Right Thinking From The Left Coast
The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it - Henry David Thoreau

Tiller and O’Reilly

An anti-abortion lunatic has decided to take matters into his own hands:

Authorities said they had a suspect in custody Sunday afternoon in the shooting death of George Tiller, a Wichita doctor who was one of the few doctors in the nation to perform late-term abortions.

Dr. Tiller, who had long been a lightning rod for controversy over the issue of abortion and had survived a shooting more than a decade ago, was shot inside his church here on Sunday morning, the authorities said. Dr. Tiller, 67, was shot with a handgun inside the lobby of his longtime church, Reformation Lutheran Church on the city’s East Side, just after 10 a.m. (Central Time). The service had started minutes earlier.

Let’s make on thing clear before we start: the assassin is just a murderer and a terrorist.  No matter what you think about the abortion issue, shooting doctors accomplishes nothing.  Abortions will still be legal; abortions will be performed.  All he’s done is ended one more life.

That having been said, I’m a little put off by the insinuation in the usual circles that this is somehow the right wing’s fault—specifically it’s Bill O’Reilly’s fault because he profiled Tiller.  This is nothing but sliming.

When a tragedy occurs, should we put blame on those who were previously critical of the victim?  If someone shoots Dick Cheney, should we wag our fingers at the people who spoke out against torture—who pilloried him and compared him to Nazis?  If someone had tried to assassinate Bush, would we have blamed that on Michael Moore’s dumb movie?

Of course not. That would be stupid.  We blame violence on people who ... stop me if I’m going too fast ... commit violence, materially support violence or openly call for violence.  We don’t blame people who say nasty things but do not call for violence.

Something similar happened in the wake of the Oklahoma City bombing.  Many leftists, notably Bill Clinton, tried to imply that this was somehow the fault of the Right Wing and Rush Limbaugh.  They were full of shit then and they are full of shit now.  When Right Wing talking heads endorse violence, then we can blame them.  Until then, this is nothing but an attempt to silence and intimidate the opposition by linking them to extremists who happen to share a political opinion.

I’m curious what the critics think O’Reilly should have done.  If O’Reilly truly believes we are killing a million people a year in this country, is he supposed to stay quiet about it rather than inflame some lunatic’s passions?  If Bill O’Reilly believes a doctor is harming his patients and violating the law in performing abortions, should he be silent lest some terrorist be making a list?

I’ve watched the O’Reilly clips and found them extremely wanting.  O’Reilly doesn’t call for violence—he calls for an investigation by the state.  I don’t find this even half as inciting as Keith Olberman repeatedly and literally branding people as the “Worst Person in the World”.

Coates takes it even further down the rabbit hole, bringing up something really stupid Rush Limbaugh said about Sotomayor and implying ... something.

We don’t have the luxury of thinking about these bilious hate-mongers as loonies running off the lip. People are dying. And these shameless goons are cashing checks. Disgusting. I’m sick over this.

He links to the story about the racist anti-semitic piece of shit who murdered three cops in Pittsburgh because ... well, it’s not really clear why Ta-Nahisi thinks that’s relevant.  Polawski called some radio shoes; Rush Limbaugh and Bill O’Reilly have shows; and ... well, don’t you see?

I’m always impressed by how much the Left hates free speech.  From campus speech codes to the Fairness Doctrine to “hate speech” laws to linking talk show hosts to violent lunatics who (more likely than not) have never seen the show, the Libs constantly want to silence the opposition.  Look, I can’t stand listening to Rush these days.  I’ve never liked O’Reilly.  I can feel the Democrats gaining congressional seats every time Hannity opens his stupid fat mouth.  I think Ann Coulter is a disgrace.  And I could flip that over and spew the same bile at Al Franken, Robert Reich, Randi Rhodes, Janeane Garafalo and Keith Olberman.  Half the reason I remain conservative is because I can’t stomach their bullshit.

But I would never support any attempt to silence these people—not even the backdoor slithering way of linking them to violent acts they had nothing to do with.  There is one person and one person alone who bears responsibility for this terrible crime.  And it ain’t Bill O’Reilly.

Update: I also find it extremely unlikely, given the allegations, that O’Reilly was Tiller’s only critic—or the most vociferous.  To default to blaming O’Reilly immediately smacks of laziness.

Update: Great commentary here.  Whoever this murdering swine is (he has yet to be caught), he’s only strengthened the hand of his opponents.

Posted by Hal_10000 on 05/31/09 at 03:29 PM (Discuss this in the forums)

Comments


Posted by on 05/31/09 at 07:16 PM from Germany

Is there any disagreement that O’Reilly a complete fucking douchebag?  Seriously, the man is an utter asshole and watching for more than a minute or two makes me want to punch his lights out and bury him alive.  Of course, my solution is to JUST NOT WATCH HIM.

As for the murderer, I hope he is sodomized repeatedly in prison for many years.

