How in the world can Obama be blamed for the tragedy in Chattanooga?


From time to time, I surf through the right-wing blogosphere just to see what’s on the minds of people of that ilk — especially the generally overwrought folks who post comments on their favorite websites.

Yesterday was the latest such occasion, and the timing could hardly have been more propitious. It was soon after the tragedy in Chattanooga, Tenn., where four U.S. Marines were shot and killed by a young man who turns out to have been a Muslim. The wingnuts were in especially high dudgeon.

I expected, of course, that lots of the comments would feature Islamaphobic sentiments, and they did. But I was surprised at the high volume of claims that President Obama somehow deserves blame for the shootings. Oh, I expected at least a little of that sort of thing — some people blame Obama for anything and everything — but I didn’t anticipate that there would be reams of it.

At places like Breitbart, the Gateway Pundit and certain other reliably rabid sites, the anti-Obama vitriol was a tidal wave. For example, baseless claims that the president is a Muslim himself were countless. Yes, you would think that widespread debunking of such nonsense a few years ago would have laid the issue to rest. But not so — at least not with these people.

There were calls for Obama’s impeachment — on what grounds, I’m not sure — and there were even hints that an armed revolution might be in order.

I would recommend that you take your own tour of this underbelly of the right-wing noise machine, especially during this immediate aftermath of the Chattanooga shootings — but not without a warning: The crap you’re likely to encounter is almost funny at first, but it becomes very depressing after a while.

On the whole, Americans are good people. But a lot of them are sick in the head.