Drudge Headline Infers Tuscon Sheriff Blames Limbaugh for Massacre

Posted on January 10, 2011

Matt Drudge is pushing the envelope as a journalist by asking the rhetorical question in a banner headline “Sheriff” Blames Rush Limbaugh for Massacre?

Here is the quote in its entirety from Tuscon Sheriff, Clarence Dupnik:

“The kind of rhetoric that flows from people like Rush Limbaugh, in my judgment he is irresponsible, uses partial information, sometimes wrong information,” Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said today. “[Limbaugh] attacks people, angers them against government, angers them against elected officials and that kind of behavior in my opinion is not without consequences.”

Limbaugh today railed against the media and Dupnik for trying to draw a link between the heated political climate and the shooting rampage, calling the sheriff a “fool.” But Dupnik stood by his assertions.

“The vitriol affects the [unstable] personality that we are talking about,” he said. “You can say, ‘Oh no, it doesn’t,’ but my opinion is that it does.”

Investigators have yet to determine what motivated 22-year-old Jared Lee Loughner, described by some as appearing to be mentally unstable, to allegedly open fire on the crowd outside the Tucson Safeway. However, so far there is no evidence that he has any ties to any political group. [ABC News]

The Sheriff called Limbaugh “irresponsible” not responsible.

However, for the Sheriff  to get into the motivation of the shooter before the investigation has been completed that he himself will be heading is both unprofessional andadds fuel to the flame.  He is in a position of authority and there are those who misguided souls who will be influenced by his opinion.

The relation of the Sheriff speaking out prematurely with the Gates affair in Cambridge that saw the President himself speak out before all the evidence was in is clear.  It seems these days that persons involved in or with some stake in the outcome of an incident try early on in the process to grab media attention and start down the road of trying to manipulate it to influence he public.

We need a new national law in the land: the anti-media manipulation measure.  It should keep all discussion of a matter under investigation under wraps.  To do otherwise is ALWAYS misleading and self-serving.  Worse, it really indicates that who ever is doing the talking prematurely really doesn’t know what he/she is talking about.

We not only need to tone down the rhetoric; we need to put it aside for a time. Less is more right now.  In Tuscon,  people need to grieve not jockey for publicity position.  After a tragedy all we have to do is call 911.  We don’t have to hold a press conference – even one from the rose garden there on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Posted in: CRIME