Democratic Representative, Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona was shot in the head today and approximately 24 others were shot and/or injured when an assailant opened fire outside a grocery store as the Democratic lawmaker met with constituents. Six people were killed including a judge, one of Giffords’ aides and a nine year old girl.

A doctor spoke on Giffords’ status, she is out of surgery and he expressed optimism that she could recover.

The assailant has been identified as Jared Loughner, a 22 year old white male.

As of this time we don’t have enough details to say categorically what many of us suspect may have driven this man to this shooting rampage.

He could just be insane and not influenced by the voices of hate on the right. He could have had a motivation that was not political. It is not wise to prematurely come to any conclusions no matter how likely they may seem.

However, in the environment of intolerance, hate, threats of gun violence and “2nd Amendment remedies” all coming from the Right, if this has contributed in any way to this tragedy, we must go after those who have been pushing people to violence as being accessories.

Add this event to this week’s mailing of firebombs to Janet Napalitano, the variety of domestic terrorist attacks and plots over the last two years, the endless death threats against Dem politicians including President Obama and the continuing obsession with proliferating guns throughout the U.S., promoting the legal right to carry them nearly anywhere.

It would be prudent to refrain from political declarations about this incident until the facts are known but if our fears are confirmed, this needs to be the moment we step up and say “Enough!”

Enough open hatred and racism, enough intolerance of those with opposing views, enough MSM exploitation of the most extreme and vicious views, enough demagoguery of Democrats as traitors, destroying this nation and being dangerous enemies of freedom and democracy. Enough preying on the fears and prejudices of Americans.

Enough of this cynical game being used by corporations and the wealthy to keep the population at each other’s throats so they can steal more of our nation’s wealth and democracy without a unified citizenry blocking their way.

Enough.

There are many Republicans I dislike but I do not hate any of them. I have never and would never advocate violence against them. I would much rather see them debated and exposed. I believe in the 1st Amendment, I don’t want them silenced but I do want their dishonesty and hypocrisy revealed when practiced.

The cold, mercenary strategy of the GOP and the Kochs and the banks and the corporations, etc., is instability for all except them. Destabilize our democracy, our standard of living, our economy and government itself. Then, there is no institutional challenge to their power and control.

If this turns out to be a case where a mentally unstable person was manipulated by the campaign of these people, we have a choice to either let this be the rallying cry against this deterioration of our society or else see more of these horrific acts of domestic terrorism multiply to the accompaniment of Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Karl Rove, Fox News and the rest of this insidious chorus.

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Questinia
Member

The GOP may have you, Sarah Palin, but we have Betty White and….

[img]http://planetpov.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/betty-white.jpg[/img]

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Chernynkaya
Member

HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAH! Yeah, baby– TIRED!

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Mightywoof
Member

I have only one thing to say to that pic Q – *snort* *giggle* – OK, I have only two things to say 😆

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Chernynkaya
Member

Coffee came outta my nose!

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bito
Member

That’s what I believe, in part because that’s what a child like Christina Taylor Green believed. Imagine: here was a young girl who was just becoming aware of our democracy; just beginning to understand the obligations of citizenship; just starting to glimpse the fact that someday she too might play a part in shaping her nation’s future. She had been elected to her student council; she saw public service as something exciting, something hopeful. She was off to meet her congresswoman, someone she was sure was good and important and might be a role model. She saw all this through the eyes of a child, undimmed by the cynicism or vitriol that we adults all too often just take for granted.

I want us to live up to her expectations. I want our democracy to be as good as she imagined it. All of us – we should do everything we can to make sure this country lives up to our children’s expectations.

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bito
Member

After all, that’s what most of us do when we lose someone in our family – especially if the loss is unexpected. We’re shaken from our routines, and forced to look inward. We reflect on the past. Did we spend enough time with an aging parent, we wonder. Did we express our gratitude for all the sacrifices they made for us? Did we tell a spouse just how desperately we loved them, not just once in awhile but every single day?

