At a recent GOP gathering called by right-wing Congressman Bob Latta, angry and threatening words were shouted, including a suggestion about ‘a shot in the head’ of the President and other members of Congress. Mr. Latta, it was reported in the Toledo Blade, made no objection to these statements and later told reporters that he ‘hadn’t heard’ them. Nice try. Mr. Latta.
Two people attending the rally were identified as sources of the shouts, both from small rural towns in Ohio. It is to be noted that Representative Latta’s district essentially consists of farmland and small towns. It would be easy to conclude that the views of those who made the ugly remarks are probably typical of folks living in rural Ohio.
Yet, one ought not use such a broad brush. A refreshing letter to the editor of the Toledo Blade appeared today from small-town Ohio which gives one hope that not all small townsfolk hold radical right-wing political positions.
Gibsonburg Ohio is a village of about 2000 people south of Toledo at the crossroads of two state roads. As with most rural Ohio towns, Gibsonburg is 95% white and incomes in the village hover in the low $30,000’s. The black residents of the village represent but 0.32% of the population.
My only contact with a village resident had been through a comment on my post, The Dangerous Sheeple. It is heartening to realize that in Gibsonburg Ohio there lives a strong and independent woman who will not be painted with that broad, bigoted, small-town brush.
Joyce Bower of Gibsonburg wrote a dynamic letter today which exposed the truth about that meeting that Rep. Latter had called. She attended the meeting and took notes. She said, in fact, that she was the person who, as the Blade reported, brought to the attention of Mr. Latta these ugly remarks [including assassination of the President]. The remarks that Mr. Latta claimed that he did not hear.
Ms. Bower wrote:
“I wrote down the comments so that I would not forget them. I said, “We are a Christian nation and I heard a very un-Christian line tonight. I am disappointed that you did nothing. I think it is wrong not to comment about ” shot in the head…”
His response was, “I wanted more people to talk.” I said, “Again, I am very disappointed that you did not take charge and respond. He said, “Thank you for coming. Are you a resident of the county?” I responded, “Yes I am.” He said, “thank you for coming” and went on to another person.
He had the opportunity to say he did not hear, “or shot in the head” or say it was the wrong thing to say. It seems strange to me that until a day later he didn’t realize he ‘did not hear the words.'”
Thank you, Ms. Bower, for telling the truth about what really happened inside of that room. She said at the end of her letter that she has been ‘uneasy’ since attending that meeting. She wrote that she was shocked that “so much hate was expressed in a few minutes.”
Yes, hate. Hate fueled by right-wing propagandists selling their oil of virtreol to the eager, awaiting and ignorant masses 24/7.