My question is, when is “free speech” applied to all? Is it only a vehicle for the right? Some would argue that he was commenting while in his official capacity as Sheriff. I would retort by saying he spoke of the vitriolic hate spewing from radio and cable TV on both sides. He did not single out the “right” soley. His words were deliberate and chosen well, in my opinion.
Neither side of the political spectrum is without fault here.
Huffington Post reports:
Right-wing radio host Jon Justice, who is on KQTH FM 104.1 in Arizona, has called for Dupnik’s resignation and taken issue with the sheriff’s singling-out of talk radio.
On Fox News, Megyn Kelly interviewed the man in charge of the Arizona shooting investigation, Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik. Kelly introduced the interview saying, “it is always a difficult task to try to assign reason to an irrational act, but that is one of the things that Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik is trying to do.”
From there, Kelly was persistent, yet extremely deferential as she expressed the doubts of many who are wondering why the Sheriff is so publicly offering his speculative opinion that “vitriolic rhetoric” helped lead to the tragedy. Although the sheriff had no specific evidence of such rhetoric yet, he claimed there is “no doubt in my mind that when a number of people night and day try to inflame the public, that there’s going to be some consequences from doing that and I think it’s irresponsible to do that.”
When he also warned that “free speech is free speech but it’s not without consequences,” Kelly questioned whether it was appropriate for a sheriff to be injecting their political spin? The sheriff answered that ultimately it’s up to the viewers to decide.
- “Comments from Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik via the AP:” and related posts (scaredmonkeys.com)
- Clarence Dupnik, Arizona Sheriff, Criticized By Sen. Jon Kyl Over Shooting Comments (VIDEO) (huffingtonpost.com)
- “Pima County AZ Sheriff Clarence Dupnik Blames AZ Political Culture” and related posts (arguewitheveryone.com)
- Sheriff: Shooter in custody, seeking person of interest (dailykos.com)
- There’s a new sheriff in town…. (tagg-lines.com)
- Pima Sheriff Clarence Dupnik Calls Out Vitriolic, Hateful Rhetoric (crooksandliars.com)
- Arizona Rampage Could Have Been “Catastrophe’ if Gunman Was Able to Reload (politicsdaily.com)