The junior senator from Texas just cannot resist the urge to respond to a heinous and deeply tragic event by playing politics. Specifically, in a press release on his Senate website, he’s claiming:
As more and more facts surrounding the Fort Hood attack surface, it looks increasingly probable that the alleged attacker, Major Nidal Hasan, heeded these terrorist calls to violence, compelled by a fanatical religious ideology. If Islamist terrorism was the driving force behind the senseless violence at Fort Hood, as it seems to be, this attack must serve as a call to action for the federal government.
If I rewrote that paragraph this way, would the junior senator still feel the federal government had been called to action?
As more and more facts surrounding the assassination of Dr. George Tiller surface, it looks increasingly probable that the alleged attacker, Scott Roeder, heeded these terrorist calls to violence, compelled by a fanatical religious ideology. If anti-abortion terrorism was the driving force behind the senseless violence at Dr. Tiller’s church, as it seems to be, this attack mus serve as a call to action for the federal government.
Well, since the junior senator has not yet issued any such statement, and Dr. Tiller was murdered in June, I’m not holding my breath.
I’m not denying that the accused gunman at Ft. Hood appears to have suffered from a deep crisis and distortion of faith. The stories coming out now strongly suggest that something went horribly wrong, not only with the man himself, but with the way the army managed (or mismanaged) the many red flags that appear to have been waving in front of the eyes of people who should have, could have, might have done something differently and prevented a tragedy.
The first point I’m making is that some politicians, including John Cornyn, can’t resist the urge to play politics, even at a time when our nation would be better served by a more appropriate, apolitical approach.
The second point I’m making is that for years now, evidence has piled up that anti-abortion zealots, especially those who become murderers, or attempted murderers, do not operate in a vacuum. They write inflammatory emails, give away their possessions (or file for bankruptcy), correspond with other zealots who are leaders in the movement, and suggest what they might do on message boards.
I’m all for congressional hearings looking into how we missed the signs in the Ft. Hood tragedy, but I think the scope of the hearings needs to be expanded. How do we miss the signs when anti-abortion zealots go over the edge, especially given how often those nutjobs actually carry signs telling us how they feel?