Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Obama Goes To Tuscon; A Paul Wellstone Memorial Redux?

Ah, Barack Obama finally gets the moment the liberal intelligentsia has been praying for: A chance to "heal" the American people after a senseless tragedy, deftly pinned on political enemies.

But these healing moments can sometimes - if used carelessly - can wind up pouring kerosene into the wounds. Let's go back to 2003, and the untimely death of hardcore liberal Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone, and his memorial service, which turned into
a pep rally for the Democratic party:

Gov. Ventura says he was so upset by the partisan tone of the public eulogies for Paul Wellstone that he may appoint an independent to fill Wellstone's seat. Twenty-thousand people showed up at Williams Arena for a memorial service for Wellstone, his wife and daughter and three other campaign staffers, who died in a plane crash last Friday. Republican Party officials and many others also said they were upset that the service turned political.

Ventura says he was "disgusted" that the public Wellstone memorial turned into a political rally. Ventura walked out of the memorial service, which ended with calls to continue Wellstone's legacy at the polls. Ventura says turning a memorial into a political event was despicable.

"I went to pay my respects in the manner we were asked to do so, and I think that it was very deceitful to turn it into a political rally," he said. "I know the head of the Democratic Party is trying to sit and say, these were spontaneous speeches and all that - well, if you believe that..."

Many callers, who said they were both Democrats and Republicans, flooded talk radio stations with complaints about the partisan tone of the event...

Even Slate was turned off at the time:

There's a salutary practicality about many of the liberal clich├ęs repeated and applauded tonight. But there's a creepy arrogance about them, too. The ceremony's closing speaker, Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa, says Wellstone "never took himself too seriously" and "never had to proclaim his decency." Yet tonight, the men and women who purport to represent Wellstone's legacy are taking themselves quite seriously and constantly proclaiming their decency. "We can redeem the sacrifice of his life if you help us win this election for Paul Wellstone," Kahn tells the crowd. Somewhere, Wellstone must be turning on his cross.

Result: A last-minute win for now-Senator Norm Coleman (R).

Is Obama in danger of falling into this trap? Well, being that tonight's "healing" already has a logo...:

President Obama will speak at a memorial event at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 12 to support and remember victims of the mass shooting in Tucson, and to lift the spirits of those who have been personally affected by this tragedy.

"Together We Thrive: Tucson and America," will take place at McKale Center and is free and open to the campus and greater Tucson community.

In addition to President Obama, UA President Robert N. Shelton, state and federal officials and members of the Associated Students of the UA will give brief remarks. The event will include a Native American blessing, a moment of silence, a poetry reading and the presentation of a chain featuring messages from members of the public.

Fairly warned be ye, says I, Mr. President. The public is already on edge, what with an near-assassination and the subsequent attempt by the leftist media to blame in on their political enemies, al la the Reichstag Fire. Remember, Mr. President, that the people your allies are blaming for this slaughter - the Tea Party and the conservative movement - make up about half the nation. Take a side, and a rift will open that will make this weekend's media circus seem like a carnival sideshow.

And when the people see that the healer-in-chief has instead salted the wound, well...your party's losses in 2010 will look like nothing compared to the tsunami that will face you in 2012...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Watching the event tonight, I couldn't help but think of the Wellstone memorial! Not quite as bad, but surely an odd tone to the whole thing, wasn't it?