Charles Krauthammer writes:
Medicalizing mass murder not only exonerates. It turns the murderer into a victim, indeed a sympathetic one.
Wow — the reliable conservative actually thinks we should be exploring Jared Loughner’s political motives in his attempted assassination on Gabrielle Giffords!
No wait — Krauthammer wrote the above in 2009, in a column criticizing the mainstream media for ignoring the possible political motives of Nidal Hassan, the Ft. Hood gunman. In this week’s column on Loughner, Krauthammer lambastes those who suggest the killer was motivated by the ”climate of hate” created by Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, etc.:
There is no evidence that he was responding to anything, political or otherwise, outside of his own head….
[His] is not political behavior. These are the signs of a clinical thought disorder – ideas disconnected from each other, incoherent, delusional, detached from reality.
These are all the hallmarks of a paranoid schizophrenic. And a dangerous one.
So to recap: When a Muslim goes on a shooting rampage, it’s a political act –and it is “condescending, politically correct and deadly” to talk about his mental health.
But when a wild-eyed white guy targets a Democratic congresswoman in a highly polarized state, it is “absurd” for a journalist to even raise questions about his politics.
In truth, I’m inclined to agree with Krauthammer that Loughner’s rampage was an act of insanity. But it’s also a little nuts that Krauthammer, a psychiatrist, in applying such a glaring double standard to two recent massacres, doesn’t pick up on his very own cognitive dissonance.