Pistol

Matt Taibbi zooms out. He blames the media, himself included, for "a hypercharged, rhetorically overheated political atmosphere":

Most all of us are grownups and can handle extreme argument, but clearly some people are not, and obviously I'm not just talking about Jared Loughner.

To see that, all you have to do is attend almost any family gathering, where once-loving relationships have been completely lost because of the overheated right-left culture war. If real family relationships are being lost to this kind of political debate, if someone on TV can reach into your living room and break up your family without knowing anything about you or even knowing that you exist, that tells us that this mechanized mass-media rhetoric has been almost unimaginably successful at dehumanizing whole classes of people.

(Illustration: a new PSA ad on gun violence featuring the work of Francois Robert.)

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