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Remembering Giffords shooting, and the reaction

Remembering Giffords shooting, and the reaction

Today is the anniversary of the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and the murder of several others, including a federal judge and a young girl, by Jared Loughner.

The victims appropriately will be remembered.

Further investigation revealed that Loughner lived in a non-political paranoid delusional world, and to the extent he ever expressed political leanings, they were not “right-wing.”  Loughner eventually would be declared mentally incompetent to stand trial, and remains in psychiatric custody.

Also remembered will be the reaction from the left-blogosphere and mainstream media, which immediately and falsely attempted to connect Sarah Palin to the shootings.  My post that day, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, included ongoing news updates and copies of Tweets by left-wing bloggers:

By the next day, it was a full blown media frenzy claiming Loughner was “right-wing” and again connecting Palin to the shooting, as detailed in my post, Two Sicknesses On Display in Arizona.

The media was in full attack mode on Palin, demanding that she speak out sooner than she did, and then when she did speak out about the shootings, and used the term “blood libel,” it set off even more vigorous attacks on her.

Some on the right, such as David Frum, also used the shooting as an excuse to go after Palin.  Here are my posts on the “blood libel” issue:

I summed up my feelings in the post We Just Witnessed The Media’s Test Run To Re-Elect Barack Obama, which was read on air in full by Rush Limbaugh. (video added)

The attempt to politicize the shooting in many ways overwhelmed the memory of the victims.  And that was another tragedy.


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That poor little girl and her parents. Born on 9/11, she must have been a little beacon of hope on such a dark day. And to die as she did…it’s devastating. I remember her father being interviewed shortly after the murder and being so strong.

I guarantee there are millions of people out there who still think Palin and the right had something to do with the Giffords shooting. They’re not sure what, but they believe it must have been something. Even if it was just “setting the table” or “creating the environment” for a lone nut to shoot a Congresswoman.

Once it became known, without a doubt, that Loughner’s actions had ZERO to do with politics, I posted a few lines on facebook about how horrid it was to blame Palin for the murders. One of my “friends” immediately got on and said that while Palin was not herself responsible directly for the shootings, she bore some responsibility for “creating the environment” that allowed it to happen. The facts didn’t matter to this person. He wanted Palin to be connected in some way and he convinced himself she was.

Why is this referred to as “the Giffords shooting” and not “the John Roll shooting”? Giffords was wounded; Roll was actually killed.

    n.n in reply to RKae. | January 8, 2012 at 10:35 pm

    If I was just a bit more cynical, I would consider that the conservative judge was indeed the target. The shootings were motivated directly or incidentally by politics, but anything beyond that will have to be left in the realm of conspiracy theory, where speculation is rampant and the evidence is nearly always limited and circumstantial.

    Well, if anything, describing the massacre as the “Giffords shooting” was indeed politically motivated with clear and well defined consequences. Their extraordinary effort to implicate Palin was confirmation of their bias and ambitions.

    Then there was Obama and the Democrat’s pep rally in Tucson. If he did not condone the highly inappropriate atmosphere, then he was, in fact, a completely ineffectual leader. Either way, this incident, among many, reflects poorly on those people’s sensibilities.

    So, the contemplative cuckoo will be held responsible.

    For the rest: RIP.

How many lazy, dumb-a$$, forgetful right-wing crazies who were either too lazy or too stupid to respond to Sarah’s map the first time will this post now agitate to action?

Mission accomplished, Professor William A. Palin.

It is my belief that Jared Loughner was inspired, not by Palin’s innocuous, metaphorical map, but by the Democrats themselves. I saw a television interview, filmed sometime before the shooting, of Giffords herself, spreading the vicious Democrat propaganda that she had been “targeted” by Sarah Palin. Giffords targeted herself. It is unlikely that Loughner ever saw Palin’s map, but much more likely that he saw the televised interview where Giffords herself described herself as “targeted” and thus inspired her own would-be assassin.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Stogie. | January 8, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    It is pointless to look for behavioral motivations in a fully delusional paranoid schizophrenic. He may have been told to shoot by his toothbrush, voices within the heating vents at the Day Mart, pulsebeams sent by Ukrainian intelligence, or any number of other nonsensical causes.

Midwest Rhino | January 8, 2012 at 1:13 pm

A relative of mine was sure it was fact, months later, that the shooter was a Tea partier. This relative is not stupid, has a parent (or two) that teach at a university … but I think she only has time to hear the big media reports, or maybe some lefty blogs or outlets.

This relative is very religious … but also hated Beck because he was against “social justice”, being clueless that Beck was not against Christian giving, but against the “social justice/social gospel” movement. Those were forerunners to the ACLU and the Progressive socialist Party, and are invading traditional Christianity.

“Blog world people” tend to forget that a majority of even smarter folks still swallow a lot of news propaganda whole, as it’s fed to them by big media.

It’s a good thing the lib crazies tend to be stoned or busy crapping on police cars because if they listened to all the hate and divisiveness their empty suit of a leader spews we’d be in danger. I wonder if BO ever stops and considers how much he has divided this nation.

I remember your excellent work on this. This “story” represented the breaking-point abomination of journalism in our time in my view.

