Arizona Shooting Prompts Lawmaker to Make Percieved Threating Symbols and Speech a Federal Crime

Bookmark and Share   Pennsylvania Congressman Robert Brady is drafting proposed legislation that would make the use of threatening language and/or symbols in regards to federal officials, a federal offense.

The move is a political reaction to the tragic assassination attempt of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords which took the lives of six and injured 14 others including the Congresswoman.

In the aftermath of the tragedy, most political leaders acted quite responsibly and instead of trying to politicize the massacre and exploit it for political points, they offered respectful messages of unity and heartfelt condolences and prayers. But a din of noise did come from other sectors of the left as they quickly tried to connect the shooting rampage to conservative, anti-government sentiments and personalities such as Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin.

Now only two days after the tragedy, some politicians are trying to jump out in front of the issue by proposing legislation that is suppose to prevent future such massacres.

Brady’s proposal may or may not have good intentions. His desire to not even wait till the first of the victims are buried before he politicizes the event by turning it into legislative action, makes one wonder if he is just trying to get his name out there or really trying to solve the problem that we face with violence of the likes that we saw in Tucson. Further reason to question his intentions is his proposed legislation’s inability to actually prevent a repeat of what we just saw.

The motives behind the attack in Arizona are still not fully understood and all the facts surrounding the case are still not public. Yet Brady’s unwillingness to wait for these facts has him proposing a legislative solution to an incident that he does not yet know all the facts about. But beyond the lack of knowledge regarding the situation Brady is trying to propose a solution to, is the lack of viability that his solution has.

Brady proposes to make the use of language and symbols that can be perceived as threatening, illegal. Whose perception will be the rule of thumb? Who will determine whose perceptions are used to declare a symbol or a string words as threatening? Just how much speech and freedom of expression would Brady’s new measure eliminate from public use?

Perhaps Rep. Brady should take a deep breath and allow all facts to come out before he tries to implement a new gag order on the American people as whole. Maybe he should begin to understand the message that Americans sent during the 2010 midterm elections when they said they want less government, not more government and an even bigger nanny state than we had before those elections.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Arizona Shooting Prompts Lawmaker to Make Percieved Threating Symbols and Speech a Federal Crime

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