Tuesday, March 23, 2021


There's been a mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, and one of the front-page stories at FoxNews.com is this:
Colorado Rep. Boebert decries 'senseless violence' in Boulder

Gun rights activist urges that 'we unify and not divide during this time'

Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., was one of several lawmakers who expressed concern following reports that police had responded to an active shooter situation at a grocery store in Boulder, Colorado on Monday....

Why does Fox consider this a front-page story? Why is it a story at all? Boebert is fairly high-profile for a first-term member of Congress, and she's a Fox favorite, but she's not a party leader (yet), and while she's from Colorado, she represents the 3rd District, which doesn't include Boulder.

And it's not as if Boebert is having second trhoughts about her gun extremism. Forbes reports:
Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-Colo.) campaign sent out a fundraising email to her supporters encouraging them to say “Hell No” to any gun control measures in Washington on Monday night just hours after a mass shooting in her state left ten people including a police officer dead.

The email, with a subject line: “I told Beto 'HELL NO' to taking our guns. Now we need to tell Joe Biden,” was sent out by Boebert’s campaign just two hours after the shooting journalist David Gura first reported on Twitter....

I assume Fox is promoting Boebert as a reasonable person at this moment for the same reason Boebert went temporarily silent on Twitter after that "may we unify" tweet (she ordinarily posts a lot, nearly always in a combative mood): Because it's believed that the general public pays attention to the most extreme of the extremists at moments like this, and it's important for them to don fig leaves of reasonableness momentarily. When the media conversation changes, they'll go right back to being partisan extremists, of course.

As I've been writing this, she just posted a tribute to the murdered police officer:

But no defiant calls to preserve the gun status quo on her feed.

The fundraising message reported by Forbes was just for superfans -- we weren't supposed to notice it. Now we're paying attention, so she's behaving well.

This is how they do it. They talk like extremists when they think only their fans are listening, then they're on their best behavior, temporarily, at moments like this. And so our politcal culture clings to the enduring myth that the GOP is a reasonable political party made up of responsible citizens. Don't fall for it.

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