What would happen if we began to use figures of speech that don't involve violence? I've been wondering about that the last few days.
A nine year old girl is being laid to rest as I write this. A nine year old girl named Christina who was bright and beautiful and curious about the workings of government, now that she was on student council.
What would have happened if she'd been raised in a world where political opponents still referred to each other as "my learned colleague," disagreeing but not threatening with terms culled from the world of guns?
This last Saturday, a family friend who wanted to support her desire for knowledge took her to a meet and greet with the local congress rep, Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ).
This last Saturday, a young man with a history of strange behavior made his way to the grocery store parking lot where Rep. Giffords mingled with her district's residents. For reasons clear only to his mind, he shot the congresswoman from Arizona at point blank range, and twenty others. Six, including Christina, died.
As with any other event with a vague link to anything political, the debate on how to prevent a recurrence quickly dissolved into a pointing contest. The right is blaming the left; the left is blaming the right.
Can we please return to the civilized middle before this happens again?