[Side note: Be sure to catch the, um, startling segue at the end of the video. This came at the very end of Cavuto's show. It'll make you laugh. -- Ed.]
Neil Cavuto has had enough, and doggone it, we should just quit the introspection and blame the crazy. Because you know, John Wilkes Booth didn't have talk radio, or chalkboards, or Fox News, or MSNBC, but he still shot Abraham Lincoln.
Yes, he really said that, which means to me that he also hasn't cracked a history book in a long, long time.
Forget Cavuto's effort to make us think insanity happens in a bubble outside the world we live in. His John Wilkes Booth analogy falls on its face right out of the gate, because John Wilkes Booth may not have had talk radio, but he did have access to the Secret Service, and the high echelons of the Confederacy.
John Wilkes Booth was a spy for the Confederate cause. As an actor, he had access to people and places others might not have and used his skills to shuttle information back to Confederate generals throughout the war. He wasn't crazy; he was a traitor.
This was what he believed:
"This country was formed for the white not for the black man. And looking upon African slavery from the same stand-point, as held by those noble framers of our Constitution, I for one, have ever considered it, one of the greatest blessings (both for themselves and us) that God ever bestowed upon a favored nation."
Not all that far off from some things we've heard in the past two years, is it?
Booth's association with the Confederacy was not recent, either. He had functioned as a double agent at the hanging of John Brown. He donned a militia uniform and assumed the role of guard, to make sure there were no attempts to rescue Brown ahead of the hanging. That was in 1859. Throughout the war, he was an ardent sympathizer and spy, and when he saw an opportunity, he aimed his gun and assassinated the President of the United States because he (violently) did not agree with him.
Not because he was "nutcase." This wasn't an "isolated incident."
What an unfortunate analogy for Cavuto to make. I can't think of one more inappropriate than that one, given Booth's role and attitude toward Lincoln. Booth was as sane as the rest of us. He was simply angry that the North had prevailed -- so angry he plotted and succeeded at assassinating Lincoln.
And why did he choose Booth? Because there was talk radio and hate talk when JFK and RFK were assassinated? Because there is talk radio and hate talk now? Because there are many, many similarities between the toxicity of today's airwaves and those of the 1960's?
But no. Instead he chooses one of the most sane and rational assassins in American history to argue his case that Saturday's shooting was just another lunatic gone crazy.