The left is still playing it
With the scope of dissent against US President Barack Obama continuing to intensify, the political elements that worked so hard to win his election have slowly, over time, awakened to the full extent of the nightmare that is confronting them.
On the domestic front, at least, Obama seems well on his way to becoming every bit as unpopular as George W Bush.
There's an irony in this. Many of those who campaigned on Obama's behalf went to some rather bizarre lengths to pretend that, in defeating Senator John McCain, the Republican nominee, that they were actually beating Bush. Now Obama is facing the same domestic political troubles that a political environment as polarized as that of the United States inevitably produces for any leader.
The results haven't been pretty.
To date, the definitive response of Obama's supporters has been to play a series of cards. The most prominent of these has been the race card, in which those opposing Obama have been accused of being racists, regardless of whether or not their words or actions actually justify the charge.
Another has been the "assassination card".
An interesting case in point has been that of Chris Broughton.
Broughton first began to flirt with international fame when he committed the inherently foolish act of showing up to an Arizona Town Hall meeting at which Obama would be speaking with an AR-15 assault rifle. It wasn't this act alone, however, which garnered him infamy.
It was, rather, the efforts of MSNBC's Contessa Brewer to use footage of him to suggest that an assassination attempt on the President may be imminent.
"There are questions about whether this has racial overtones," Brewer insisted. "I mean, here you have a man of color in the presidency and white people showing up with guns."
The ironic point was that Broughton is actually African American, and that the footage of him was very selectively edited to obscure this fact. This may have gone entirely undetected if not for the presence of CNN reporters at the same event, who interviewed Broughton.
But the left was unwilling to surrender the assassination card, even under the condition of discredit. So the left-wing machine went back to work, and they discovered that Broughton is a member of Reverend Steven Anderson's congregation.
Anderson will be remembered as the individual who delivered the contemptible "spiritual warfare" sermon in which he prayed for Obama's death.
Some left-wing commentators have claimed that the incident is evidence of how "conservative Christian hate speech" (evidently without considering that "Christian hate speech" is an oxymoron) could incite assassination attempts against the President.
Yet those individuals have clearly chosen to overlook the fact that, regardless of how contemptible Anderson's definitively un-Christian sermon is (and it most certainly is), Anderson also called for Obama to die of natural causes.
"I don't want him to be a martyr, we don't need another holiday," Anderson later explained. "I'd like to see him die, like Ted Kennedy, of brain cancer."
Broughton would later state that he "concurs" with Anderson's words.
Certainly, this confirms that race doesn't form the basis of the hatred Anderson worships.
One may recall that, to Contessa Brewer, race was initially supposed to be at the heart of the alleged assassination plots against Obama. Until it turned out that it wasn't race. Then, it was religion.
All of this without an assassination plot in the first place.
But this, it seems, may all be immaterial. What matters most to many of these activists isn't whether or not such claims are truthful, but whether or not they can use them to help demonize any conservative opposition whatsoever, regardless of whether that comes from extreme conservative elements -- like Reverend Steven Anderson -- or from more moderate conservative elements that are simply alarmed about the direction in which Barack Obama is trying to take their country.
The assassination card, as any rational individual knows, isn't about fear of an assassination. It's about fear of dissent, and about doing anything possible to marginalize it.