if their lives are in danger? Regardless of the so-called intent to call to action as a positive directive, the crosshairs and targets symbolize a violent approach that in most cases begets violence! It appears there could be a viable reason to investigate the possibility of that imagery to inspire someone to do harm.

Has the Sarah Palin/ Tea Party/ right wing connection been discussed on television yet?

If the Palin connection is not talked about, that leads one to have even less confidence in the media. At the very least, points should be made to clarify or justify, that would be expected. If not, it would allow connections to be made just based on reports of Palin’s followers. 

A very telling move that seems motivated by a possible recognition of guilt happened within moments of the shooting. Palin’s rhetoric and  images of targets have been removed from her site. Could this be that Palin may also suspect there might be a connection? Just based on what we know, which is not much, the odds are, there is no connection. But, Palin’s words, symbolism and deeds associated with this tragedy should still be brought up and analyzed.

The gut feeling may be true and the collective mind of some on the worldwide web may turn out to be accurate after all. But, despite all the desire for the facts to emerge with speed when it comes to breaking news, a call to exercise our collective power with some responsibility. Unless, of course, that responsibility rests in urging our mainstream media to ask the right questions and alerting them to investigate the obvious tracks.

“Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!”hb5tq.jpg


25 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Angie
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 13:29:48

    Sarah Palin has blood on her hands today.


  2. majii
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 15:22:57

    Congressman Lewis warned Palin and McCain about this back in 2008 when he said that should something devastating happen as a result of the violent, divisive, hate-filled rhetoric that Palin was using against then-Senator Obama, they would be as guilty as the person(s) who actually pull the trigger. Although Palin has issued a statement on FB expressing her condolences, I’m not buying it. A responsible person wouldn’t have started this mess in the first place.

    I’ve also read that she is busy scrubbing her internet pages of any information that might ink her to this act of violence. Too late. Those of us who have been paying attention to her since she hit the national scene know the things she’s said/done that have implied using violence as a way to solve political problems. I grew up under segregation, and if I live to be 100, I’ll never forget Palin’s violent rhetoric that caused someone at one of her campaign events to shout, “Terrorist! Kill him!” about then-presidential candidate Obama.

    She’s too stupid to know that people like myself and Congressman Lewis who lived during one of America’s most shameful periods in history love this country as much as, or more, than she does. Congressman Lewis has served honorably for many years in Congress, and I spent 33 years teaching social studies to high school students, yet, Palin has somehow convinced a certain segment in our society that we are their enemies, including President Obama.

    I’m a Christian who reads my Bible everyday, and I’ve read nothing about Jesus instructing anyone to hate anyone else. Even though he didn’t like the Sadduccees and Pharisees, he never said that he hated them. May God have mercy on Palin’s soul for the damage that her words and actions have done to political discourse in America.


  3. Syrin
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 15:34:31

    Thank you so much for your comment, your perspective means so much to me. God also warned.. Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16, Ye shall know them by their fruits Matt 7:20

    For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, haughty, railers.. 2Tim 3:2

    They will not endure sound doctrine, they will lift up leaders to tickle their ears. 2Tim 4:3


  4. AFM
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 16:16:45


    You all that live in Wallisa can do all of us a big favor. Why don’t you all just give the bitch the silent treatment? Since people in your town seem to be afraid of her then maybe you all can unite and give her and her family the silent treatment. Include her ma and pa those 2 darling little retards that gave birth to it. You all have the power. Stop being afraid of her. She is a person who has to have attention. Stop giving it to her. Start with a few of your neighbors. Do something for the american people.


    • Syrin
      Jan 08, 2011 @ 17:15:31

      I appreciate your frustration but I have tried to do what I could. I already said I failed! It wasn’t because I was afraid of her! Instead of the media stopping her life blood from flowing, which is excessive attention, they have created a monster they can’t or won’t live without… the (clickability factor) Here in Wasilla is a sticky wickit….Its not easy for anyone to say anything about Palin. It’s become clear people are getting paid to hold their secrets about what they know
      It is true that NO one can perpetuate a lie by themselves. There is always people who know something of value. I suspect when the money runs out so will the loyality.. As her true character ..pardon the pun….continues to have holes shot threw it, that time may be close..


