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The Dallas Shootings Are An Attack At The Heart Of America

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The Dallas Shootings Are An Attack At The Heart Of America

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The events in Dallas are devastating to all Americans, to the city of Dallas, and most of all to law enforcement officers targeted for their commitment to public service.

Eleven officers were shot and of those five are now dead. The shootings were a coordinated attack against the police, and they seemed to have been organized to take advantage of the police presence at a #BlackLivesMatter protest that was happening in the downtown area. Early reports indicate that one of the shooters later told police he wanted to kill white police officers, though that he was not associated with any group or movement.

The shooters kept the incident going for hours by creating a stand-off situation with police, delaying by claiming they had placed bombs around downtown Dallas. This ensured local and national TV news (and the Internet) covered it live, giving every political candidate a platform to air their message.

In a political sense, then, what happened in Dallas was an attack on the police, and on the very notion of law and order itself. It was also, crucially, an attack on public political discourse: Protesting our government in public, is a first amendment right, and in Dallas, protestors and the police were co-operating in exercising that right, together, prior to the first shots being fired.

Dallas police were protecting the protesters’ constitutional rights, as they do with all protestors. The shooters attacked our political system. For all of our political system’s misuse of this word, these attacks were terrorism in the clearest sense.

These attacks were meant to promote violence as a political strategy, undercutting the legitimacy of our whole system in the midst of one of the most divisive election seasons in recent history.

America’s founders certainly didn’t anticipate the creation of high-powered, large-caliber, widely-available semi-automatic assault rifles like those used in Dallas. But they also did not account for the speed at which 24-hour news and social media would weaponize anger and hatred, in this case in a terrorist attack against Dallas police.

The shooters used media coverage of their actions to broadcast violence as a political strategy, suppress public debate, and inflame tensions on both sides of a heavily divided political discussion about the police. We cannot take part in a violent political debate, physically or ideologically — that would be rewarding the shooters’ actions.

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34 Comments

  1. Otto T. Goat July 8, 2016

    Obama, liberals, and the media incited this attack.

    Reply
    1. johninPCFL July 8, 2016

      Just a few patriots exercising their second amendment rights to criticize the government, just like Brewer advised would be necessary.

    2. King of America July 9, 2016

      Nah, it was the gunhumping white supremacist babyman culture you belong to.

    3. Bill P July 9, 2016

      That is just another load of your ignorant and juvenile mind. You have nothing of value to add to the conversation just typical right wing bullshit. The Dallas shooter is obviously deranged just like the Charleston shooter, Colorado Springs and others. Oh that’s right they were white, if it’s a black shooter he is a terrorist.

  2. RED July 8, 2016

    Couldn’t get past the first paragraph! One the writer started in on the cops committed to public service crap, it was over. And until we stop pretending that it’s public service drawing these violent sociopaths to policing instead of the real truth or that’s it’s just a few bad apples crap, it’s never going to stop.

    Reply
  3. Otto T. Goat July 8, 2016

    I’m glad cops shot Alton Sterling. He was fat yard ape and convicted child rapist.

    Reply
    1. dpaano July 8, 2016

      And you are a jackass!!!

  4. Oddworld July 8, 2016

    What happened in Dallas is tragic and disgusting on many levels but the author should have refrained from making such statements as “America’s founders certainly didn’t anticipate the creation of high-powered, large-caliber, widely-available, semi-automatic assault rifles like those used in Dallas,” “The shooters attacked our political system” and “these attacks were terrorism in the clearest sense.” First off, this shooting isn’t about gun-rights or the types of guns used, the shooters could have just as easily achieved the same results using non-automatic rifles.
    They were sniping which doesn’t require the type of weapons described being used in this article. Second,
    this doesn’t fit the original definition of terrorism, we must abstain from broadening the true definition and criteria of terrorism just to meet our own agendas. There is no evidence the shooters had any political aims outside of their own warped desires to get even.

    Until we know for sure all the details, it is irresponsible to draw any conclusions based on knee jerk reactions
    and personal perceptions.

    Reply
    1. stcroixcarp July 8, 2016

      Yes, it is about gun rights! Yes, what these shooters did was terrorism! Sadly, this is another Pogo moment, “We have met the enemy and he is us!”

      1. Oddworld July 8, 2016

        I’m not familiar with the term “Pogo moment”, could you clarify? And in regards to my statements, I stand by them. This
        was a violent murder perpetrated
        I believe by criminals who thought they could capitalize on social discourse. That doesn’t mean they were criminals before they committed themselves to murdering cops. One of them claims he doesn’t have an affiliation with any groups or movements. Call this whatever else you choose but so far it doesn’t fit the classic definition of terrorism but things may change as more info is presented. Our problem is we keep broadening criteria for what something means, when does it stop!

        I’ve read some of your other posts, you said in one “The Second Amendment be damned”. So are you saying you’re willing to abolish the 2nd Amendment and seize all guns? Make no mistake about my position, I don’t own a firearm and hope to never have to. I hate the entire gun cultural mentality but we can’t
        just sweep it aside and turn every gun owner in America into a criminal. Most of them are honest law abiding citizens, some will resort to violence they’re pushed too far. The only solution is an America that works for everyone, not some, not one side or the other but all of us.
        That will take a long time but that is the real challenge we face.