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Kalima
Admin

I tried I think. I wrote a poem in my darkest hour after I lost my mother, it’s here somewhere, if I find it I’ll post it. It’s normal to think this way bito, to question ourselves if we did enough, often we did and this is just a normal step in our grief process.

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Chernynkaya
Member

Kalima, if I may, and I really hope you can find that poem, you inspired my to share the poem I wrote when my mother died. I hope you dont mind, please excuse me. (I haven’t looked at it since then.)

Watching the Breath (4/25/98)

She inhaled
and exhaled laboriously
slower, shallower
with each breath laying there
so still only her chest moving,
eyes closed but
for the last sixteenth of an inch.

Slower, shallower, slower pause
shallower pause shallower pause
slow
pause pause
shallower. For 2 hours.

Quiet ocean here at noon.
Her brows knit gently
for a second but
I smooth them with a palm.

Then she opened her eyes heavy
eyelids floating up up like feathers and
she stared up up for
a moment her pupils
black as infinity.

(What? What? Mommy? Yes?)
Lids now falling like silk closed but
for that last dire sixteenth of an inch.

Slower, slow I entrain my breath
with hers shallower shallow!
Watching the waves trying to see
the breath come in go out.

A little spittle of sea
foam froths on the sand
of her lips. This last bit
of tide I wipe away
with my shirt.

Pause, pause pause then
slow and shallow pause
pause
pause
pause
pause
then shallow, then

dry.

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Kalima
Admin

I did not believe him.

The Messenger of Death danced through today
Singing songs of emancipation
I held my breath, just blinked an eye
As he took you away from me,
Silence.

Hopes of finding something lost
The sound of your voice
The warmth of your laughter
The hand to soothe my tears,
Only silence now.

Falling into obscurity, not you just I
Entry into an uncertain space to fill
But how?
Only silence.

Do the years really heal my friend
There will never be enough years,
Only silence.

This shattering scream rings in my ears
It is my own,
Only silence.

In these dreams you come so near
And I’m afraid to make a sound in case
My pounding heart should take you away again,.
Silence

And so, the Messenger of Death danced through today
Singing songs of emancipation
I did not believe him
Now only my silence and I prevail.

—-

I feel as if I’m caught in one of those running naked in the street dreams. 😳

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Chernynkaya
Member

Kalima– I just re-read your poem and saw the edit you added at the end. If there was ever a safe place to put up our poems, this place is it! Besides– and this I sincerely believe– it is only the most personal that is the most universal.

EDIT: Besides, it’s late and no one else is watching. 😉

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Kalima
Admin

I know exactly how you feel Cher, that was how much we loved, and it is a shattering experience equal to very few. Even the loss of my own child would have to be up there with the loss I felt with her gone.

I had her headstone engraved with these words.

“Her life a beautiful memory.

Her absence a silent grief.”

It seemed the simplest way to say it.

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Chernynkaya
Member

That day is with me too, always. But looking at the poem again was well, it’s hard to describe. I am back there now. I can never express how shattering.

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Kalima
Admin

Oh I know it’s safe, it just surprised me that it could bring me back to the day of her funeral, which was when I wrote it. I had had no time to cry before that, my father was devastated, I had to organize the funeral and everything that went with it by myself. I was doing ok, a bit wobbly after her Mass, then when it came to the time to throw a handful of earth on her coffin, I almost jumped in, my sister caught me. After the guests had left our house, and my father was safely in bed, I held the cats, one mine, and wrote this at the kitchen table heaving just dry sobs. It wasn’t until I was back in Tokyo that I could finally cry. I cried everywhere, and suddenly, out of the blue. It was an oddly healing time for me to finally be able to cry.

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Chernynkaya
Member

Kalima, so painful and beautiful. The “silence” was so loud, as I recall it. Actually roaring in my ears. The years haven’t healed for me.

I think tonight is the appropriate night to remember our past pain as we face another pain.

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Kalima
Admin

Yes it is Cher, and “time heals” has somehow never really worked for me, my past memories are very vivid still.

