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The “verbal violence” of Imus

Posted by Richard on April 19, 2007

Despite an ability to sound rather moderate, mainstream, and reasonable, Sen. Obama's positions on the issues are standard far-left positions, so I was never inclined to vote for him for President. But now, he's disqualified himself in my eyes for non-ideological reasons — a lack of judgment and decency exhibited in his remarks about the Virginia Tech massacre.

Ben Smith at Politico has a link to the 23-minute MP3 and offers a brief summary with quotes:

"There's also another kind of violence that we're going to have to think about. It's not necessarily the physical violence, but the violence that we perpetrate on each other in other ways," he said, and goes on to catalogue other forms of "violence."

There's the "verbal violence" of Imus.

There's "the violence of men and women who have worked all their lives and suddenly have the rug pulled out from under them because their job is moved to another country."

There's "the violence of children whose voices are not heard in communities that are ignored,"

And so, Obama says, "there's a lot of different forms of violence in our society, and so much of it is rooted in our incapacity to recognize ourselves in each other."

Many politicians would avoid, I think, suggesting that outsourcing and mass-murder belong in the same category.

Or the crude, stupid insults of Imus. Or being ignored. This load of moral equivalence crap — this inflating of the importance of minor slights or failings or inconveniences — trivializes a truly horrific event and insults its victims.

It reminds me of Ingrid Newkirk's infamous comparison of broiler chickens with Holocaust victims, and it's utterly contemptible. To borrow a quote from the past, "Senator, have you no shame?" 

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