Posted by on 05/31/09 at 07:22 PM from Germany

They had a pretty damn good description of this douchebag--wearing a Kansas State shirt, and driving a vehicle with a Kansas State vanity plate.

I can already see a bunch of KU alumni licking their chops to catch this guy.

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/31/09 at 07:28 PM from United States

They apparently caught the guy. I hope he rots.

As for O’Reilly, et al, they are mostly useless-but can anyone doubt that they do speak to a significant group of frnge kooks out there? Remember that the guy who killed those police officers in Pittsburgh was a talk-radio fanboy. And if you want to see wingnut responses, check out the Free Republic threads.

BTW, Randall Terry is another useless a-hole.

Posted by on 05/31/09 at 07:52 PM from Germany

Remember that the guy who killed those police officers in Pittsburgh was a talk-radio fanboy.

So by your logic, the media sources that the guy who killed the police officers in Oakland listened to should also be implicated.

Posted by Hal_10000 on 05/31/09 at 08:09 PM from United States

If I recall correctly, WVR, the Pittsburgh guy was a fan of conspiracy shows, not Limbaugh/Hannity.

Posted by on 05/31/09 at 08:20 PM from United States

As for O’Reilly, et al, they are mostly useless-but can anyone doubt that they do speak to a significant group of frnge kooks out there

Kooks can also be found to watch movies, listen to music and play video games. All of which have been used as an excuse for violent behavior. I say we ban them all. Hell, all blogs should be banned too. In fact, we shouldn’t even be allowed to talk to one another. Problem is people see the most fault on things they disagree with, and ignore the rest.

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/31/09 at 10:05 PM from United States

the Pittsburgh guy was a fan of conspiracy shows, not Limbaugh/Hannity.

Aren’t they pretty much the same thing these days?

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/31/09 at 10:21 PM from United States

Update: the guy’s name is Scott Roeder. Little Green Footballs has more including the fact that Roeder was also apparently a conspiracy wingnut. And kudos to them for not putting up with the crazy.

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/31/09 at 10:57 PM from United States

Shoot. The link thing wouldn’t close. Try <a href="http://tinyurl.com/lhjseh
“>this one.</a>

Posted by West Virginia Rebel on 05/31/09 at 10:58 PM from United States

Shoot. The link thing wouldn’t close. Try this one.

Posted by Sean Galbraith on 06/01/09 at 06:54 AM from Canada

What Tiller and his employees had to endure from Operation Rescue.

Posted by ? on 06/01/09 at 07:37 AM from United States

There have been 1000’s of acts of violence against physicians and starff as well as health care clinics over the last 25 years.  This includes murder, attempted murder, bombing and arson, but also vandalism, burglary and stalking, ect.  What happens when you throw gasoline on a fire.  These people, include O’Reilly are trying to bully physicians and health care works.  Funny thing is O’Reilly is always whining about people looking into his personal life.

d

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 07:45 AM from United States

Funny thing is O’Reilly is always whining about people looking into his personal life.

O’Reilly doesn’t make his money popping holes in baby skulls and sucking their brains out either.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 07:58 AM from United States

Naaah, that’s just his hobby.

Posted by Sean Galbraith on 06/01/09 at 08:38 AM from Canada

And an unintended consequence of watching his show.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 08:44 AM from United States

O’Reilly doesn’t make his money popping holes in baby skulls and sucking their brains out either.

I thought that was ACORN’s, the UAW’s, and the Black Panthers’ job.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 09:45 AM from United States

Well, without brainless people being born, how would those groups get new members?

Posted by AlexinCT on 06/01/09 at 11:47 AM from United States

Let’s make on thing clear before we start: the assassin is just a murderer and a terrorist.  No matter what you think about the abortion issue, shooting doctors accomplishes nothing.  Abortions will still be legal; abortions will be performed.  All he’s done is ended one more life.

That, and give the current nut jobs running the WH and the Homeland Security department, the “proof” they need that righwingers are all terrorists, in dire need of re-education, confinement, and at a minimum, scorn and denigration. Way to help your cause by pouring gasoline on it and lighting the whole darn thing on fire you idiot!

It never fails to amaze me that people that do dumb things like this can not see that their idiotic actions play right into the hands of the left. Now they will argue they should ban guns, spend evenmore on abortion porgrams, and call everyone that doesn’t agree with them a terrorist (and use this incident as their proof).

What a maroon.

Posted by Sean Galbraith on 06/01/09 at 12:18 PM from Canada

I’m going to guess this guy goes for the insanity defence. Just a hunch. :-)

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 12:29 PM from United States

That, and give the current nut jobs running the WH and the Homeland Security department, the “proof” they need that righwingers are all terrorists, in dire need of re-education, confinement, and at a minimum, scorn and denigration.

Excellent point. We’ve already seen the groundwork being laid for that with the release of the domestic terrorist report. BTW-I think it’s funny that only Americans can be called terrorists. Acts by foreign nationals are what, man-made disasters?

