Mere minutes ago, I read about the shooting and death of third term Congresswoman, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords at a Tucson grocery store. She was trying to meet with voters; her last tweet invited people to come see and talk to her. She was a Democrat who supported health insurance reform and voted for last term’s bill. She won her last election by a narrow margin, and is the only member of Congress married to an active military officer (he was also an astronaut). Recently, her office was vandalized; she and several members of Congress have received threats over the health insurance reform bill that was passed last session.
Princeton University defines terrorism as “the calculated use of violence (or the threat of violence) against civilians in order to attain goals that are political or religious or ideological in nature; this is done through intimidation or coercion or instilling fear.” Dictionary.com‘s first definition is “the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp. for political purposes.”
This woman was shot at the grocery store. Why? Because she was a supporter of health insurance reform? Because she was a damn broad woman in a position of political authority?
I’m going to make this very clear: she was killed for political purposes, and that is terrorism. But you won’t see the assassin prosecuted for terrorism, just murder. And you won’t see any admission by the Powers That Be that non-brown or non-Muslims could possibly commit terrorism because then we would have to address what really causes terrorism. And you certainly won’t see full-body scanners going in at the grocery store or the mall, because then we would all understand what security theatre is all about.
Update: I had forgotten about this. Funny, I hear it’s been taken down from Sarah Palin’s site!