Eric Boehlert | A President Was Killed the Last Time Right-Wing
Eric Boehlert, Media Matters for America: "I've been thinking a lot of Kennedy and Dallas as I've watched the increasingly violent rhetorical attacks on Obama be unfurled. As Americans yank their kids of class in order to save them from being exposed to the President of the United States who only wanted to urge them to excel in the classroom. And as unvarnished hate and name-calling passed for health care 'debate' this summer."
The media are faced with a serious challenge. On the one hand, free speech is a vital pillar of American life. On the other hand, some kinds of speech can cause serious damage, along the lines of "Will no one rid me of this troublesome woman?" We really need to stay focused on facts and actions, not idealogy and personality. If you say, "This guy is evil and deserves to die," that's more likely to result in actual injury than if you say, "This guy's proposal is flawed because X, Y, and Z so we should use Alternate Solution B instead."