Glenn Beck, classy as always, has released an open letter to… everyone, basically, in response to the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and 20 others in Tucson, Arizona. The basic gist is: Don’t look at me! The subtext is: Look at liberals.
This wasn’t his first response to the tragedy. Earlier today, Beck read the very serious e-mail he wrote to one of the victims. I refer, of course, to Sarah Palin, who has been relentlessly attacked by people armed with criticism of her words and actions. Beck told her to stay strong, and be careful:
“Sarah, as you know, peace is always the answer. I know you’re feeling the same heat — if not much more — on this.
I want you to know you have my support. But please look into protection for your family. An attempt on you could bring the republic down.
Please, call Gavin de Becker in Los Angeles. He is the guy that protects me. They are, bar none, the best. There are nut jobs on all sides.”
Right. Of course. Beck’s job is to remind his listeners that he and his friends are the ones in danger — making his audience fearful for his safety is one of the creepier and more effective bits of Beck’s schtick — from jackbooted progressive communazis.
Palin supposedly responded with the following word-jumble: “I hate violence. I hate war. Our children will not have peace if politicos just capitalize on this to succeed in portraying anyone as inciting terror and violence. Thanks for all you do to send the message of truth and love and God as the answer.”
Please remember those inspiring word the next time you think about capitalizing on a tragedy by succeeding in portraying anyone as inciting terror or violence. For the children.
One of Beck’s staffers then sat down to compose the aforementioned open letter, which points out Jared Loughner “cited the Communist Manifesto as one of his favorite books” but fails to mention the Ayn Rand book. While pretending he’s engaging in the classic Broderian “both sides have their extremes and both sides’ extremes are bad” criticism, Beck is actually just repeating his usual thesis that the Left is attempting to destroy the nation.
Beck “challenges” everyone to agree with the following:
I denounce violence, regardless of ideological motivation.
I denounce anyone, from the Left, the Right or middle, who believes physical violence is the answer to whatever they feel is wrong with our country.
I denounce those who wish to tear down our system and rebuild it in their own image, whatever that image may be.
I denounce those from the Left, the Right or middle, who call for riots and violence as an opportunity to bring down and reconstruct our system.
I denounce violent threats and calls for the destruction of our system – regardless of their underlying ideology – whether they come from the Hutaree Militia or Frances Fox Piven.
I hold those responsible for the violence, responsible for the violence. I denounce those who attempt to blame political opponents for the acts of madmen.
I denounce those from the Left, the Right or middle that sees violence as a viable alternative to our long established system of change made within the constraints of our constitutional Republic.
Half of these aren’t about violence at all — they’re about people who want to “bring down” or “tear down” our “system,” and replace it with something else. Glenn Beck’s entire thesis is that… Barack Obama and his radical friends are trying to tear down our system and replace it with something else. (Frances Fox Piven you may not know — she’s an activist and CUNY professor who wrote a piece for The Nation in 1966 that Glenn Beck discovered and turned into another tentacle of the vast progressive conspiracy.)
In the wake of horrific violence in Arizona, Glenn Beck is consoling Sarah Palin and telling his viewers to denounce progressives.
Alex Pareene writes about politics for Salon and is the author of "The Rude Guide to Mitt." Email him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @pareeneMore Alex Pareene.