Commentary Magazine


Posts For: January 8, 2011

More on the Tucson Shooting

Assassination as a political tool has been part of the human dynamic since societies were first founded — and, of course, a horribly effective one. One of the peculiarities of the American version of the political assassination is just how frequently in our history assassins or would-be assassins haven’t operated due to a purposeful political plan but rather as the public acting-out of a private madness. That is what seems to have been the case today.

Assassination as a political tool has been part of the human dynamic since societies were first founded — and, of course, a horribly effective one. One of the peculiarities of the American version of the political assassination is just how frequently in our history assassins or would-be assassins haven’t operated due to a purposeful political plan but rather as the public acting-out of a private madness. That is what seems to have been the case today.

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The Tucson Shooting

The unspeakable crime today in Arizona at Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’s constituent gathering outside a Safeway supermarket — which has taken the life of a nine-year-old girl, and injured others besides the congresswoman herself — was evidently perpetrated by a 22-year-old named Jared Laughner. It’s fair to say that the near-term political future of the United States will now be driven in part by the motivations of this one monster, a single evil soul in a nation of 308 million people.

The unspeakable crime today in Arizona at Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’s constituent gathering outside a Safeway supermarket — which has taken the life of a nine-year-old girl, and injured others besides the congresswoman herself — was evidently perpetrated by a 22-year-old named Jared Laughner. It’s fair to say that the near-term political future of the United States will now be driven in part by the motivations of this one monster, a single evil soul in a nation of 308 million people.

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