I just faxed the following letter to John McCain’s Washington office:
October 10, 2008
Senator John McCain
United States Senate
241 Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
VIA FAX (202) 228-2862
Dear Senator McCain,
I am distressed at the tone you and Governor Palin have taken in campaign appearances over the last few days. Increasingly, your campaign rallies have turned into call and response sessions in which you and the Governor pose questions to the crowds and stand idly by as the responses you receive have grown ever more violent. Calls of “terrorist”, “traitor”, “Muslim” and, especially, “Kill him” have no place in American politics, yet you and the Governor have taken no steps to discourage this behavior.
I would remind you of Section 245 of Title 18 of the United States Code. Both voting and campaigning for office are Federally protected activities. To wit:
(b)Whoever, whether or not acting under color of law, by force or threat of force willfully injures, intimidates or interferes with, or attempts to injure, intimidate or interfere with–
(1)any person because he is or has been, or in order to intimidate such person or any other person or any class of persons from–
(A) voting or qualifying to vote, qualifying or campaigning as a candidate for elective office, or qualifying or acting as a poll watcher, or any legally authorized election official, in any primary, special, or general election; …..
shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned…
The crowds at your rallies appear to be headed toward the crimes described above, with you and the Governor inciting them to such actions.
You have been campaigning under the slogan of “Country First”. I hardly see how inciting violence can be an aspect of putting country first. Please consider this issue very carefully. I urge you to change the way your rallies are run to discourage such “participation” by the crowds. Further, I strongly urge you to clarify to your supporters that you could never condone violence or the level of rage that we have seen lately at your rallies.
Because of multiple economic and other social stresses, our nation teeters at the edge of a potential breakdown of social order. Rapid and responsible action on your part can possibly prevent an outbreak of violence that could spread rapidly and widely. On the other hand, continued fanning of intolerance only will hasten any breakdown. I urge you to truly put our country first by bringing these practices to an end.