A day or two after Ms. Palin posted that image on her Facebook page, Rep. Giffords' office was vandalized. She talked about the crosshairs placed on her district in light of the vandalism:
We really need to realize, the rhetoric and firing people up, and even things, for example, we're on Sarah Palin's 'targeted list.' But the thing is, the way she has it depicted has the crosshairs of a gunsight over our district. And when people do that, they've got to realize there's consequences to that action.
It's really a sad day for Tucson, Arizona, and the United States. In attempt to make us all laugh in light of this tragedy, right wing media darling Michelle Malkin tried to point the finger at liberals for being equally violent, or at least violent-minded. Her first example: Comments made by a regular person who blogs on Daily Kos. She posted a screen shot of a post entitled My CongressWOMAN Voted Against Nancy Pelosi! And is Now DEAD to Me!, which is a rant against the Congresswoman by someone who raised money and donated to her campaign and was disappointed by her decision not to vote for Pelosi for Minority Leader. That user has since deleted the post and stated the following:
i now am FULL of guilt after writing this diary.
I kind of feel bad that this person feels guilty about what they said, especially when this person isn't and never was an elected official, prevalent voice in any national political movement, or potential presidential candidate. But even they can own up to something unsavory that they said about a Congresswoman. Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas used the term "bulls eye" in the following quote in a post he authored over 2 years ago about FISA (and as we know, nobody vandalized Rep. Giffords' office -- or anyone else's -- within 48 hours -- or 30 months -- of that vote):
Not all of these people will get or even deserve primaries, but this vote certainly puts a bulls eye on their district. If we can field enough serious challengers, and if we repeat the Donna Edwards and Joe Lieberman stories a few more times, well then, our elected officials might have no choice but to be more responsive. Because if we show them that their AT&T lobbyist buddies can't save their jobs, they'll pay more attention to those who can.
Any reasonable individual reading this quote wouldn't seriously believe that Mr. Moulitsas is suggesting that Rep. Giffords, or the other 100+ Democrats on that list, be targeted for violence. He's talking about voting lukewarm Democrats out of office, and specifically states that he doesn't support saving their JOBS, whereas the crosshairs picture makes no mention of voting people out, and depicts blood red crosshairs to symbolize Representatives whose political careers are over (you might say "dead").
Lastly, Ms. Malkin compares the crosshairs image to one used by the Democratic Leadership Council in 2004.
And, with my powerful ability to remember the past 6 years, not a single conservative elected government official from any of those states was a target of violence by radicals, liberal or otherwise. Furthermore, nobody was mentioned by name in that map, unlike in Sarah Palin's crosshairs map. However, Michelle Malkin believes that those targets somehow advocated or still advocate violence against conservative office holders in America, even though Barack Obama won 7 out of 9 of those states in 2008 (without a single progressive shooting a single congressperson! We're either really great terrorists, or the threat doesn't exist).
I find such comparisons to be disingenuous and hilariously absurd. The target used in the DLC map is one that people shoot arrows at. Crosshairs aren't targets. Crosshairs are used to get a kill shot on a specific target. What does Malkin think? Bow and arrow toting progressives are going to shoot conservatives? We're going to advocate a constitutional amendment to our right to bear bows and arrows? Are we going to petition governments to open carry our bows and arrows at political events? Are we going to support measures that allow us to carry a concealed bow and arrow without a permit (Good luck with that, liberals! Bows and arrows are bulky!)? Why does she think the Native Americans lost? Because bows and arrows are no match for guns!