      • AFM
        Jan 09, 2011 @ 04:41:31

        How sad it is for people in a town to be afraid of one grifter. My heart goes out to you and your town. But remember you have it in your hands. The truth will set you free. Maybe you all will get relief if it is true she is moving to AZ. The land of the crazies. Only in AZ will they welcome the crazy. Let’s hope the Sheriff has some influence on it’s citizens.

  5. Barb
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 16:24:21

    Well, Sarah, Rush, Sean, etc. – your lunatic ravings have certainly paid off for you. Sarah, how many more of your “targets” will be hit?


  6. californiacruisin
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 17:28:41

    One thing is certain from the video Loughlin produced (see Gryphen’s blog), his entire logic system is based on syllogism, a faulty form of deductive reasoning made popular for a time by one of the ancient Greek philosophers. I forget which one it was.

    And yes, he appears to be mentally deranged, however, that makes Palin’s rhetoric all the more irresponsible. While mentally stable adults may easily interpret Palin’s “Don’t retreat. Reload.” as meaning to never give up, mentally deranged people are very likely to take it literally to mean that they should arm themselves and take out the perceived enemy. Palin appeals to many of the mentally unstable fringe element in this country, after all she has said, “I’m just like you.” I can’t really argue with that; she is just like them, mentally ill. One has only to read the comments on her FB page or over at the urinal to see the number of mentally unstable people who post there. It should be a punishable offense for public figures to incite violence the way Rush, Beck, Hannity, O’Reilly, and Palin do. The gang of five is completely unAmerican and speak often against the very principles that make this country great. End of rant (for now).


  7. Angie
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 18:21:52

    They’re putting a 9 year-old in the ground this week because of Sarah Palin.


  8. californiacruisin
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 19:03:30

    Palin, the unAmerican.


  9. TruthSeeker
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 22:00:12

    Palin: what if the shoe was on the other foot? I wonder what you, RAM, and all your fanatical followers would say if there was a map showing cross-hairs on your(Palin’s) home, RAM’s home and the homes of each one of your followers.

    Would you say that the producer of the map is blameless if something tragic happened to you or to one of the other people targeted on this map?

    Or, Palin, would you lay any blame on the producer of the cross-hairs map, for the tragedy to you or your followers?


  10. Oghma
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 23:07:04

    Teen role model and Candie’s spokesperson Bristol Palin comments on today’s tragic events:

    “F#ck u, asshole!”

    Reported->>”@MattKap20: I wonder how SarahPalinUSA would feel if someone put a crosshair on @bristol_palin ‘s new house.
    less than a minute ago via Twitter for Android


  11. Steve
    Jan 08, 2011 @ 23:41:42

    SHARE THIS EVERYWHERE: Who will rid me…’ A lesson from history. With authority comes awesome responsibility. In England, Thomas Becket, was Archbishop of Canterbury until his murder was accidentally requested the then King. Just as Palin suggested, Giffords was ‘accountable’ the king blamed Becket. And so four English knights went to Canterbury to murder him. The king was horrified by what had happened in his name, but that didn’t change the fact that he had the awesome, terrible, responsibility for what happened.


  12. Angie
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 06:03:43

    Sign the petition to indict Sarah Palin for inciting violence:


  13. Ann
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 07:30:38

    Stay strong and true to the Earth, people, let Nature and spirituality by all means help you. Talking about this is the right thing to do and remember, we all breathe the same air. The universe has a way of working with circumstance, so take a good breath, send compassion towards those hurt, and we’ll see how it plays out. Thank you all for your rapid information and bravery to speak out.


