Saturday, March 27, 2010

Right-Wing Violence

A couple of weeks ago, a writer for a British magazine interviewed me about the potential of right-wing assassination attempts against President Obama. He had read a piece I wrote for Global Comment about the rise of right-wing terrorism in the U.S.

I told him that I thought a successful assassination of Obama was highly unlikely because of the Secret Service's effectiveness. Rather, I said that localized political murders seemed more plausible. Members of Congress are quite vulnerable, as are local politicians, judges, etc. And of course, there's always the possibility of a crazy right-winger just seeing a Democrat and losing it.

Such as what happened in Tennessee the other day. Near Nashville, a man picked up his 10 year old daughter from school and was driving home when he was rammed by a crazed minivan driver. Why did the guy lose it? The car had an Obama bumper sticker. No was was hurt and police charged the lunatic with reckless endangerment, but this is precisely the kind of localized violence right-wing radio and now even Republican congressional leaders have legitimized. It's only a matter of time before someone dies.