Phil Montag, a former Nebraska Democratic party official (since fired) had these kind words to say after Congressmen Steve Scalise was shot: "I hate this motherf..... I'm f...... glad he got shot. I'm glad he got shot. I'm not going to f...... say that in public. I wish he was f...... dead."
Comedian Marcella Arguello said this: "If a few old ass conservative white men have to die in order to get the gun control issue discussed then I'm willing to take that risk."
Regarding the Senate Republicans' healthcare plan, Elizabeth Warren said: "These cuts are blood money. People will die. Let's be very clear - Senate Republicans are paying for tax cuts for the wealthy with American lives."
Not to be outdone, Hillary Clinton said this: "Forget death panels. If Republicans pass this bill they're the death party." I have to say a word or two here. Remember how Sarah Palin was mocked and laughed at for suggesting that Obamacare would lead to rationing; and with rationing comes decisions about who gets treatment and who does not - in some cases, who lives and who dies. But, Elizabeth Warren can say the Republican plan will kill people; Hillary Clinton can say it - and no outcry. Nothing. Crickets.
Here is the latest from Johnny Depp, to an approving audience in Glastonbury, UK: "When was the last time an actor assassinated a President?" So clever. I do hope that the Secret Service pays him a visit.
Chelsey Gentry-Tipton is the Democratic Black Caucus Chairwoman in Nebraska. She had this to say about the shooting of Steve Scalise and others: "The very people that push NRA legislation in efforts to pad their pockets with complete disregard for human life. Yeah, having a hard time feeling bad for them."
One writer for the Huffington Post, Jesse Benn, said this: "What's more harmful: putting millions already on the margins more at risk via draconian policies, or shooting a racist lawmaker in the hip?" Here is what is more harmful: your inability to view those who hold differing views as being human beings. The same applies to all the others quoted above.
Here is a real hater - Professor Johnny Williams of Trinity College in Connecticut: "It is past time for the racially oppressed to do what people who believe themselves to be 'white' will not do, put end to the vectors of their destructive mythology of whiteness and their white supremacy system #let them f...... die" "The time is now to confront these inhuman a..holes and end this now."
Today's Los Angeles Times reports on a new Pew Research poll concerning how Democrats and Republicans feel about one another. It is not a pretty picture. 47% of Democrats say Republicans make them angry, but 46% of Republicans say the same thing about Democrats. No difference between the parties there. But there was a very interesting difference: 52% of Republicans say that Democrats are more closed-minded than other Americans. But a whopping 70% of Democrats say Republicans are more closed-minded than other Americans. Do I believe that Republicans are more closed-minded than Democrats? Of course not. Given the above quotes, and once again given what happened to me personally (discussed in last summer's post entitled "A Personal Tale of Intolerance"), I could certainly make the case that Democrats are more closed-minded.
In fact, it is the rare case where I encounter a liberal Democrat who tells me that they read or listen to opposing views. I am not alone in expressing the concern that we seem to be in a civil war in this country - albeit a mostly non-violent one. There are an increasing number of commentators who are now expressing the same sentiment. I am seeing an increasing number of articles discussing what might be done to increase tolerance for divergent views, especially on college campuses. For now, however, one commentator said it best about colleges - colleges provide tremendous diversity of race, religion and ethnic background, so long as everyone thinks alike.
I have previously discussed that I believe that a core problem is that Democrats and Republicans no longer share the same fundamental values. That certainly makes it easier to disrespect those with whom you disagree. It is time - past time - to bring back the fundamentals to our schools. Requiring recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance daily. Teaching civics. Teaching how our governing document - the Constitution - works, and why it is the greatest governing document ever written. And teaching why allowing the expression of many viewpoints is one of our greatest freedoms, a freedom that we have because the First Amendment to the Constitution protects that right.