ABC News thought it was – in the words of George Stephanopoulos – “too ugly” and “too dangerous” and refused to air it. So Rep. Adam Kinzinger tweeted this on Sunday night, leading us all to see the threatening letter that had recently come to his wife. Sophia, the house where she lives with her 5-month-old son, Christian.
It greets him with a profane sexual slur. Then it gets worse:
“The pimp you married not only broke his oath, he sold his soul. Yours and Christian’s too! Adam’s activities have hurt not only this country, but countless patriotic and god-fearing families. Therefore, although it may take time, he will be killed. But don’t worry! You and the Christians will join in hell with Adam!”
When asked about the threat by Stephanopoulos on Sunday on ABC’s “This Week,” Kinzinger gave an ominous answer. Seeing the pace of this country, he said, “There is violence in the future.”
But the truth is that the violence – the January 6 attack on the US Capitol by supporters of Donald Trump – is the only reason many of us even know Kizinger’s name. The Illinois congressman is one of just two Republicans — Rep. Liz Cheney being the other — who had the moral fortitude to serve on the House committee investigating the coup attempt. Hence, threats from fellow Republicans.
The 2017 shootings of GOP Representative Steve Scalise and four others and this month’s arrest of a man who allegedly sought to assassinate conservative Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh stymied any claim that violence was against the political right. unique to. No, the violence remains, as H. As Rap Brown said in 1967, “as American as cherry pie.”
But the embrace of violence, the cultivation of violence, the silent encouragement of violence, has become conspicuous and disturbing, a Republican staple. So January 6th was not an accident. Contrary to what you’d expect from a party that supports guns as a remedy for political dissent, whose leader explicitly encourages and condemns swindling, where each candidate for office is on a TV. Spot runs co-starring a shotgun. Indeed, former Missouri Governor Eric Greetens is seeking a Senate seat with an ad showing him wielding a long gun with a team in tactical gear while breaking into a house. “Today, we’re going RINO hunting,” he says.
The acronym stands for “Republican in Name Only”, which is not coincidentally what Republicans such as Grittens Republicans refer to as Kinzinger. The ad appeared online the day after Kizinger disclosed the threats against his family.
This is our role model now. Republicans no longer talk policy or ideas. Republicans only threaten.
Isaac Asimov famously called violence “the last refuge of the disabled”. But violence – except in self-defense – is also the loser’s last refuge, the last gasp of those who have no more words, the silent confession of those who know, but hate to admit that they have nothing found. If you can’t win the argument, win the fight. A chant for thugs, bully boys, and other Republicans.
“There is violence in the future,” Kizinger said. And it was not unlike someone saying, “There’s a storm in the future,” as rain hits the window and lawn furniture is scattered throughout the yard.
Yes, things can go awry. Although they are already bad enough. One of our two major political parties is a threat to the country. And absent a dramatic course correction, it seems likely that decompression is in the future, pain is in the future, regret is in the future.
But violence? He is already here.
Leonard Pitts Jr. is a Miami Herald columnist. © 2022 Miami Herald. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency.