"Vote [For Kerry] or Die! [literally]"

    Are you ready for a cheery campfire story?  A couple weeks ago, the Friday before the election, a guy and his girlfriend were working late in a downtown Minneapolis office.  They heard a commotion and our man looked out the window to see a person doing something to our man's car.  Our guy ran downstairs and noticed that his Bush/Cheney '04 sticker had been removed.  He asked the girl who had removed it what she thought she was doing, as she was joining a larger group.  Words were exchanged and suddenly, it got ugly.  Our man was jumped by about 4 guys and 2 girls.  He got in a few good shots, but was simply outnumbered.  His girlfriend screamed at them to stop and said she’s calling the police.  The group ran toward her, threatening to beat her up as well.  The girl narrowly escaped by ducking back into the building and pulling the door shut.  As she did, she witnessed a guy looking back at her just before he kicked our man in the head, as if kicking off for a football game. Our man was beaten unconscious (raising the assault to a felony charge) and dragged for TWO blocks.

    This happened right here in the good ol' liberal land of Minnesota.  Thank God we are such a peaceful lot, striving to bring an end to violence at home and abroad, longing for the end of Hatred as a Family Value, when all walks of life can walk peacefully down safe, city streets.  Thank God for the liberals of our fair city, standing on street corners with Kerry/Edwards signs, hanging banners off bridges over I-94, writing letters to the editor urging "Defeat Bush Again." 

    It'd be nice to think this violent story was an isolated incident in our town.  Too bad it's not.  See HERE for another brief, local example.  In addition to these two incidents, my friend, who suffered some bumps and bruises but ultimately came through ok, told me some inside information he received from the Minneapolis police.  There have been a number of conflicts between Bush and Kerry supporters, but the instigators of violence in such conflicts were by far and away Kerry supporters.  This is not factually supported by some independent study, but it came from the police.  Maybe Bush supporters are just anemic weaklings, but they were the ones getting sent to the hospital. 

    What do we make of this?  Of course, I know, generalizations are rarely helpful.  Stereotypes do little good.  There are most likely an equal number of examples that could be provided to show the opposite to be just as true (I'm sure the South would be a wealth of examples).  Yeah I can dig all that.  But let's face the facts.  This town is liberal and will usually vote Democratic.  The fact that Bush even had a chance this year is an anomaly.  In a town such as this, Bush supporters are the minority.  I thought Democrats were the party of minorities.  I thought they stood up for the little guys of the world.  Hmm.  Also, what about tolerance?  What about doing away with Hatred as a Family Value, and letting people be who they are?  Again, out the window. 

    Am I suggesting that violent action against Republicans is advocated from the Democratic platform?  Absolutely not.  I'm sure it would be condemned, as it should.  But in my 15 years or so of paying attention to this stuff, it seems that intolerance comes much more often from the people who preach tolerance.  You are encouraged to register to vote... as long as you vote for the right guy.  Heck, if you are disenfranchised enough, whatever that means, we'll even drive you to the polls.  If you need help marking the little bullet with a black dot, you could probably get help doing that too. 

    We thank God you're all right Nate.  I hope you learned your lesson. 

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