Los Angeles Times
Letters to the Editor: The Brownshirts are back, and they include Paul Gosar and the extremist GOP
November 18, 2021
To the editor: House Republicans’ overwhelming refusal to censure Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) is reprehensible. It compares with the German parliament’s behavior in the 1930s.
With Hitler in power, antisemitic statements and actions were tolerated, leading to multiple instances of violence and ultimately Kristallnacht in 1938, before World War II. German acceptance of Kristallnacht set the stage for the horrors of the Holocaust.
The Republican Party is proceeding down a dangerous path with Donald Trump as its absolute leader. All GOP political actions are designed to restore him and the party to power.
The moral judgment of our leaders combined with our Constitution’s checks and balances are the keystone of American democracy. To congressional Republicans, they are irrelevant. Now more than ever, we need an energetic press.
Sidney Weissman, Highland Park, Ill.
To the editor: Gosar needs to be investigated for fomenting violent overthrow of the government, in violation of federal law. When he distributed a video on Twitter showing him killing his Democratic colleague, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, and attacking President Biden, he was arguably encouraging the assassination of elected officials, which is prohibited by law.
Article 18, Section 2385 of the U.S. Code states, in part: “Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States … by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government … shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.”
Social media is a powerful way of disseminating ideas and coordinating action, as was evidenced prior to the Jan. 6 attack. Violent imagery against government officers must be discouraged, because some people take this stuff literally and seriously.
Sheila Alpers, Palm Springs
To the editor: The unforgettable quote by Joseph Welch in the McCarthy hearings of 1954 circles my brain: “Have you no sense of decency?”
It seems easy for these members to rage against pornography and promote book banning and the sanctity of life for the unborn, but here, right now on our doorstep, we hear not a peep from the sheep as death is promulgated for a member of Congress by one of their own.
Their silence is deafening.
Roz Levine, Los Angeles
To the editor: The Republican Party has descended into a cult beholden not to the American people or traditional conservatism, but to their leader Trump.
Last week, the Wyoming GOP voted to disavow Rep. Liz Cheney, a rock-solid Republican. Her only sin was that she voted to impeach the former president for his central role in the Jan. 6 insurrection.
More recently, only two Republicans voted to censure Gosar. If one of my grandchildren had posted a video depicting violence against one of their classmates, they would almost certainly be suspended or expelled from school, and I would be in full support of that action. Yet nearly half of the members of the House of Representatives apparently find no fault with Gosar’s despicable action.
May the Grand Old Party rest in peace. It is dead.
Gary Vogt, Menifee