Digby found this timeline of violent rhetoric and political violence that is absolutely chilling. It's a compilation of "insurrectionist violence (or the promotion of such violence) that have occurred" since June, 2008 when the Supreme Court ruled in Heller, endorsing the "National Rifle Association’s 'individual right' interpretation of the Second Amendment, and affirmed, "that one of the purposes of the right is to 'assure the existence of a “citizens’ militia” as a safeguard against tyranny.'"
There really couldn't be a clearer demonstration that both sides do not have an equal share of the blame, and that non-stop anti-government fear-baiting works to foment violence. Here's a few weeks in the spring of 2009.
March 11, 2009—NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre speaks at the 2009 Conservative Political Action Conference and announces that “Our Founding Fathers understood that the guys with the guns make the rules.”
March 21-22, 2009—Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-MN) states that she wants residents of her state to be “armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back. Thomas Jefferson told us ‘having a revolution every now and then is a good thing,’ and the people—we the people—are going to have to fight back hard if we’re not going to lose our country.”
April 4, 2009—Neo-Nazi Richard Poplawski shoots and kills three police officers responding to a 911 call to his home in Pittsburgh. His friend Edward Perkovic tells reporters that Poplawski feared “the Obama gun ban that’s on its way” and “didn’t like our rights being infringed upon.” Perkovic also commented that Poplawski carried out the shooting because “if anyone tried to take his firearms, he was gonna’ stand by what his forefathers told him to do.”
April 7, 2009—The Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis releases an assessment of right wing extremism in the United States. The Department notes that “the economic downturn and the election of the first African American president present unique drivers for rightwing radicalization and recruitment.” Recalling the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing by Timothy McVeigh, the Department speculates, “The possible passage of new restrictions on firearms and the return of military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks.”
April 15, 2009—Daniel Knight Hayden, 52, is arrested by FBI agents after he openly states on Twitter that he is going to turn the upcoming Oklahoma City “Tea Party” into a bloodbath. Two months earlier, Hayden had written online, “The only thing that is keeping the New World Order from destroying this nation is the presence of over 100,000,000 guns in civilian hands. When guns are outlawed, only criminals will have guns. Since we are already criminals in the eyes of the New World Order, and they intend to enslave us all, and to kill those of us who will NOT submit to their slavery, I say to IGNORE gun "laws" and keep your guns (AND ammo) handy.”
There's a reason that the DHS didn't release an assessement of left wing extremism in the United States. Digby highlights another several days, just last summer, "which culminated a week later with this shoot out with police."
July 2, 2010—The Wyoming Department of Revenue suspends sales tax collections at the state's gun shows because of "increasing animosity" toward field tax agents. Dan Noble, director of the department's Excise Tax Division, cites one particular incident at a gun show that "crossed the line" and says, "We tend to have more trouble at gun shows than any place ... I have 10 field reps throughout the state, and every one of them has experienced some animosity ... I don't want to put my people at risk."
July 3, 2010—Joyce Kaufman, a conservative radio hosts on WFTL in Florida, tells a crowd of supporters at a Fort Lauderdale Tea Party event, “I am convinced that the most important thing the Founding Fathers did to ensure me my First Amendments rights was they gave me a Second Amendment. And if ballots don’t work, bullets will. This is the standoff. When I say I’ll put my microphone down on November 2nd if we haven’t achieved substantial victory, I mean it. Because if at that point I’m going to up into the hills of Kentucky, I’m going to go out into the Midwest, I’m going to go up in the Vermont and New Hampshire outreaches and I’m going to gather together men and women who understand that some things are worth fighting for and some things are worth dying for.”
July 6, 2010—Herb Titus, a lawyer for Gun Owners of America, tells Religion Dispatches, "If you have a people that has basically been disarmed by the civil government, then there really isn't any effectual means available to the people to restore law and liberty and that's really the purpose of the right to keep and bear arms—is to defend yourself against a tyrant." Titus goes on to cite the "totalitarian threat" posed by "Obamacare" and "what Sarah Palin said about the death panels."
They're still at it, and if anything, are doubling down on the paranoia, and the threat from the "hard left" to their very existence. Anyone hoping that the Arizona massacre would make the eliminationists and insurrectionists have second thoughts doesn't understand the depth of their pathology.