The “silence”is very deafening.

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Kalima
Admin

Cher I thanks you for sharing that very private moment. I am deeply touched and so very in tune with your intimate words your grief brought out of you. If you don’t mind I have copied this to keep with mine when I find it. Although we all have slightly different experiences at this, what we feel in our hearts is the same. Thank you.

I’ve been hunting for it, when I find it, I’ll post it under your’s if you won’t mind, before the thread grows larger, and we will be forced to search endlessly.

My house is a great mystery to me, I’ve been searching endlessly for things that i would never throw away for years now. This is now my project until I find them, I’ll let you know when I do.

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Chernynkaya
Member

I certainly don’t mind, Kalima. I look forward to reading it. Thank you!

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Chernynkaya
Member

Kalima– I know how you feel. I squirmed too, but please–put it up. don’t leave me out there alone! 🙂

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Kalima
Admin

I just found it Cher, I’ll have it up soon, but do feel a little embarrassed, it’s very angry and raw.

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Mightywoof
Member

When my Mum was alive we’d speak on the phone every week; before she died I got really tied up in something that now seems very unimportant but I kept telling myself ‘oh, I must remember to call Mum today’ – but I didn’t and then she died suddenly and to this day it haunts me that I didn’t call because I was too busy. So, yeah, tell your loved ones how much you love them every single moment of every day for as long as you live before it’s too late to do so.

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Kalima
Admin

I’m sorry Mw, and yes it will haunt us, as it did with a friend of mine who died from complications from AIDs. I was supposed to call him in the hospital where he was battling pneumonia, I tried for hours to connect, and fell asleep with the phone still in my hand. In my early morning the phone woke me, it was his mother telling me that he had died just a few hours before. I didn’t get to say goodbye, it never leaves the back of my mind.

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Mightywoof
Member

The sticks we find to beat oursaelves with, eh?? I’m sure your friend, like my Mum, knew how much you cared and loved him. They would forgive us – if only we could forgive ourselves!

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kesmarn
Admin

[img]http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcS4Whuy_omZb0Lr_-X1ToOezWyZMnlGam62Ps32OEXqKF4R-LDqHg[/img]

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bito
Member
AlphaBitch
Member
AlphaBitch

Obama’s tribute left me both humbled and proud. I will rise to the challenge of attempting to be a better, not bitter, person. And to sit with my Alpha Pup, the young man who has seen so much tragedy in his lifetime in a country that witnesses horrors like this and worse much more frequently than we see here, left me proud to be from this country, at this time, with this President.

Like Bito, I have tears in my eyes. But I have a smile in my heart.

Good night, lovely and good friends. Sleep peacefully. – AB

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kesmarn
Admin

Good night, AB. You’re Alpha Pup’s hero, and the rest of the kids’ too.

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Khirad
Member

Goodnight, AB.

You’ve already widened your circle. You are who we Americans should aspire to be more like.

Tell Alpha pup he needs to teach me some vocab here and there.

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bito
Member
Chernynkaya
Member

I started tearing up when the orchestra Played Copeland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man.”

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Mightywoof
Member

I missed the first part of thre memorial Cher – and I so love Copeland. If it’s not inappropriate – here it is

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kesmarn
Admin

“Simple Gifts” by the chorus was a good choice, too, Cher.

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Chernynkaya
Member

It was, kes. By then I was a mess. 😉

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kesmarn
Admin

I don’t think there was a dry eye on the Planet, Cher.

I think the whole situation was affecting me even more than I realized it was. And hearing Obama’s words and the music opened the flood gates.

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bito
Member

Didn’t take long.
Conservatives Criticize Free T-Shirts At Tucson Memorial Service
http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/01/conservatives-criticize-free-tshirts-at-tucson-service.php

These people are as bad as Fred Phelps. It was a memorial for people who were murdered!! STFU for one day, one hour!!

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Khirad
Member

x2

And that’s a great comparison. I should have called the trolls that.

