Thinking that somehow this will refute the people who are criticizing him for inspiring terrorist acts and death threats against people he has targeted for national on-air vilification, Glenn Beck has dug up the peculiar case of Casey Brezik, a mentally ill (diagnosed schizophrenic) 22-year-old who last September tried to slash the throat of a man he mistakenly believed to be the governor of Missouri. (A more dispassionate account is here.)
Well, there's little doubt that Brezik is a far-left anarchist -- but that doesn't place him anywhere within the same political spectrum as mainstream liberals, other than that they are both generically somewhere on the Left. The same as American neo-Nazis are on the Right along with mainstream conservatives.
More to the point, there's no indication that anyone held Democratic Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon up for extreme demonization or that there was political discourse from the Left identifying him as the source of all evil. Rather the contrary. Brezik selected him not because he was inspired by any kind of mainstream liberal rhetoric (particularly not any broadcast on a major news network).
This stands in rather stark contrast to the issues confronting Beck and his reckless and smear-laden demonization of people and institutions in a way that inspires violence.
Because where that is the issue, we have more than one incident. We have many, many more.
Let's just say, for the sake of argument, that Glenn Beck's incident with Brezik is indeed a case of left-wing violence. OK. Now let's place that singular case up against this:
Tom Schaller discussed this in an op-ed in the Baltimore Sun recently, citing my work here:
To my critics, I pose a simple challenge: Produce a comparable list of violent acts or attempted acts during the past two years perpetrated by those who support economic fairness, reproductive choice, universal health care, environmental protection, animal rights or any other liberal cause against corporate executives, pro-life organizers, small business owners or white evangelicals.
Mind you, this list doesn't even begin to assess the threats and assaults, which are so much more voluminous they're much harder to track. (We'll undertake that task shortly.)