Prominent Republican Sarah Palin defended her fiery rhetoric on Wednesday but ignited a fresh controversy by accusing critics of “blood libel” in linking her to a deadly Arizona shooting spree.
A defiant Palin, leaping into a roaring debate on the consequences of overheated political rhetoric, said her critics had been irresponsible in rushing to blame Saturday’s gun rampage on vitriolic campaign speech.
“Especially within hours of a tragedy unfolding, journalists and pundits should not manufacture a blood libel that serves only to incite the very hatred and violence they purport to condemn,” Palin, a potential 2012 White House contender, said in a video posted to her Facebook page.
Palin’s reference to “blood libel,” a false, centuries-old allegation that Jews were killing children to use their blood in religious rituals, launched a new round of criticism of Palin’s rhetoric.
“We wish that Palin had used another phrase, instead of one so fraught with pain in Jewish history,” said Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League.
The accusation of “blood libel” has been employed for centuries to justify the killing or expulsion of Jews. The phrase had been used by other conservative commentators, including a Wall Street Journal column, since the shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords, who is Jewish.
“Perhaps Palin honestly does not know what a blood libel is, or does not know of their horrific history — that is perhaps the most charitable explanation we can arrive at,” said David Harris, president of the National Jewish Democratic Council…
“Palin’s invocation of a ‘blood libel’ charge against her perceived enemies is hardly a step in the right direction,” Harris said.
This blivet has been criticized not only by the Left, but moderate and conservative political voices for her butt-kissing of gun-nuts and redneck posses ever since she ventured into the not-so-civilized world of politics. She not only gives Alaska, the Republican Party and fiscal conservatives a bad name, her upbringing in the bosom of truly nutball fundamentalist religious sects makes just another bigoted remark like this a natural for her.
When do we get to see a self-produced video of her speaking in tongues the revealed word of Yaweh? While clutching a copy of the Protocols of Zion?