Political assassinations have existed for many centuries, even long before the murder of Roman Emperor Julius Caesar. There is also a long history of trying to kill members of a ruling body, again going back to the murder of some of the ancient Roman senators and Greek statesmen.
Our own American history has been shaped by political assassination and assassination attempts. Did you know that there were several attempts to kill Abraham Lincoln before John Wilkes Booth fatally shot the Republican president who freed the slaves?
In 1901, President William McKinley was assassinated by Leon Czolgosz, a self-professed anarchist, who reminds me of James Hodgkinson, the man who tried to kill Republican members of Congress last week at a baseball field in Virginia. No one seems to be willing to define him as an anarchist, but in essence, that’s what his socialist views were and it explains his actions.
In today’s sophisticated and modern society, the idea of a political assassination is grotesque, repulsive, shocking and yet all too real, as the nation found out last week. The image of Rep. Steve Scalise, lying on the baseball field after being shot by Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders’ supporter and fellow socialist, brings the reality of political assassination back to the forefront of our thoughts.
Sadly, a number of left-wing radicals have come out with calls for more shootings of Republicans in Congress. One whacko posted a call to hunt Republicans while others made Republican hit lists, with good ole President Donald Trump as the number one target. Frighteningly, there are enough left-wing extremists who will pick up the challenge. There is no doubt that Republican lawmakers in Washington DC and perhaps at the state level, have become targets for demented Democrats.
But what can a politician do to protect him or herself? In most instances around the nation, they are not allowed to carry a firearm for self-protection. Instead, they have to rely on police, security guards and even Secret Service to protect them.
At least one member of Congress is taking a step to offer self-protection for his fellow lawmakers, if they choose. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) announced that sometime this week, he will introduce a bill into the House that if passed and signed into law, would allow members of the House and Senate to carry a firearm if they choose to do so.
Brooks was at the baseball field, joining in the practice for the charity game, when Hodgkinson opened fire, shooting Scalise and three others. He felt helpless without any means of self-protection or a way to stop the shooting.
Speaking to the media over the weekend, Brooks stated:
“Right now when we’re in Washington, D.C., once we’re off the complex … we’re still high-profile targets, but we have absolutely no way to defend ourselves because of Washington, D.C.’s rather restrictive gun laws.”
“You’ve got a situation where, yes, this one shooter has been killed, but he’s a member of an organization that applauded what transpired on Wednesday, and so those of us who are on this assassination list … it behooves us to be a little bit more wary than we otherwise might be.”
So, what do you think? Should members of Congress be allowed to carry firearms for self-protection, especially in the wake of what happened and the call to shoot more Republicans?
I say yes. It’s time for Republicans to start shooting back and if that means with a gun and real bullets to protect their lives and the lives of their colleagues, then, yes, let them arm themselves!