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Topic: Culture & Communities     Department: Letters

Misplaced blame

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As a longtime subscriber, I was disturbed by the article by Tom Zoellner, and by his efforts to demonize those he disagrees with (HCN, 2/20/12, "Extreme Arizona").

The shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was not a political assassination. Rather, it was a delusional act of a schizophrenic in a psychotic episode. That Mr. Zoellner would assign blame to conservatives is a reflection of the hatred he harbors, not the political movement he so hates. Shame on High Country News for publishing this screed and advancing the notion that conservatives are responsible for the actions of a severely mentally disabled individual.

R. Barry Crook
Aspen, Colorado

Mike & Lorri Benefield
Mike & Lorri Benefield Subscriber
Mar 18, 2012 11:57 AM
I would like to take this opportunity confront Mr. Crook on his defense of conservatism while it's implications get played out in negative ways all over this nation. Arizona is the logical outcome of conservative thought. There should be no illusions, no hand wringing, no crass indignation like Mr. Crook exhibits from on high in Aspen. Mr. Zoellner only served to illustrate that context and environment serve to create the conditions necessary for the mentally ill to do what they are at liberty to act out.
Arizona is a haven for the mentally ill and conservatives. Arizona did not become what it is by accident, it is the result of the politics and social outlook of it's citizens. There is a little bit of Arizona in every state, and as long as no one takes a stand to the contrary, like Representative Giffords did, I can see nothing but Arizona in our future as Americans.

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