On CNN‘s Reliable Sources, Mediaite’s Rachel Sklar and conservative radio host Steve Malzberg debated whether excited rhetoric from politicians and media personalities helped to contribute to a climate where the Arizona shooting could take place. Malzberg was quick to point out that aggressive language is used by President Obama and Michelle Obama just as readily as conservatives, while Sklar was in favor of everyone “dialing back” the use of violent imagery.
Sklar criticized Sarah Palin for an “irresponsible use of imagery” with her controversial congressional target map, but did not say the shooting was Palin’s fault. Instead she hoped Palin would say “I’m a leader, I should lead responsibly and set a great example” and avoid the use of such images in the future. When asked whether he was willing to tone down his language in the future, Malzberg disputed the premise that his language needed toning down. Furthermore, with a President who is “still going to try to rule everything he wants to rule,” Malzberg believed toning down his language would hinder his ability to adequately combat Obama’s agenda.
An interesting discussion, and one that will likely continue as more is learned about how much potentially violent rhetoric, if any, actually influenced the shooter.
Watch the clip from CNN below:
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