Editorial: We interrupt most states’ fiscal crises for the race to official gunPublished 7:02pm Sunday, February 27, 2011
Perhaps we dozed off in front of the Onion News Network, but no, this appears to be an all too-real example of America’s dangerously short attention spans.
To watch the news out of states such as Wisconsin and Ohio, most states seem beset with budget woes. Michigan certainly faces a fiscal crisis.
But in Arizona, less than two months after a gunman shot Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords point-blank in the head and killed six others, including a girl, the state Legislature there is poised to name the Colt single-action revolver the official state gun.
But to be first with a state gun, Arizona must move more quickly than Utah.
Meanwhile, across the country in Georgia, a man stood up at Republican Congressman Paul Broun’s townhall meeting and asked, “Who’s gonna shoot Obama?”
Mark Farmer, who witnessed the remark while attending from Winterville, Ga., to ask about Social Security reform, reported Broun laughed off the query without making any attempt to scorn the questioner for his hateful words about the President of the United States of America.
The Athens Banner-Herald reported Broun addressed the question thus: “The thing is, I know there’s a lot of frustration with this president. We’re going to have an election next year. Hopefully, we’ll elect somebody who’s going to be a conservative, limited-government president who will sign a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare.”
Broun’s press secretary said the reporter misquoted the congressman and released a statement three days later on Friday: “I was stunned by the question and chose not to signify it with a response. Therefore, at that moment I moved on to the next person with a question … I deeply regret that this incident happened at all. Furthermore, I condemn all statements made in sincerity or jest that threaten or suggest the use of violence against the President of the United States or any other public official. Such rhetoric cannot and will not be tolerated.”
That sounds better, but Congressman Broun did not attend Obama’s State of the Union address, though he found time to tweet, “Mr. President, you don’t believe in the Constitution. You believe in socialism.”
Further, Broun compared Obama’s proposal to create the Civilian National Service Corps to “exactly what Hitler did in Nazi Germany…”
The 2008 election sure seems far away in the rearview mirror.
Republican nominee John McCain was frequently asked about Obama on the campaign trail and was booed at his own rally for saying, “He is a decent person and a person you do not have to be scared as President of the United States. He’s a decent family man I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues, and that’s what this campaign is all about.”
It’s disheartening in 2011 to have Obama’s citizenship and legitimacy as our duly-elected commander in chief still being questioned, let alone casual comments about assassination, which keep us from addressing real problems and moving forward as a country.