Republican Politicians: Fear-mongering & Responsibility

Are Republican Elected Officials Backing the Violent Thugs?
By Howie Klein

[…]  But the most calamitous moment in the meeting came when someone in the audience asked about fear mongering by Hate Talkers like Glenn Beck. “What I would suggest,” said Inglis, “is turn that television off when he comes on.” The place exploded in rage and many got up and left — in effect, turning off Inglis, not Beck. Watch the video of an uncomfortable conservative Republican congressman facing his fascist base, reaping what his party has sown. Later Inglis talked with a local blogger who asked him if people exploded because he had used the word “fear-mongering” in relation to Beck:

“Probably,” Inglis said. “That’s what he does. That’s what Glenn Beck is all about. And Lou Dobbs. I’ve had the misfortune of listening to those shows a couple of times… I don’t listen often to Glenn Beck, but when I have, I’ve come away just so disappointed with the negativity… the ‘We’ve just gone to pot as a country,’ and ‘All is lost’ and ‘There is no hope.’ It’s not consistent with the America that I know. The America I know was founded by people who took tiny boats across a big ocean, and pushed west in tiny wagons, and landed on the moon. That’s the America I heard on the streets of Boiling Springs… The America that Glenn Beck seems to see is a place where we all should be fearful, thinking that our best days are behind us. It sure does sell soap, but it sure does a disservice to America… If Walter Cronkite said something like Glenn Beck said recently on the air, about the president being a racist, Cronkite would’ve been fired on the spot. But I guess the executives of these cable news shows are more enamored with the profits that come from selling this negative message than they are with undermining the faith of people in this wonderful constitutional republic.”

[…] This morning Mike Lux, author of my favorite book of this summer, The Progressive Revolution posted a question for GOP leaders at Open Left: What would it take for you to condemn the hatefulness?

Glenn Beck has said Barack Obama hates white people, and jokes about assassinating the Speaker of the House. Rush Limbaugh makes repeated and extended comparisons between Obama and Hitler. Mobs hang a congressman in effigy and physically attack people at a town hall meeting.Members of Congress have death threats issued against them, while other Members make jokes about lynching their colleagues.

With all of this hateful and violent rhetoric going on, I haven’t seen one Republican leader asking for people to cool their rhetoric, or heard them condemn any of these tactics. My question for Republican party, and their allies at conservative media companies that employ the kind of people making these remarks: what exactly would have to be said for you to distance yourself from these people? How far would someone have to go before you got uncomfortable with it? What would have to said before Fox News considered firing someone?

If Glenn Beck actually directly called for the assassination of someone, would it bother you guys? If Rush Limbaugh just screamed a racial insult referring to the President of the United States into his microphone, would it make you pause at all? If Lou Dobbs went so far as to call for the murder of random Hispanics in the street, would CNN consider firing him? If Michael Savage actually encouraged a caller to his show to go blow up a federal building like Timothy McVeigh did, would any Republicans suggest he pull his rhetoric back a bit?

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