In the wake of the passage of the U.S. health insurance reform bill this week, a new wave of violence threats and actions have erupted here in the States. Republican House Minority Leader, John Boehner rightly said that "Violence and threats are unacceptable. That’s not the American way."
What Rep. Boehner did not speak about is the problem that has been inciting this behavior. I suspect he does not speak about this because he so insulated in Washington that he doesn’t grasp the gap between the way politicians treat rhetoric as a war of words and the way a growing number of citizens are converting this rhetoric into violence threats and actions.
For instance, something else that Rep. Boehner says is that "Democrats just aren’t listening." The truth is that of course they’re listening… to the 49% who are happy the bill passed over the 40% who aren’t.
My guess is that in John Boehner’s ‘politician mind’ he’s not saying anything more than political spin. I believe this makes him and and his compatriots dangerously out of touch with the impact they are having. A chorus of politicians and pundits, of whom Rep. Boehner is one of the leaders, have been constantly repeating this three-part message: 1) They aren’t being listened to; 2) They aren’t the minority but the majority; and 3) This "majority" is being commandeered by an evil anti-American extremist minority that needs to be cut off at the knees.
To me, the constant repetition of this three-part message is inciting an ever-increasing frequency of threats and acts of violence. It is a manufactured consent propaganda tactic. Mr. Boehner, along with other politicians and pundits of similar mind, seem to be unaware — or unconcerned — that the impact of their ongoing message has been to increase hatred, bullying, violence threats, and violence acts.
Democrats have also done more than their fair share of political spin and manufactured consent. There’s only reason I’m calling the Republicans on the carpet about this right now: their current ways of using these tactics are sparking levels of hatred and violence that I have not seen in the U.S. since the leftist political radicals resorted to these tactics during the 1960s. It wasn’t okay when the leftists did this then and it’s not okay now when the rightists are doing it.
Transparency Disclosure for those reading this post who are not familiar with my political stance: This is not a statement against Republicans. It is a statement opposing a political tactic. As a transpartisan, the root cause solutions I advocate are different from the symptom-control strategies that either Democrats and Republican advocate. For an example of one of the solutions I advocate, go to: