Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Can Fox TV Kill You?

The same question could be asked about Michele Bachman, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, and a host of other extreme right-wing mouths who spout their invective over our public airways. Here's a recent example of Fox's Glenn Beck, courtesy of a DailyKOS video that accompanies a diary titled, By all means necessary:

Here's Michele Bachmann:
I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back. Thomas Jefferson told us, having a revolution every now and then is a good thing, and the people — we the people — are going to have to fight back hard if we’re not going to lose our country. And I think this has the potential of changing the dynamic of freedom forever in the United States.

And Rush Limbaugh:
We do, hopefully, the right thing for the sake of this country. We're the only one in charge of our affairs. We don't farm out our defense if we elect Democrats ... and riots in Denver, at the Democratic Convention will see to it we don't elect Democrats. And that's the best damn thing that can happen to this country, as far as I can think.

From Michael Savage (né Weiner)'s book, The Savage Nation:
Liberalism is unraveling the very fabric of this great nation. And the sooner you understand that liberalism is a dangerous mental disorder, the sooner you can break free from this insanity that attacks the way you live, how you conduct your business, the way you worship, the choice of SUV you drive, the food you eat, and the very freedoms you enjoy.

Glenn Beck and the rise of Fox News' militia media

Please have a look at the link above when you can.  Media Matters' Eric Boehlert has written the story I wish I could have penned about the unnerving rise in hate speech on the part of the Becks, Bachmanns, Limbaughs and Savages of talk radio and television.

The bottom line is, people like Richard Poplawski* and Jim Adkisson** are out there.  And they are listening to talk radio. They are buying Bill O'Reilly's, Sean Hannity's and Michael Savage's books.  They are watching Fox programming and making comments like this on Free Republic's Web site:
And let's face it: all the speculation about Obama being the actual Antichrist will either be confirmed or denied if someone gets off a lucky shot at the SOB.
It's not enough that we sort of know this kind of speech is out there.  It's certainly not enough to simply ignore it.  We have to find positive ways to defuse the hate, or at the very least, shine a light on it and call it out for what it is.  We must become patient educators and dedicated peacemakers.  And most of all we must be very careful not to become infected ourselves by similar vitriol, no matter our cause.

* Richard Poplawski is the 22-year-old who just recently killed three Pittsburgh policemen with an AK-47 because he was convinced the government wanted to take away his guns.
** Jim Adkisson killed two people and wounded several more last summer at a Unitarian Church in Tennessee because he was convinced that the evil liberals needed to die for the good of the country.
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