Sarah Palin’s Street Gang:Promoting A Culture of Violence

10 Jan

Jessica Valenti’s article, The Shooting of Gabrielle Giffords highlights the “Man-up” culture in US politics: In a country that sees violent masculinity as the ideal, it’s no wonder this rhetoric resonates, does a remarkable job of looking at Tea Party women that have promoted a culture of violence.  Sheriff Dupnik acknowledged this disgrace in his press conference.

Valenti looks at several key culprits, including Sharron Angle, who suggested that if Congress “keeps going the way it is”, people would turn toward “second amendment remedies”. (The second amendment of the US constitution outlines the right of Americans to bear arms.) And in an interview with a local Nevada paper, Angle said: “The nation is arming … If we don’t win at the ballot box, what will be the next step?”

I love how Valenti articulates how these right wing women buy into a masculine model of violence for political expediency: “Stephen Ducat, author of The Wimp Factor: Gender Gaps, Holy Wars and the Politics of Anxious Masculinity, says that masculine and violent language is often used in elections and campaigns – especially by men on the right – because of a fear of being perceived as feminine. In a sexist society, what could be worse than being called a girl? So it doesn’t seem unlikely that conservative female politicians feel the need to peddle their ideas in gendered and violent language in order to fit in with the masculinised right.”  Republican Christine O’Donnell said that her opponent was “unmanly”; Angle told Harry Reid to “man up”; and Palin praised Republican Arizona Governor Jan Brewer as having “the cojones that our president does not have” to enforce immigration laws–all embarrassing examples of the promotion of violence.  Did these women not believe there words would have consequences?  I hope you will take the time to read the article in full.

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5 Responses to “Sarah Palin’s Street Gang:Promoting A Culture of Violence”

  1. Jay January 10, 2011 at 7:53 pm #

    From Sullivan’s blog, a pertinent and I think perceptive addition to your postings on this topic:

    For as long as I can remember, I have heard conservatives blaming everything that is wrong in the universe, from violent crime to declining test scores to teen pregnancy to rude children to declining patriotism to probably athlete’s foot . . . upon Dr. Spock, Hollywood liberals, the abolition of prayer in school, Bill Clinton, the “liberal 1960s,” the teaching of evolution — in other words, upon symbols, rhetoric, cultural norms, and the values expressed by political and media leaders. Yet from the moment when someone gets a gun in their hands, apparently, society ceases to have any influence whatsoever on the outcome and individual responsibility takes hold 100%. Something is driving the tripling of death threats against congressmen (and the concomitant rise in threats against Federal judges and other villains of the right, from Forest Service rangers to climate scientists) and it isn’t the sunspot cycle.

  2. Lucy Derkach January 12, 2011 at 4:45 am #

    Good Morning, Reading this blog is a real pleasure, thanks !

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