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 12:40 PM from United States

Did Oreilly actually call for violence against this guy? 

If not then attempting to blame him for the murder is completely unfair.

I’m not a fan of Bill, nor do I share his staunch opposition to abortion.  However I feel he should be absolutely free to criticize abortion in accordance with his own beliefs, in any way he chooses (excluding of course any specific references to violence against individuals).  And attempting to equate him with the actual killer is a bold attempt to silence a political opponent, which I can’t get behind. 

For instance, many liberals are strongly opposed to americas actions in the middle east, correct?  Would it then be fair to blame them for the actions of terrorists who cite similar reasons when they launch attacks against us?  Who knows, those commentaries could have been a motivating factor. 

It would be a ridiculous claim in either instance.

On a side note: I’m really glad that no one of any consequence has come out to defend the murderer.  The comparison will still be made that evangelicals in the US are fundamentally no different than radical muslims who support acts of terrorism, there’s no helping that.  But they’ve done well distancing themselves from this nut.

Posted by AlexinCT on 06/01/09 at 12:59 PM from United States

If not then attempting to blame him for the murder is completely unfair.

Like that would stop them from accusing him of being an accomplice anyway. Please, we live in a society that blames TV and video games for idiots that commit crimes, instead of just admitting that these idiots are a byproduct of a society that has destroyed the very core values that used to make people functioning citizens.

There is political capital to be scored against the right, and especially against O’Reilly that has been a thorn in the side of leftists, and they want their pound of flesh.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 02:15 PM from United States

Considering abortion is one of the most divisive moral and political subjects in the U.S., Newsy does a good job here of providing insightful perspectives from different sides on this recent controversial and tragic event.

I wish those on both sides of this issue could reach some common ground, but like some things in life, it doesn’t look like this will happen for quite some time.

Posted by salinger on 06/01/09 at 03:08 PM from United States

For instance, many liberals are strongly opposed to americas actions in the middle east, correct?  Would it then be fair to blame them for the actions of terrorists who cite similar reasons when they launch attacks against us?  Who knows, those commentaries could have been a motivating factor. 

It would be a ridiculous claim in either instance.

Yeah - that would be so unfair.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 03:39 PM from United States

I wish those on both sides of this issue could reach some common ground, but like some things in life, it doesn’t look like this will happen for quite some time.

Diametrically opposed worldviews aren’t likely to meet, ever…

Side A:  It’s a human life with a soul and god demands it be born

Side B: It’s a mass of tissue that I want removed before it gets any larger

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 03:48 PM from United States

Diametrically opposed worldviews aren’t likely to meet, ever…

Side A:  It’s a human life with a soul and god demands it be born

Side B: It’s a mass of tissue that I want removed before it gets any larger

Yeah, I don’t see how compromise is really possible on that one.  There are a few issues (ie, the death penalty) where compromise is unlikely.

Posted by on 06/01/09 at 09:33 PM from United States

Side A:  It’s a human life with a soul and god demands it be born
Side B: It’s a mass of tissue that I want removed before it gets any larger

There’s a line somehwere.  Very few people think that when a healthy woman, nine months into a pregnancy, goes into labor she should be able to head to the emergency room and say “Nahhh doc, I changed my mind, abort the thing.” Unless you are ok with that scenario, then you must be ok with some restrictions on abortion.  I’m not sure where the line should be drawn, but I think abortion after some point in pregancy should be barred. 

For some it has become so wrapped up in the rhetoric that is more like a sacrament, the rest of us, it is definately a thorny issue.

Posted by HARLEY on 06/02/09 at 04:52 AM from United States

There’s a line somehwere.  Very few people think that when a healthy woman, nine months into a pregnancy, goes into labor she should be able to head to the emergency room and say “Nahhh doc, I changed my mind, abort the thing.” Unless you are ok with that scenario, then you must be ok with some restrictions on abortion.  I’m not sure where the line should be drawn, but I think abortion after some point in pregancy should be barred.

after finding my self, wandering from one side of this issue to the other and in conflict with my agnostic and libertarian beliefs, i cam e to the conclusion that a pregnancy should not be terminated after the 1st trimester. If a woman cant make her mind up by then, she has some serious issues.
also id be ok with the Morning after pill being avalbe over teh counter.

Posted by on 06/02/09 at 07:13 AM from United Kingdom

Hehehehe - good spot Salinger....I agree completely.

Posted by Sean Galbraith on 06/02/09 at 07:21 AM from Canada

Having read some of the horror stories of women who had to chose a third trimester abortion, I am glad there are places that will still help these women.

Posted by Sean Galbraith on 06/08/09 at 09:42 AM from Canada

Roeder says more events like this are planned so long as abortion remains legal.

Would this not be a “ticking time bomb” scenario that would justify torturing the guy (in the minds of those who support such methods)?

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