Scott Tibbs
blog post
April 18th, 2005

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Dan Carpenter makes light of terrorism

In the April 13 Indianapolis Star, Dan Carpenter writes a column mocking the outrage by conservatives over assaults on David Horowitz and Bill Kristol. Last October, a similar incident happened involving Ann Coulter. (See previous posts here, here and here.)

For excerpts of Carpenter's column and two letters to the editor responding to it, visit the forum.

Before the assault on Coulter, I was considering casting a protest vote for Libertarian Presidential candidate Michael Badnarik. After so many on the Left made light of assault on Coulter, I knew that the only person I could vote for was George W. Bush. Even though Bush was going to win Indiana easily with or without my vote, I wanted to make sure that my vote was counted in support of the President.


I think the assaults on Coulter showed, and the attacks on Kristol and Horowitz reinforced, that the Left does not understand the danger of terrorism. President Bush, however, does understand terrorism and the fact that it must be taken seriously.

Make no mistake about it: the assaults on Coulter, Kristol and Horowitz were terrorism. The thugs who assaulted and attempted to humiliate Coulter, Kristol and Horowitz were pursuing a common goal: repression of political speech opposed to their own views. Assaults on conservative speakers creates a chilling effect on political speech, especially when conservatives are so outnumbered on college campi (as Rush Limbaugh would say) already. Why would a conservative pundit want to expose himself to an assault by Leftist thugs who have no interest in a legitimate discussion of issues?

Today, Leftists thugs may "only" be throwing pies at conservative speakers. Tomorrow, it may be something more serious. When prominent Leftists laugh off assaults on conservatives, it encourages thugs to up the ante. Exactly how far can these thugs go before they will be punished? Eleven years ago, pro-abortion radicals vomited on a speaker brought in by IU students for Life. Would this be laughed off as well, if it happened today?

An act of violence need not result in death or injury to be a terrorist act. In 2000, The Earth Liberation Front attempted to burn down the headquarters of the Monroe county Republican Party to protest I-69. No human beings were hurt, but this was clearly a terrorist act.

Today's "harmless" pie in the face may be tomorrow's fist, knife or gun. Terrorism is terrorism, and must be met with zero tolerance. Reasonable people must draw a line in the sand and make it clear that acts of violence have no place in political discourse and will be met with severe repercussions. When the world Trade Center fell, I thought that this would finally make everyone realize why we must take a zero-tolerance stand against terror. Sadly, some have not learned the lessons of September 11.