But then I’d be a Blood Libeler. 😆

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kesmarn
Admin

“Widen the circle of our concern…” A phrase spoken by Obama in this speech and being analyzed by Rachel Maddow and Rev. Weldon Gaddy now.

What a notion. Not circling the wagons and going into defensive, exclusive mode. Not fearing the “other,” and recognizing the needs of “me and mine” only. Widening the circle.

Rev. Gaddy’s last word: “If Gabby opened her eyes today, maybe we can, too.”

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Khirad
Member

It’s imagery is simple and profound. The circle I am told was also part of the Indian ceremony (I’m assuming to the four directions, I didn’t see it).

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bito
Member

Yes Khirad, it was.

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bito
Member

“At a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized — at a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who think differently than we do — it’s important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we’re talking with each other in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds,”

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bito
Member

“If Gabby opened her eyes, maybe we can too”

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kesmarn
Admin

OK, you type faster than I do. I admit it. And I’m wordy. 😀

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bito
Member

Yours was better, I didn’t know the gentleman’s name. That was the one line I caught.

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bito
Member

A few years ago, Gabby’s spokesperson attempted to get everyone to use her full name, not use Gabby–didn’t work! 🙂

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Khirad
Member
kesmarn
Admin

I think “Gabby” is cute.

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Khirad
Member

It’s funny how articles have to keep explaining that yes, we really do all call her that. Friend and foe alike. That’s the kind of place Tucson is.

[img]http://c0164992.cdn.cloudfiles.rackspacecloud.com/56843b5e-e1d2-433a-a259-b67d5d9aa526.jpg[/img]

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bito
Member

I’m glad I watched this alone and not in public. It was a tearjerker for me.

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Khirad
Member

It was just brilliant. I’m gonna have to read that transcript.

…But they can’t stop once, the trolls. “Why the cheering at the university, is he holding a pep rally?, it’s not solemn… blah blah blah”. I just deleted them. I wasn’t having it. This was personal.

I know you don’t care about trolls, I’m just giving you a hint of what to expect tomorrow from the hatepundits.

Bottom line is this:

Do you even remember Sarah’s fumbling attempt at acting presidential earlier after today that?

This is what a true leader is.

But I missed the Indian ceremony. What was that like? Were they local tribes?

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bito
Member

Prepared remarks released by the WH

http://tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/01/obamas-full-remarks-at-the-tucson-memorial.php

It was a U of A prof Yaqi/ Mexican. Fifth generation in the valley.

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Mightywoof
Member

Have you read the link to Bob Cescda’s article that Kalima posted below – it’s a real hoot with a lot of memorable phrases about SP’s noncompoopery 😆

Yeah – it what a true leader is – can we have him if you guys don’t want him any more 🙂

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Khirad
Member

Waaaah, they committed a Holocaust against me.

I loved it.

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Kalima
Admin

I wouldn’t mind him over here, we just have ventriloquists dummies in Japan.

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Mightywoof
Member

😆 – we have them here too but they will insist on playing the piano and singing to prove they’re just like us 🙄

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Kalima
Admin

😆 The absolute worst kind Mw, and they sing off key while their tiny feet can’t even reach the pedals. 😯

When the so called LibDems (actually socialists) won the election here, they hailed Hatoyama as the new Obama, I almost choked on my Frosties. 😆

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Kalima
Admin

Don’t have to hold your breath Khirad, CNN has a bunch of pundits/ truth bandits are gathered on CNN, I’m just about to switch off my tv.

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Kalima
Admin

The only blogger I still read on HP.

“Sarah Palin Fumbles and Flails Into an Otherwise Solemn Day”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bob-cesca/sarah-palin-fumbles-and-f_b_808336.html

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kesmarn
Admin

Wow, Kalima. Cesca was furious and it comes through loud and clear. Pull punches, he does not!

