MEDIA
01/18/2011 08:14 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Olbermann's Arizona Special Comment: The Right Is Using More Violent Rhetoric Than Before Shooting (VIDEO)

Keith Olbermann gave a special comment about the Arizona shooting nine days after his last one, which took place on the same Saturday the shooting occurred. Olbermann began by reminding viewers of his apology for anything he had said which may have "even inadvertently encouraged violence." But he expressed his anger that, in his view, only one other person had apologized in the same way.

"To date, only one commentator or politician has expressed the slightest introspection," he said, before revealing the surprising person he was talking about: John McCain, who Olbermann quoted as saying that "our political discourse...should be more civil than it currently is, and we all, myself included, bear some responsibility for it not being so."

"That's it," Olbermann said. "It's me and John McCain...so what did everybody else say? They said it was everybody else's fault. And they often said it with more violence than before."

Olbermann then ran through a long list of blog postings and comments on radio shows and Internet videos from conservative writers and commentators to show what he had been talking about. After having finished the list of examples, Olbermann wrapped up the special comment by summing up what he thought America had learned in the nine days since the shooting:

"We learn that the right doesn't even recognize the irony of its claim of being unfairly blamed for the violence of others, when it has spent the last several years doing exactly that to Muslims -- particularly American Muslims. We also learn that the right can simultaneously insist no political party or inclination can be blamed for Tucson -- while it itself blames the Democratic party and the left, for Tucson.

We learn that the right does not understand that if you -- if we-- foment a political environment in which politics are to be settled by violence, or the threat of violence, or in a rhetorical tide of violent imagery, it no longer matters what those politics specifically are, or if the hearer even understands your politics or agrees with your politics -- he may hear only the permission to be violent.

And ultimately we learn...this template of what the right would do in an actual open-and-shut slam dunk case in which a partisan of the right attempted to kill one of the left. The right would blame that victim, blame him or her for not having brought enough security. Or for not having brought a gun."

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