Initial Report:

A security guard has been shot at the Holocaust Museum by a gunman. Information is still coming in that at least 2 people have been shot, one is law enforcement.

That area of DC has been sealed off. Rumors are circulating that the gunman is in custody.

Is there any end to hate crimes? A doctor, a soldier, who else will be mowed down because some people feel they have the right to take matters into their own hands.

More information as the story unfolds…

Update:  According to DC police, 2 people have been transported to Georgetown Hospital in serious condition.

Update 2: The alleged shooter has been identified as James Von Brunn. He is an anti-Semite and has been convicted of crimes related to his white supremist beliefs. There some confusion about his age at this point. If he is who police believe him to be, he is a WWII veteran and is quite elderly.

The gunman is in critical condition. The security guard is in grave condition.

This act seems to be terrorism and a hate crime at this point.

141 Thoughts to “Shots Fired at DC Holocaust Museum”

  1. Emma

    why the moderation all of a sudden?

  2. Witness Too

    I actually like it when our leaders take on a crisis and call for national unity, courage, and the will to solve problems. I was proud and hopeful the day President Bush gave that speech at the National Cathedral for instance. What happened next is beside the point. We were united as a people for a short time, and a lot of great things could have come of it if that unity had not been abused.

    Emma is expressing outrage over the new spending both Bush and Obama have been forced into after 8 years of huge spending that was counterproductive (much of it going to Halliburton and other no-bid war profiteers). Remember, we had surpluses when Clinton was in office. That changed under Bush, and the emergency spending to save the global economy began when Bush was still President. Let’s not forget that, otherwise we seem out of touch or at least like an amnesiac.

    But all of this is very different from manufacturing a crisis in order to score political points. I’m speaking of Rush Limbaugh’s “They’re gonna take our guns” which leads to Mr. Von Braumm’s: “If you want my guns, this is how you’ll get them” and Richard Poplawski going out and shooting police officers.

    I’m speaking of the cable news rants that caused another man to murder Dr. Tiller, and whatever it was that caused a man to kill African Americans randomly because President Obama had just been sworn in.

    I’m speaking of the ways in which these “lone wolf” domestic terrorists are being spurred on by political rhetoric from TV and radio personalities who talk as if fear, hate, and paranoia are the only valid rallying cries in right wing political discourse.

    I would submit that new emotions should be chosen for these radio and TV programs, even if there is an initial drop in viewers/listeners, out of duty to the nation.

    I do also blame the politicians for this (Palin letting her rallies get out of hand and often saying things that cause hatred and paranoia), but I think the O’Reilly/Hannity/Limbaugh/Glenn Beck types are more to blame. These are the men who make politicians think this is the best way to get votes, when really it should come from sound ideas and plans for America’s future.

  3. Witness Too

    I can understand “fear of change,” M-H. Truly I can. But after what happened under Republican rule for 8 years, can we really be surprised when in a democracy we decide to change directions? It’s undemocratic to sit there and say the change we voted for is cause for hatred, alarm, violence, etc. We voted for change, overwhelmingly. The election wasn’t stolen. There were no hanging chads. We live in a Democracy. Get over it.

  4. Emma

    Speaking of Palin, how about a liberal “comedian” making a sexual joke about her 14-year-old daughter? There’s some serious sickness there. Would there have been any outrage if Letterman had joked about a 3-way with Sasha and Malia? He would have had to hit the redemption circuit with Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson et al after something like that.

  5. Emma

    Sounds like Letterman might be egging on pedophiles.

  6. Emma

    We live in a Democracy. Get over it.

    What does that really mean? I see that theme repeatedly in other forums, like the WashPost comment boards. In other words, we won, you lost, shut up about it. Did the First Amendment get repealed when I wasn’t looking?

    By its very definition, democracy is plural, with many opposing views. So Witness, you will have to put up with all kinds of dissent. We live in a Democracy. Get over it.

  7. Moon-howler

    Emma, I honestly wondered if you were talking about President Bush or President Obama. “There are weapons of mass destruction and if we don’t go to war……” ” If we don’t set up a tarp program for our banks we will be in a great depression…”

    As for Letterman, why can’t you resist using liberal or conservative? Probably most people would have agreed with you until you started branding letterman a liberal. When Rush Limbaugh made his famous dog remark about Chelsea Clinton, did you call him a liberal also?

