April 19, 2010

WHY BILL CLINTON NEEDS TO stop talking about Oklahoma City.

The Terrorist attack on my hometown soil was years before 9/11, and was at the time “the worst Terrorist attack on American soil.” We had never witnessed anything quite like it – save for the somewhat unsuccessful (in the minds of the Terrorists, at least) first attack on the World Trade Center in 1994. I will never forget being unable to get a phone call through to my family, the chilling sound of sirens screaming throughout the city non-stop for hours upon hours that day, the CNN cameras converging on our city, the spotlights guiding the intricate search-and-rescue operations that went on ‘round the clock, word of victims still trapped under the building a full week later, and watching my fellow Oklahomans literally giving their fellow man the shirts off their backs. Just as I’m sure New Yorkers will never forget the sights, smells and sounds of New York on 9/11, I will never forget.

And I won’t soon forget Bill Clinton’s careless comments, either.

Read the whole thing. Plus, from Jacob Sullum: Bill Clinton’s Fertilizer Bomb.

Note that Clinton does not have the guts to say outright that people who criticize the government too harshly have blood on their hands. Instead he strongly suggests it, then retreats to the position that criticism is OK, though violence isn’t, as if anyone were suggesting otherwise. Still, he wants to draw a line between “criticizing a policy or a politician,” which is “part of the lifeblood of democracy,” and “demonizing the government that guarantees our freedoms and the public servants who enforce our laws,” which encourages mass homicide. But since he offers no examples of either, it’s hard to know what sort of speech he considers beyond the pale. For example if I call Clinton a state-worshiping crybaby who equates opposition with sedition, is that legitimate criticism or demonization?

Blood libels. They told me if I voted for John McCain, we’d have a regime where any criticism of the government was regarded as tantamount to treason. And they were right!

UPDATE: Remember when protest was patriotic? “Funny how fast the worm — or maybe it’s the pitchfork — has turned. Now that we’re seeing genuine expressions of populist discontent, not put together by establishment packagers on behalf of an Officially Sanctioned Aggrieved Group, we’re suddenly hearing complaints of ‘mob rule’ and demands for civility. Civility is fine, but those who demand it should show it. The Obama administration — and its corps of willing supporters in the press and the punditry — has set the tone, and they are now in a poor position to complain.”

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