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wundayatta's avatar

Why did the republicans laugh when asked 'Who's Gonna Shoot Obama?'?

Asked by wundayatta (58599points) February 25th, 2011

Ok, this is, admittedly, a highly inflammatory kind of question, but I am interested in the psychology of the situation. A report at TPM said that even the Congressman laughed when this question was asked. Was this nervous laughter? He responded, “I know there’s frustration with the President…”

What’s going on here? Is there some underlying animosity with the President that makes some conservatives assume he’ll be killed? Why would they be like that? Can you explain what they could have been thinking? Is this proper behavior for true patriots? I.e., the President is so bad, he should be killed? Is it for real, or is it, as the Congressman responded, just the rhetoric of frustration?

For extra points, if you were the Congressman, how would you have responded?

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13 Answers

iamthemob's avatar

I would have laughed myself – because the question is at the same time both ridiculous and poignant. It is ridiculous because, of course, no one should really ask this for both practical and legal reasons. It is poignant, though, because it is the most profound expression of democratic idealism – when should we really decide that our president is a tyrant?

Certainly not now. But we should always be asking does our federal government actually represent us?

peridot's avatar

If I were the Congressman, I would’ve said, “On behalf of my colleague in Arizona, Gabrielle Giffords, I would urge you to rethink your words.” God damn. I mean, this was said this soon after her near-assassination?

And completely aside from that, I’m smelling some partisan hypocrisy here. If a gigglefest had been engendered by suggesting Dubya take a few slugs to the brainpan, the speaker probably would’ve ended up on Cheney’s hunting-buddy list.

wundayatta's avatar

@peridot I’m smelling some partisan hypocrisy here.

Guilty as charged. In fact, I admitted it in the details. Although I hope, given their pacifistic tendencies, liberals would not have uttered the comment in the first place. But we do have our own fire brands. Just a few. :)

WasCy's avatar

Why did you ask about “the republicans” unless it was to be deliberately provocative? It seems to me this was a single interchange between one cranky old man (I can identify) and a politician who’s not very quick on his feet.

Me? I’d have answered the same way that Clinton should have answered when he was asked in a puff piece MTV interview, “Boxers or briefs?” A gimlet-eyed stare and pause to make the silly bastard uncomfortable, and no oral response at all, then call for the next question. The next serious question, please. We’re talking serious business in the running of the national government here. This is not a Facebook wall post or a private webcam tête-a-tête.

stoker's avatar

Sadly, I think it would be disengenuous of any U. S. citizen to question why our current president constantly walks around with a bullseye on his body. It’s extremely discouraging to think that a person would have to consider his personal safety, as well as that of his immediate family, just to pursue a career in politics in our amazing country. Racist extremism exists in cultures that pride themselves on acceptance? Go figure.

peridot's avatar

@wundayatta Oh no, I wasn’t referring to you—I meant the way the main American political parties behave and/or are portrayed.

GA for @WasCy and @stoker, btw. I know politics has always been an extremely passionate arena (one reason I tend to steer clear of it), but it’s just gettin’ stupid out there. We claim to be the greatest country in the world—peopled by the allegedly most intelligent species on the aforementioned planet—and this is what passes for political “discourse”? Dayam.

Seelix's avatar

I seriously thought that W would have been assassinated, or that there at least would have been an attempt or two. People seem to be pretty unsatisfied with what Obama has done, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility. But as far as I know, nothing Obama has done can be considered a war crime.

incendiary_dan's avatar

@Seelix Noam Chomsky might be able to help you see some of those.

Seelix's avatar

@incendiary_dan – Thanks for that. I’ll have to read it in more depth when I have time – Mister Noam and I usually agree. I’ll admit that I haven’t been following Obama’s presidency very carefully at all.

incendiary_dan's avatar

@Seelix Some of the usual critics are going easier on him, but there’s still plenty of people keeping track of his misdeeds. Doesn’t help that Howard Zinn died. :(

Ron_C's avatar

@Seelix Americans don’t shoot failed presidents that support the military industrial complex. Lincoln was shot for upsetting business in the south, Kennedy was shot for attempting to leave Vietnam and cutting off funds to the CIA drug dealers and military contractors. Bush supported all of these organizations, even a form of slavery that uses foreign workers in sweat shops.

Reagan was shot buy a crazy guy and was saved by high tech help from his friends in the military industrial complex. No president, as far as I know was shot by a patriot. There were always economic reasons. I predict that Obama would be in real trouble if he actually fulfills his promise to get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

filmfann's avatar

W would never have been assassinated before someone took out Cheney. He was W’s life insurance.
I don’t understand how the Right, who say they are Pro Life, promote things like shooting Supreme Court Justices, Obama, or Congresswomen in Arizona.

Pattijo's avatar

The first thing that comes to my mind is , people do not respect each other anymore and it is really beginning to show , in homes , at work places , in politics , in schools ex….. The world needs a quick make-over before it gets worse , which is just where we are headed !
So the statement did not surprise me and were sure to see more statements just like this one !

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