The Peach

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Compassionate Conservatism

Principle #1: Blame the victim. In the aftermath of the school killings in Russia, Dick Cheney had some inspirational words for the grief-stricken: You brought it on yourselves for not supporting Bush's foreign policy.

This according to the New York Times account:
"Some of our European friends have been somewhat ambivalent," Mr. Cheney told a town hall meeting [...] Some foreign countries have probably been thinking that "if they kept their heads down," their citizens would not suffer terrorist attacks, the vice president said. "Well, Russia got his anyway." [...] As a result, Mr. Cheney said, "people are reassessing now" whether they should [...] openly support Mr. Bush's policies.

We suppose we can be grateful that Cheney does not blame the attacks on the increasing acceptance of feminists and gays in contemporary society, as some of his religious-right supporters suggested following the 9/11 attacks. But once again, we are back to "Bush or die." It is unfortunate that the Times reporter did not take a moment to unpack the implications of what Cheney is saying here, and help readers understand whether an embracing of Bush's foreign policies would have had any impact on this tragedy.

It is for the rest of us to let Mr. Cheney know his remarks are utterly inappropriate as a response to this devastating event, and they only make him appear to be even more of a reptile than previously thought.


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