Whenever she parades her white-trashy reality show attitude into public view, it’s an ongoing display of ridiculousness, unrivaled in decades. But today, she veered far from her usual flailing, and jutted her screechy yapper into the wrong news cycle — on a day when she would have been better served by exercising some self control. On a day when the victims of Tucson will be memorialized and the heroes of Tucson will be elevated to historical prominence, it’s no time for a cable TV doof to inject her brand of political masturbation.

Ultimately, her nincompoopery and fumbly ignorance was completely eclipsed today by her reprehensible tastelessness, proved by the ill-considered timing of her video, and, even worse, by her unforgivable lack of deference to the men and women who have more than earned our attention for at least one uninterrupted day. We can only hope the embarrassment she’s enduring as a consequence of today’s gaffe-parade will dissuade her from doing it again.

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Kalima
Admin

He speaks the truth, and I respect the man for that. He might not be quite as refined as Tomasky, but still, he doesn’t mince his words either. I found it refreshing, will AH?

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kesmarn
Admin

The phrase “jutted her screechy yapper” was priceless, Kalima.

I know our president just called upon us to take the high road, so I’ll try not to use that phrase in public. 😳 But its eloquence is undeniable.

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Kalima
Admin

Obama headlines memorial for victims of Saturday’s shooting.

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/US/01/12/arizona.shooting.victims/index.html

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boomer1949
Member

Let’s compare President Obama’s thoughtful­, well crafted, well presented speech to SP’s. No…wait.­..never mind

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Kalima
Admin

It would take all night boomer ;), we have better things to do, right?

Hope that you are feeling better.

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Mightywoof
Member

I hope none of you take this the wrong way but as I listen to this powerful speech from this very humble and good man I keep thinking to myself he’s just too good a person for America. He’s been reviled since before the day he took his oath of office, he’s been criticized for things done and not done, things said and not said. No matter what he does or says it will never be enough for any on the right and a lot on the left. He deserves better than he has received.

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Khirad
Member

Nope, we agree. (I’m gonna speak for you guys whether you like it or not)

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Kalima
Admin

In the political climate of the last two years Mw, I would be lying if I said that the same thought hasn’t crossed my mind too. Blogging here with all of you has put this thought on the back burner. Still, for some, he certainly is too good for them.

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kesmarn
Admin

No offense taken here, MW.

Maybe he’s proof that a country doesn’t always get the leaders it deserves. Sometimes it gets better.

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bito
Member

You are so right ,Woof.

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kesmarn
Admin

Looks as though he’s getting a very enthusiastic reaction from the crowd, Kalima.

And he’s taking the spotlight off of himself to honor the heroes of the hour.

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kesmarn
Admin

Good to see Sheriff Clarence Dupnik there.

Jon Kyl not so much.

Grief as a time for self-examination. A recognition of our own mortality and what really matters in life…

Things that need to be said.

“Healer in Chief?”

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Khirad
Member

That shot to Kyl during that line was price-less.

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Kalima
Admin

The President just left after greeting people. I saw no exchange between him and Kyl, or McCain on his way out.

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Kalima
Admin

Yes he is good at taking the spotlight off himself because he really cares. My video cut off after a few seconds, I’m sure the whole speech will be up somewhere soon.

EDIT: It’s live on CNN. Good Lord, it looks as if he has gone grey overnight.

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Mightywoof
Member

“…… it looks as if he has gone grey overnight.”

I just said the same thing to hubby, Kalima. His job takes a lot out of any person who occupies the Oval Office, doesn’t it?

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Kalima
Admin

It was quite shocking nonetheless, wasn’t it?

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Mightywoof
Member

It was shocking although a few months ago I remember thinking that he was getting a little grey – so you’re right, it seems to have happened overnight!

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kesmarn
Admin

I wish you could see it, Kalima. (I’m watching on MSNBC.)

A MUCH needed call to heed our better angels, an appeal to America’s higher motives…the crowd seems hungry and thirsty for these words.

I guess I didn’t realize how much I was, too.

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Kalima
Admin

No fear kes, I found it on CNN and am watching it with you. Very powerful words.

