I like to think of myself as a pretty mainstream conservative. Other than, perhaps, my choice of a presidential candidate for 2016, I am used to my views being at least tangentially close to that of my fellow conservatives. That's why it's just a bit unsettling to be out here by my lonesome on this issue.
Consider poor Samuel L. Jackson. Okay, that was intentional. He's anything but poor. He could probably buy and sell me thirty times over, but he's catching an awful lot of flak for a comment he made that just doesn't seem all that terrible to me.
“When that thing happened in France, we were sitting there going, 'Oh, my God, these terrorists!' And I can't even tell you how much that day the thing that happened in San Bernardino — I was in Hawaii — how much I really wanted that to just be another, you know, crazy white dude, and not really some Muslims, because it's like: 'Oh, s**t. It's here. And it's here in another kind of way,'”
First of all, he was honest. A failing I suffer myself most of the time. And I can identify exactly with what he said. Before you assign a motive based on racial prejudice, think back to the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. A black youth was shot in the street, apparently resisting arrest, but the identity (and race) of the police officer was not immediately revealed. I can very specifically remember thinking, "Man, I hope it was a black cop". Not because I wished any of the emotional trauma that so often accompanies even justified shootings, to be visited upon him, but because I did not want the race baiters and poverty pimps to turn what may have been (and was proven to be) a justifiable shooting into some occasion to stir up racial unrest.
I hoped it wasn't a white guy, because of the implications that would cause, not only in Ferguson, but nationwide. It was not racism on my part, but hoping there would be no cause for rioting.
If you are a pro-life conservative, you should be able to relate to this as well. Just recently there was a shooting incident in Colorado in and around a Planned Parenthood facility. Look me in the eye and tell me that it didn't at least go through your mind that you hoped that maybe the guy was a bank robber, chased into the PP, or "some crazy white dude" with no affiliation with any pro-life organizations whatsoever. You didn't want a righteous cause to be smeared by an unrighteous act.
It's honest. In today's culture, every shooting has been politicized to the extent that, before the bodies are cold, before any investigation has begun, some group is trying to cram this into their political agenda. If the San Bernadino shooters were some random "crazy white dudes", or even a gang shooting, then, terrorism has not come to the heartland. 'Oh, s**t. It's here.'
Has Samuel L. Jackson ever said anything else that colors your opinion of him? (Pun intended). I don't know. I'm saying that we can give the man the benefit of the doubt on this one. His was the honest expression of a regret that terrorism had come to the heartland, much like my desire was not to see racial strife in Ferguson, or yours was not to see pro-lifers smeared by one unstable individual.
From the stand point of those who did not want to see terrorists active in the homeland, can't you see that point of view? On the morning of 9/11/2001, as I was sitting at my desk, I heard that "a plane had hit the WTC". My first thought was that maybe some elderly pilot in a Cessna had had a heart attack and crashed into a building. I can assure you that, although I do not wish any harm to elderly pilots, of any race, I really wanted that plane crash to be some "old white dude", rather than a terrorist attack.
It wasn't that long ago, that some of you were quoting Mr. Jackson for his reasonable tone on gun control.
"I don't think it's about more gun control. I grew up in the South with guns everywhere and we never shot anyone. This [shooting] is about people who aren't taught the value of life."
I think we should cut Mr. Jackson some slack on this one. Just sayin'.