Just hours ago, U.S. Representative Steve Scalise was one of five people shot at a park in Alexandria, VA while Senators and Representatives were practicing for their upcoming charity baseball game. Key takeaways so far:
- Scalise is in stable condition and looks like he will be ok
- The gunman was taken into custody
- Over 40 shots were fired in the encounter, spanning around ten minutes
- Capitol Police were on scene and seem to have been key in preventing a massacre
Already this morning, there have been numerous eyewitness accounts that are just fascinating to hear. Sen. Rand Paul, for instance, described the dramatic scene.
Of course, numerous tweets have extended sympathies across the political spectrum. However, it is always interesting to see a bit into the minds of crazed partisans:
This event is sure to kick off another round of “debate” over gun violence and gun control legislation. What will be interesting is how the debate takes shape, given that the target(s) appear to be Republicans. Will this prompt some in the GOP to shift to a more gun-grabbing mentality? How will the left deal with their own language being thrown back in their face?
It’s the latter question that interests me the most. For years, every time there is a widely-publicized shooting, we hear bromides trotted out about how the right’s “violent rhetoric” contributes to gun violence. The theory is that such rhetoric encourages the crazies to take action. But this shooting, as well as more recent attacks on Trump supporters in Oakland, Los Angeles, and elsewhere seem to turn the tables a bit. Does this theory go the other way? Will the left and Democrats acknowledge and address the voices in their own ranks can drive their crazies to do bad things?
I won’t hold my breath.