Last Friday my wife and I went out to eat at our favorite restaurant. As we sat down I did not pay attention to the table behind me, but as I ate I began to feel under assault, for the man facing me had a loud voice. After "the Republicans ... healthcare ... insurance" washed over my ears several times I started listening. "You shouldn't lose your health insurance just because you lose your job ... My friend's on Medicare now and loves it. Lot better than a money-grubbing private insurance company ... They had 25,000 at the protest, and no one knows how many of them were illegals. Probably a lot ... Wonder why they don't arrange to have someone shoot Sheriff Joe [Arpaio] and have a plane standing by. Hustle the guy on the plane and take him down to Mexico City and he could disappear-they'd never find him ... Yeah, Joe would get what he has coming." Delivered not in a what-if attitude of speculation but an if-only tone of regret. The speaker was serious, dead serious.
Since we were sittings just blocks from a large state university, I assumed they must be scraggly college kids enrolled in Anarchy 101. So when they got up and left I had a shock: two bald headed gentlemen in their 60s, in conservative, casual dress.
Now come columns on CNN and the Huffington Post urging President Obama to "go gangsta" and "break kneecaps." These are the people that waxed hysterical about Bush "shredding the Constitution," over waterboarding of terrorists, but kneecapping Republicans or killing a sheriff? Sure, for the greater good. What is it about peaceniks that makes them so violent? Henry Percy is the nom de guerre for a technical writer living in Arizona. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.