Saturday, February 9, 2013

Sounds of Silence

From the media coverage of the ex-LA cop Christopher Dorner who has gone on a killing rampage to avenge his firing from the police department four years ago we've learned much about Dorner. One thing, though, that has received scant attention in the major media are his ideological affinities as revealed in his "manifesto." This seems odd because the barrel of Jared Loughner's gun had barely cooled before the media was ascribing his shooting of Gabriel Giffords and others to "right-wing hate."

Despite the complete and utter lack of any evidence, folks on the left tried with all the creativity they could muster to connect these crimes to Sarah Palin's ad showing congressional districts in her electoral crosshairs, to the Tea Party, and to sundry other offenders in talk radio. Fifteen years earlier when Tim McVeigh bombed the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City killing 168 people the left blamed Rush Limbaugh's passionate rhetoric for emboldening McVeigh even though there was no evidence that McVeigh ever heard of Rush Limbaugh.

These attempts to tarnish conservatives and conservatism by associating the crimes of violent lunatics with conservative activism were as mindless as they were tendentious. After all, almost all of the presidential assassins in our history, plus Unabomber Ted Kazsinski, plus Floyd Lee Corker - the guy who tried to shoot employees of the Family Research Council because the FRC opposed Gay Marriage - and anyone else who plotted, schemed, and/or carried out multiple murders and who could also be shown to have had any ideological leanings at all, was someone who'd been influenced by the left.

The same is true of Dorner. His manifesto reveals him to be a man whose sympathies lie with liberal/progressive causes. I don't mean to suggest that liberalism is somehow responsible for Dorner's rage. It may be, but I don't know.

What I am confident of, though, is that if he'd been found to have had Tea Party websites bookmarked on his computer we'd be reading today about how conservatives are creating a climate of "hate and violence" in the country and how Tea Party dissatisfaction with Mr. Obama's policies and Rush Limbaugh's rhetoric are triggering horrific outbursts from emotionally unstable and violent people like Mr. Dorner. And the left would be screaming at us to stop the right-wing madness.

As it is, we'll probably continue to hear nothing much at all from the major media about Mr. Dorner's politics because like so many of his murderous predecessors his political proclivities are too inconvenient to bear publicizing. It's only important, you understand, that the public be made aware of such things when the criminals can, with sufficiently imaginative mental gymnastics, be made to appear to have been influenced by conservatives.