Democratic congressman: Gabrielle Giffords shooting ‘the start of the revolution’

Jeff Poor Media Reporter
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Were the heinous acts that occurred on Jan. 8 in Arizona the product of an isolated deranged mind, or were they the spark of something scarier with more violent implications?

According to California Democratic Rep. Bob Filner, it’s something on a much grander scale that people should take very seriously. On MSNBC’s Wednesday night airing of “The Last Word,” host Lawrence O’Donnell asked the U.S. representative for California’s 51st congressional district if there could be anti-Semitism involved in last weekend’s tragedy.

“Congressman, this weekend when you saw what happened to Gabrielle Giffords, who you know well, you also know to be Jewish like yourself, you discover as the evidence unfolds that ‘Mein Kampf’ is one of the shooter’s favorite books,” O’Donnell said. “There had to be a feeling of this was coming.”

As Filner explained, based on his wide-ranging experience – including being active in last century’s civil rights movement and more recent events, the Tucson tragedy was something that was inevitable.

”To me, I thought this was inevitable, Lawrence,” Filner said. “And to me, I had been active in the civil rights movements, the ‘50s and ‘60s. I have been in mobs. I’ve been beaten up. These people were intent on violence. You didn’t hear the words about anti-Semitic comments there. But only the intervention of police rescued me at that point. And my son and my granddaughter were scared to death. They were in the audience there just trembling. I went back to my civil rights roots to figure out how I would lay down and curl up.”


Prior to President Barack Obama’s address at a memorial service paying tribute to the victims at the University of Arizona, historian Douglas Brinkley said the tragedy would rank up with the Civil Rights Era events in Selma and Birmingham in the historic overview. However, Filner made that prognostication pale by comparison.

“The next day, Lawrence, and also right after Gabby’s shooting, there were blogs to say that clearly politics doesn’t work for us because Filner the sneaky Jewish guy obviously defrauded us, and we have to go to violence. And here`s some AK-47s; here`s how you do sniper work. And that was repeated a couple days ago with — when they said this is the start of the revolution, the shooting of Gabby Giffords. So this is not an isolated incident. Everybody who tries to put it off on a deranged individual I think is — that’s a political statement in and of itself, because they are absolving themselves of the responsibility of their words and their actions.”