A Word In Edgewise: Sticks and Stones and Words — Can Kill You


No doubt bipedal humanoids have used hateful speech to harm others as soon as they learned to to communicate with grunts and clicks.

That’s how voodoo really works. Plant a dark suggestion in a pliant mind, and the target believes and declines. It works at home: tell your child he or she is ugly, stupid, unlovable, and they will believe. The harm may be unintentional, thoughtless; regretted the second it’s uttered. But once it has hit the target, the damage is done..

What about words calculated and carefully aimed? It is criminally disingenuous for those spewing hatred today — in the media, on television, in political speeches — to claim that none of their words have any effect, that none of the shooters who have slaughtered dozens of innocents in just the past several weeks (how many more between this writing and its publication?) have not been fueled to some degree by their careless and unfounded rants?

How can one not believe that the lying, cobbled-together film on Planned Parenthood’s practices, proven to be false, did not in some way prompt the shooter to injure many and kill three while muttering “No more baby parts”?

Others from political and church forums are calling for the killing of presumed terrorists, one in particular for the wholesale killing of terrorists’ families, not specifying whether these would include the extermination of parents and siblings of our home-grown, white terrorists.

All these killings urged by a supposedly Christian group of average Americans and patriotic politicians. They’ll have to be timed carefully to work with others who have their own killing agendas, like the man of the cloth who recently called for the killing of all gays before Christmas (If you are reading this, he may have bumped his target date to, say, Valentine’s Day in 2016).

What to say? The cause and effect are obvious, to this writer, but of course the hate-mongers won’t agree. One, in the aftermath of the San Bernardino massacre, accused Planned Parenthood. (Though that Colorado pol may now face a recall).

The question is: does that individual, and the others, calling for death and laying blame wildly about themselves on whomever they wish to tarnish, really believe what they’re saying? If so, then what kind of mass delusion or insanity has overtaken segments of our population? If not, and she and so many others are lying, using outright lies to tarnish reputations and worse; to urge the killing of hundreds, even thousands. What is their agenda?

The hate-speak is not going to stop, and the sane thing to do is not to retaliate with a, “Why you lying…” but to ferret out what exactly their goals are. Screaming hateful things at cancer won’t effect a cure.

Cui bono? Who wins, and why are they choosing this tactic? Without that knowledge, there will be no firm ground, no toe-hold from which to fight back and stop them cold.

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