What they did to Palin was an outright attempt at existential homicide. For decades the media has been an ideological enterprise dedicated to the daily sowing of the “narrative”, and occasionally reaping the opportunistic rewards represented by the big stories. But this was new: a collective, synergistic eruption of hatred masked as journalism with the intent of destroying a human being, in such a way as never seen before. This was an entire class of sophisticated, educated and privileged guild members unconsciously unified in a drive to report and reaffirm a vicious lie, without compunction and without any fear of accountability. This was power corrupted and gone utterly mad.

What seemed obvious to me, but what I never heard mentioned …

Supposedly Palin’s map was the cause of all this.

The resulting MSM hype then resulted in this obscure map being seen a million times more than it had previously been seen … by a much, much, much larger number of supposedly impressionable right-wing crazies.

The media, which disingenuously spoke of this map’s near-mythical, sinister power, ironically had no qualms nor second thoughts about broadcasting the image of the map far and wide to an immensely larger audience than before to illustrate its stories …

… when all those other gunsight targets still remained. Many missions yet to be accomplished. No pictures of Danish cartoon drawings of Mohammed in our press for fear of inciting violence, but, curiously, the media felt the map had to be seen to be understood.

Was the media subconsciously hoping for another target to go down and strengthen the narrative? That would’ve been devastating to the conservative movement. I emphasize “subconsciously.”

Are right-wing crazies outside of Loughner too stupid to hear the dog whistle?

Are they too deaf to understand the wink and nod?

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | January 8, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Terrific post. This is why you are ‘da man’.

Thanks for the re-cap.

“Was the media subconsciously hoping for another target to go down and strengthen the narrative? That would’ve been devastating to the conservative movement. I emphasize “subconsciously.” ”

There was nothing subconscious about it. They’ve been saying it right out loud.

    raven in reply to Valerie. | January 8, 2012 at 2:56 pm

    No question. They’d be delighted if anybody who could be even tangentially linked to “right-wing” politics offed a liberal politician. They’re bloodless and bloodthirsty in this respect — anything for the cause. Look how they exploited the Wellstone funeral.

Well, lookee here. Chris Matthews explains all the lying about these murders.

It’s because if you merely tell the truth, you can’t get anything done, according to his hero Saul Alinsky.

The communists tried that in Russia, and wound up with millions dead and seventy years of tyranny and failure.

I think we in the United States can do better.

TEN YEARS AGO ON INSTAPUNDIT: Remembering who cheered when Reagan was shot.

[…] Prof. Jacobson: Remembering The Giffords Shooting, And The Reaction. And here are my thoughts from last […]

Jared Loughner has been deemed too crazy to stand trial. The carnage that man left in his shooting wake was too horrible to think about. But why is this a thread about how Sarah Palin was smeared (she was) by the left who will never be honest about things like this?

Why is this not a thread honoring those who lost their lives that horrible day? Do any of you remember any of them besides the judge and the little girl?

Yes, Gabby Giffords was shot, and seriously wounded. But she received medical care that 98% of us would not have access to (the best of the best for her type of injuries). I thank God she is doing better, and will [hopefully] someday lead a normal life, doing all the things she did before the shooting.

But there are those who won’t, and sorry Professor, those are the ones you should be memorializing. The fact that the left wing media is full of hate should be secondary to the lives lost that day.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to retire05. | January 8, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    Jared L is not fit to stand trial at this point. Open to further assessment.

    I read that shooting a Congresswoman is a Federal crime -the others are under state law.

    Further I read that Arizona can reach a verdict of insane & guilty.

    If the latter is so ,then I like that idea. Seems perfectly logical & fair.

[…] Remembering Giffords shooting, and the reaction Posted in Crime and Violence, Media, Politics | Tags: AZ […]

huskers-for-palin | January 8, 2012 at 8:15 pm

The reason why people are mentioning Palin is because there were two travesties….the victims of the shooting and the smear job on Palin to paint her as a co-conspirator. If you listened to some hit jobs, you’d think Palin was the shooter.

Tragedies come and go but opportunists are eternal. Instead of finding out the truth, the MSM and left decided to use the deaths as a means to destroy Palin (main target), Beck, Limbaugh, Tea Party, and conservatives in general.

That, in some ways, is even more of a travesty because human lives became stage props to a political agenda. Even the President used the memorial service as a campaign stop!!!!

But what’s even worse is how MANY in the media and political right knew what was going on and choosed to remain SILENT. To quote Breitbart, the RNC is WORTHLESS!!!

Now, one year later, Gabby’s hubby admits that Palin had nothing to do with the killings but chides her for the “tone” of her political rhetoric. They still can’t let it go. They have to milk it for the book sales.

Henry Hawkins | January 8, 2012 at 8:39 pm

The Detroit Lions lost their first playoff game in 2,174 years today.

THANKS Sarah Palin.
THANKS George Bush.


When will there be an investigation into the way the Sheriff refused to charge Loughner, discouraged others from pressing charges, and did nothing to insure that he was away from weapons? Loughner’s mom is/was a county employee, the Sheriff was familiar with him. Others had complained about his criminal, threatening behavior, yet nothing was done. The Sheriff spouted off after the shooting about how everybody knew Loughner was crazy, but he, the Sheriff couldn’t do anything about it. That is the Sheriff was too lazy or incompetent or didn’t want to upset anybody to do anything about it. Loughner is Arizona’s Anders Behring Breivik: We’ll call him crazy, keep him locked up forever, and never need a trial where crucial facts will come to light.