  14. Iota
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 07:55:21

    That is so funny that conservatives and the tea party are so oblivious to the fact that we are actually admitting that there is some hateful things said moron. i mean the tea party holding up signs saying i killed grandma or he is trying to take over our government please stop trying to protect your selves you contradicted yourselves you can thank fox news and all those they what oh sponsor on their show so before you conservatives and tea beggars start trying to attack others for saying its your fault look at the facts One more question can you admit to the fact that people are saying some ridiculous and angry things? There is a difference between saying something and contradicting what you say democrats might have said some things in the past but they weren’t the ones who stood on the balcony waving and holding up a tea party flag so……………..who’s the idiot?


    • californiacruisin
      Jan 09, 2011 @ 08:09:58

      Here let me give you some punctuation so that we can understand what you’re saying. Please use all that you need. ……..,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,!!!!!!!!!!!!! ??????? Thank you so much. I really do want to know what it is you’re trying to say.


  15. KyleHAmpton
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 08:58:44

    That’s the point Iota. To contradict yourself is different than speaking your mind. You can speak your mind without saying anything that someday will backfire. Like in this case the Republicans were in such a hurry to win, that they rode the anger of the tea party to congress, and now in the unfortunate events that unfolded, they won”t admit that there was some rhetoric that was heated amongst there party. They are now affiliated with the tea party


  16. Progressive Radio Fan
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 11:11:28

    It is very telling that Rep. Gabriel Giffords was only one of two of the 20 Members of Congress on Sarah Palin’s Target List that survived the election. Palin is guilty along with all the media that continue to incite violence against others. Everyone knows there are marginal people out there that can be tipped over the edge by lies and hate filled talk.


  17. Nick
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 14:12:12

    Whether or not the gunman was an ardent follower of Palin’s it is pure shortsightedness. Individuals can be smart, groups or mobs are unruley and easily influence. Fox news knows this and have taught Palin this well. Debase yourself to the lowest common demonimator and you will find some form of popularity. She simply took advantage of outdate inhumane gun laws. The fact that someone as unstable as this was able to get a gun legally is part of the problem, the gun culture and the belief that the solution to all of this society’s problems lie at the end of a gun barrel is something that may never change and is what is keeping this country back from being truly ‘advanced’
    Good luck coming back from this one!


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  19. Angie
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 15:16:55

    “Sniper targets on maps, talk of revolution and taking our country back, “Don’t retreat, instead reload,” sexually charged attacks against her critics, the omnipresent use of violence on her reality show, with all of this Sarah Palin has created a brand that is all about punishment and destruction.” -Gryphen, Immoral Minority.


  20. californiacruisin
    Jan 09, 2011 @ 19:48:02


  21. akbatwoman
    Jan 10, 2011 @ 07:40:02

    Before Representative Giffords was shot, there had been nine assassination attempts of US Congressmen. That is over a 220 year history. There are currently 435 members of congress, and have been that many for almost a century. I’m not really sure how to figure the odds, because I don’t know how many members of congress there were for the first 120 years. But if we just consider the last hundred years…………….with every congress person serving a 2 year term, I think that you would multiply 435 times 50 elections and divide by 10 (# of assassination attempts). That would mean that in the last 100 years, a US congresswoman would have about a one in 2,175 chance, or .00046 percent chance of being shot.

    If you were Gabrielle Giffords, and were one of 20 congressmen targeted by a gun cross hair, you would have a one in twenty, or .05 percent chance of being shot.

    With language like “don’t retreat, reload” as well as Representative Giffords opponent (who was supported by Palin) continuing Palin’s rhetoric a step further with his “Get on Target for Victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office by shooting a fully automatic M16 with Jesse Kelly.”, I’m affraid that I cannot believe that this was “a coincidence”.


  22. Lawrence Pratt
    Feb 10, 2011 @ 13:04:09

    Much has been bandied about since the Giffords shooting. Here’s a question I’ve not yet seen asked:

    Is the Giffords shooting just the opening salvo of a deep GOP conspiracy to recruit, exploit, and arm mentally unstable people and set them after Democratic office holders?

    If this is so, given Sarah Palin’s actions in the run-up to the 2010, what is her standing?

    Yeah, it’s pretty outrageous and coloring way outside the lines. But that’s what free thinkers do.

    Just askin’.

    You betcha.


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