        1. stcroixcarp July 8, 2016

          Sorry you missed out on the 60’s. Pogo was a popular cartoon during the Vietnam War. As you probably know it was a violent time with the Civil Rights Movement, the Hippies, the Vietnam War Protesters, the Black Panthers, the KKK, etc. we were at each other’s throats. As a young teacher, i remember many credible bomb threats where we had to evacuate the buildings and try to protect the kids. Anyway I had one Pogo cartoon taped to my desk. Pogo is explaining things to his critter friend. ” We have met the enemy and he is us.”
          About the Second Amendment, No I do not think that all guns should be confiscated, but I do believe that we need to reevaluate the unintended consequences of the latest Supreme Court ruling which gun fanatics have interpreted that all guns are equal, and all people have a right to carry guns where ever and whenever they please and have the right to shoot anyone who makes them “feel afraid”. The NRA is no longer an advocate for hunters and sportsmen that promotes gun safety and recreational use of guns. It is now a schill and a very powerful lobby for the gun manufacturers and gun runners and a promoter of international gun running. We need to look critically at the second amendment. We need to get guns out of the hands of terrorists, the mentally ill, domestic abusers, criminals. we need background checks and liability insurance that will cover the horrendous expenses incurred by the victims of gun violence and local civic governments that need to clean up the mess created by gun violence. What I am saying is that we need common sense approach to guns that values the lives of real living human beings over the “rights” of inanimate objects, i.e, guns.

          1. Oddworld July 8, 2016

            Thanks for clearing that up stcroixcarp. I looked it up earlier and found something pertaining to a cartoon
            and became even more confused. Pogo moment does seem to describe it adequately. History is repeating itself in every manner you have described. Those elements never went away, rather they only went into hiding and the internet now serves as the tool for discontentment. Internet is a curse and a blessing. Fight the good fight my friend and remember “vigilance”…

          2. stcroixcarp July 8, 2016

            Peace. Friend.

    1. Hot Medusa July 10, 2016

      Mmkay. Your point is?

    2. Hot Medusa July 10, 2016

      Again. Your point?

    3. johninPCFL July 11, 2016

      Aren’t you happy he knew his second amendment rights? How odd for a con.

  5. AgLander July 8, 2016

    It’s fortunate that Hillary Clinton wasn’t the shooter because we all know she never gets charged with anything since she never “intends” to commit a crime, it just happens!

    Reply
    1. King of America July 9, 2016

      Yes, you hate America and anyone that isn’t white. We get it.

      1. Elena Hamilton July 9, 2016

        <<o. ✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:✸✸✸✸✸:::::::!uf464w:….,…..

      2. AgLander July 9, 2016

        Did you just claim that Hillary Clinton is not white? Please, tell us more!

        1. King of America July 9, 2016

          Sorry you can’t read good! Probably because you’re home-schooled.

          1. AgLander July 9, 2016

            Oh, I “read” you perfectly, friend. Your education gap is obvious in your lack of reading comprehension…..you should have stuck around and went for your GED.

          2. King of America July 9, 2016

            Yes, it is evident you don’t comprehend advanced concepts, such as words.

    2. Bill P July 9, 2016

      As usual you offer nothing positive to the conversation just your old tired bullshit. Always amazed how you right wing trolls don’t like it when an investigation doesn’t show the results you wanted. All you can do is write your juvenile comments.

    3. johninPCFL July 11, 2016

      Apparently you missed all of the salient points in the Congressional inquiry with Comey. You should perhaps just sit quietly while the adults talk.

      1. AgLander July 11, 2016

        Comey didn’t indict her, but he did convict her with his words, dummy…..did you not watch the congressional inquiry you referred to? Now back to the kiddie room with you…….
        http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/05/politics/fbi-clinton-email-server-comey-damning-lines/

        1. johninPCFL July 11, 2016

          What he ACTUALLY said was that there were three emails that were “border classified” of over 60,000 total. Those emails were repeated (think: reply all) in 52 chains. Those 52 chains comprised 110 emails in total. “Border classified” means that someone drew an arc in the border of a sheet identifying (or highlighting) a section, then put a “C” next to the arc.
          So, in short: Fred Dinkleberry classified three emails at the copy machine with his red pen and sent them to Clinton and several other staffers. She and they replied. He replied again. Voila: 110 emails that should never have been classified in the first place.

          1. AgLander July 11, 2016

            It’s obvious you didn’t see the hearing or check the link but are relying on the “Clinton spin” supplied to you by the DNC which is O.K. because polls show 60% of Americans think she should have been indicted which means she is heading for the ultimate conviction this November and will never step foot in the White House with her pervert husband.

          2. johninPCFL July 11, 2016

            Sorry, I watched the “hearing”, and saw nothing indicating that Comey had anything more.
            Since you’ve been so wrong about everything else, I hope you are rehearsing “yes, madam president” for January.

          3. Maura July 12, 2016

            Indicted for what?

        2. Maura July 12, 2016

          Comey was playing politics because he is a Republican and knew the GOP would be sore as a result of his findings. He was engaging in something called CYA. He has subsequently been found to have been wrong on the emails. There were ZERO emails that could be found to have been have the bore markings of classification. HRC has been totally exonerated. She was right and his being an ass and giving a powerful woman a public dressing down just shows he’s a partisan creep and a misogynist. If he’d found something to indict her for, he sure as HELL would have.

          1. AgLander July 12, 2016

            sorry, honey…….you gonna report me for this too??!

            http://www.cnn.com/2016/07/05/politics/fbi-clinton-email-server-comey-damning-lines/

            In addition 60% of Americans believe she should have been indicted which makes her a current day O.J.!

            She’ll get her just punishment in November, however, since 60% of the country wanted her charged……they get it.

            You don’t of course see anything over there in la la lemming land!

  6. johninPCFL July 11, 2016

    So, even days later, the media still can’t get it right: “The shooters kept the incident going for hours”. It wasn’t “the shooters” or “these attacks”, it was this shooter and this attack.

    Reply

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