    Can’t people just be jerks or inappropriate without being a liberal jerk or an inappropriate liberal?

  8. Emma

    MH, the comment I made after that is still in moderation for some reason. In both posts I was just responding to Witness Too’s continual assertions that people like Brunn are being egged on by conservative media and leaders. Shouldn’t you be asking him/her the same question?

    My point is that the liberals do the exact same thing, spread anxiety and fear in exactly the same way to achieve their means. What on earth was Joe “Rain Man” Biden thinking when he warned of a “crisis” within the first six months that would test Obama’s presidency? What kind of moron (hint: Biden) warns about the dangers of classrooms, airplanes and subways because of the swine flu “crisis”? And how cynical do you have to be to assert that one should never let a good crisis go to waste, as Rahm Emanuel did?

    It’s been one “crisis” after another this year, and the word is so overused that I laugh when I hear the president use it anymore.

    And Letterman is a liberal. He’s gleefully joining in the Palin-smearing chorus, but with a stunning lack of good judgment and taste. And believe me, I am no fan of Palin, but that was an incredibly nasty, cheap shot, and far from funny.

  9. ShellyB

    Emma, you always amuse us with the things you are willing to put an either side of an equal sign. If anything you are simply making a case that Biden is capable of gaffes (knew that). What Limbaugh and his kind are doing is political. They are trying to sweep up voters and grow the Republican party with lies, hate, and hysteria. Those two things are not equal. No one is dead because Biden made a gaffe.

    For the most part liberals coped with the Bush disaster by laughing and having a sense of humor. What else can you do? Laughing does not lead to violence though. Right wingers are coping with being out of power by fomenting rage and hysteria. Rage and hysteria CAN lead to violence. If you don’t believe that, then you should read a newspaper or something. These are dangerous times.

  10. Moon-howler

    Emma, I saw some question about moderation. Using links hangs messages up in moderation sometime. I turned it lose. It also can throw it into spam. I have no idea why. I used to be able to retrieve the messages from spam. I no longer can. I hope this answers your questions. It is all about the links.

  11. Moon-howler

    Now…on to content…had you pointed out what an ass Letterman was I think most people of good conscience would have agreed. The minute you label him a liberal it becomes something else. It becomes a ‘them’ against ‘us’ situation.

    I don’t think these comedians and commentators should be bringing people’s kids into politics at all. Saturday Night Live took a shot at Chelsea if anyone remembers. Bill or Hillary fine. Chelsea no. Same with Palin, Obama, but no kids. I am not even sure I think non-political spouses should be the butt of jokes.

    I am not sure how this thread turned into commentary on Obama. You know, I was never a big fan of Pres. Bush. But I found I only made myself miserable listening to all the crap slapped around about him. It just got tiresome. The man wasn’t all bad.

  12. Moon-howler

    Rahn Emmanual made sense. He explained what he meant. I see no faulty logic here. If a crisis looms big enough, then both sides will work to solve it in a bi partisan way. What’s wrong with that?

    Joe Biden? I love Joe but he has a tendency to eat a lot of foot. I think he might be one of those really smart people who thinks everyone knows what he is talking about…lots of ‘step words.’

  13. kelly3406

    Elena :

    Do you recall “wag the dog”, where the Republicans accused the President of bombing the factories to get the attention of his sex scandal?

    Actually the Republicans were fairly quiet during operations in Bosnia, Yugoslavia, etc. So you cannot extrapolate that they were simply out to get Clinton. The timing of the operation was extremely suspect and lobbing Tomahawks at a factory in Sudan was unlikely to produce more than a temporary success.

    It probably is true that Gringrich plotted against Clinton, but that is certainly no different than Schumer, Levin, and Reid plotting to reduce Bush’s popularity after 9/11. The only real difference is that the Democrats were much more successful in accomplishing their objectives than were the Republicans. Recall that Democrates voted the overwhelmingly in favor of invading Iraq and then switched to opposition when the war proved to be more difficult than anticipated.

