Calling for the execution of political opponents should never be condoned
Less than six months ago I lambasted the bloodlust rhetoric of U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert. I worried that leaders like the congresswoman could be engaged in a competitive spiral to prime their base.
At the time, I wrote that those leaders were “cultivating resentment, anger and hate.” I forgot to include violence. But that is where we find ourselves less than a half year later.
The rhetoric has not gotten better, but rather descended into casual references to treason and execution.
First, Pearson Sharp, a reporter from the farther-right-than-Fox One America News Network (OAN), went on a riff against anyone who contradicts the assertion that the 2020 presidential election was rigged. Specifically, he speculated that hundreds or thousands of people were engaged in a “coup against the presidency,” labeled each a “traitor,” and noted that “a good solution for dealing with such traitors: Execution.”
Only a few days later, Garrett Flicker, the current Denver Republican Party chairman, made a Facebook post asking whether teachers should “be charged with treason?”