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kesmarn
Admin

Glad you can watch over there across the big wide sea, Kalima.

Tears on this side.

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Mightywoof
Member

Call me an ol’ softie but I have tears in my eyes and I think Michelle Obama did too – the President was very moved and moving speaking about those who died.

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kesmarn
Admin

Allow me to pass you one of the tissues I have here, Mighty. 🙁

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Kalima
Admin

Any left kes?

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Kalima
Admin

Danke schoen, (at the risk of sounding like McGrumpy) my friend too. 🙂

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kesmarn
Admin

Here you are, my friend…

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bito
Member
Chernynkaya
Member

Oh! just noticed-looks like I predicted it 2 days ago too (although it was obvious):

I heard a discussion that rang true: It’s not even the actual rhetoric that is so destructive to our society, as much as the underlying white-hot heat. Old timers remembered heavy political rhetoric from the past but not the intense anger concurrent with it, and THAT’S what feels different now.

These haters know it, know they are being condemned. That makes their fears more real: The government will take away our guns! They will stop our God-given free speech! They cannot silence us! So, for now, they feel justified in their sense of victimhood as cheated whites. Until their leaders step up to the plate and, over time, try to calm down their followers, these folk will be even angrier and feel more aggrieved.

But in the end, these regressives won’t get what they want from the Repub Party, because corporations don’t care about the wedge issues they themselves stoked. They only care about less regulation, lower taxes and minuscule government. It might no longer serve corporate interests to have people so focused on their divisive methods, on their hate-flaming–they are slimy creatures who need the dark to operate effectively.

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Chernynkaya
Member

Mightywoof called it 2 days ago:

01/10/2011 at 7:05 AM

I’m glad I watched right through to the end Patsy – I was getting hotter and hotterer under the collar I’m not wearing 🙂

I’ve been reading so much in the last couple of days about this massacre and I’m horrified that the call to cool the political rhetoric has served only to fan the flames – the rw is defensive but are getting their memes out there (one I’ve come across in several sites is ‘blood libel’ – whatever the hell that’s supposed to mean) and the lw is getting angry that the rw just doesn’t get it. In all this the tragedy of what happened has been forgotten and the fight goes on.

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Kalima
Admin

In case you missed it on MB this morning.

“Just jump on the bandwagon Trent before the real victims are even buried with any respect. Sickening, just how low on the chain will they go?”
————

We’re Arizona shooting victims too, says Tea Party co-founder

“Trent Humphries says killings fallout is evolving into conspiracy to destroy Tea Party and silence criticism of government”

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jan/11/arizona-shootings-tea-party

Arizona lawmakers seek to block funeral protests

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE70B0F420110112

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Khirad
Member

I have some good links on blocking the funeral protests down at the same place.

Oh, and one on Glock sales now up double in Phoenix and a new state legislator bringing her gun onto the Arizona House floor Monday. That’s right, Monday the 10th.

Just in case y’all missed ’em.

Wonderful state we have here. We’re totally learning all the right lessons. 🙄

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Kalima
Admin

Seems like everyone is missing the point there Khirad, and needs to remember the words of MLK when he said that “violence begets violence.”

Stricter gun laws should be a starting point.

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bito
Member

That seems to be their meme, Kalima. “Oh, we’re victims. of a left wing smear.”
But weren’t you part of a group calling Mr. Obama a Nazi-Socialist-Muslim-Commie-America Hater?

And this?

In his own city, that attention has focused on Humphries, whose organisation threw its support behind Giffords’s opponent in November’s election, Jesse Kelly.

Kelly, a former marine who served in Iraq, published a controversial campaign advert which included the lines: “Get on Target for Victory in November. Help remove Gabrielle Giffords from office. Shoot a fully automatic M16 with Jesse Kelly.”

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Kalima
Admin

And of course those words by Humphries weren’t meant to incite any form of violence at all, right?

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bito
Member

I need to look at some of the archives on what they were saying during the campaign. Not today, but later. They weren’t pretty.

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