As it did in 2004, the last month of the presidential election increasingly resembles dispatches from the police blotter, rather than a nation of adults carefully weighing whom their commander in chief should be. Here’s but a sample of what’s going on out there:
- “Overnight, the Republican Party’s office on the courthouse square in downtown Murfreesboro was attacked. A large brick with a symbol for anarchy written on it was thrown through a window, taking out the entire glass front.”
- “Owner Believes Lexus Vandalized Due To McCain Sticker.” (Time to update these T-shirts and bumper stickers.)
- “Video: Code Pink tries to arrest Rove.”
- “Angry graffiti messages were spray-painted on the garage of Norm Coleman’s St. Paul home overnight and discovered this morning.
“‘u r a criminal resign or else,’ was scrawled in black on the side of the yellow garage in the Summit Hill neighborhood.”
- Restaurant Offers Free Pizza for [Stolen] McCain Signs.
- “Does Reebok Condone Violence Against Women?”
- “Anti-McCain vandalism hits Maryland: Democrat Displaying GOP Candidate Sign Wakes Up To Find Home, RV, Truck Covered With ‘Vote Obama’ Graffiti.”
- “NEW: Dashcam Video of Palin Protestors: ‘With the opportunity of having a national figure in town, civil disobedience is one of the best ways you can get your message across,’ she told 11 News.” (More video here.)
- “The Hill notes that police departments across the country are preparing for post-election violence.”
As Peter Wood, the author of last year’s A Bee In The Mouth, on anger in America told an interviewer:
For example: “[New Anger involves] deriding an opponent for the sheer pleasure of expressing contempt for other people….New Anger is a spectacle to be witnessed by an appreciative audience, not an attempt to win over the uncommitted….If in your anger you reduce your opponent to the status of someone unworthy or unable to engage in legitimate exchange, real politics come to an end….Whoever embraces [New Anger] is bound to find that, at least in the political realm, he has traded the possibility of real influence for the momentary satisfactions of self-expression.”
And clearly we’re seeing a lot of those momentary satisfactions of “self-expression”, even if the Victorian Gentleman would prefer not to discuss their origins and root causes.