  14. An Ordinary Joe

    Just happened to the site. Saw the words conservative and liberal bandied about especially regarding assumptions about the madmen that have been shooting people. Labeling anyone using one word is often inprecise as we may be predominantly liberal with some conservative positions or vice versa. I would suggest that people read these two entries from the “expert” site Wikipedia–

    I don’t think all fundementalist churchgoers are conservative.
    I don’t think people who are liberal in many areas have to agree with a woman’s right to choose.
    You don’t have to be liberal or conservative to oppose or agree with a war.

    So read the articles and maybe you will see that people can’t be put into a single word (liberal or conservative) box but it would take a number of words to describe it. Maybe it would just be wise to say that one has voiced a conservative or liberal thought.

  15. Gainesville Resident

    Joe Biden should be called foot in the mouth Biden. Every time he opens his mouth up he says something stupid. I really liked his comment about swine flu and public transportation! That sure set off the entire railroad, bus, and plane industry against him. That’s just the most recent of many stupid idiotic things he has said. Obama needs to just tell that man to stop going off script in public.

  16. Gainesville Resident

    Letterman’s joke was really in poor taste, even if it was about an 18 year old woman which Letterman insists it was – but the facts don’t really bear that out. Either way, how that joke got through and approved for on the air is a real mystery. You would think someone with some common sense and an ounce of morality would have put their foot down to that. I used to like Letterman, but I think that joke was really stooping low, and I don’t even buy his explanation for it, having seen Palin say she went to the ballgame with her 14 year old daughter, NOT her 18 year old daughter. Either way, if Letterman thought it was her 18 year old daughter, the joke is still really bad and in extremely poor taste. He should have known better. I thought Letterman had better judgement, but he just proved to me he doesn’t. I would be just as outraged if he had done that to a child of a Democratic candidate, by the way.

  17. Rick Bentley

    Letterman’s joke was a low blow, whether he referred to an 18-year old or a 14-year old. He owes a real apology.

    His only defense is that none of his jokes are ever funny anyway, and he’s consistently mean-spirited rather than humorous.

    The Palin family has shown some class is the way they handle the pregnancy, and Letterman shows no class.

  18. Witness Too

    Emma inexplicably said, on a thread about DOMESTIC TERRORISM:

    So Witness, you will have to put up with all kinds of dissent.

    Emma, did you ever stop spinning long enough to comprehend what terrorism really is? Terrorism is the opposite of democracy. Terrorism is what people resort to when they find that their ideas are too radical to be embraced by the mainstream. Shooting police officers, doctors, and security guards is not “dissent.” It is terrorism.

    It would be nice if you were to accept the outcome of the election in 2008, but you are not really the problem. You are just a consumer. The producers of hate rhetoric are the ones who should consider whether they have a duty as Americans to ease back on their rhetoric, or maybe even denounce right wing terrorism as a tactic to enforce unpopular political views through intimidation.

    If you want to argue for your right to be angry, do so on a thread that is NOT about domestic terrorism. Just a suggestion.

  19. Gainesville Resident

    Rick summarized the whole Letterman thing much better than I did. I agree completely with what he said – although in the past I found some of his stuff funny – but I don’t think I will watch him anymore. I heard his half hearted apology and don’t really buy it. Anyone with an ounce of sense would have realized that joke to be completely inappropriate no matter what age person he was talking about – it should never have made it on the air. Shows an astoundlingly bad lack of judgement.

  20. Moon-howler

    How many people stopped watching SNL after the Chelsea Clinton comments? How about stopped listening to Rush Limbaugh after he showed the picture of Chelsea when discussing the White House dog (there was no White House dog) He didn’t even man up, as I recall. He said it was an accident. Chelsea was 13 or 14 at the time. What an ass!

    I don’t approve of what any of them did. People’s kids should not be the butt of jokes.

    And while we are discussing kids….Why is Bristol Palin trotting around talking about abstinence only? As far as I am concerned, she has put herself in the position of being fair game. She is now the official spokesperson for abstinence. Sorry, you just can’t have it both ways unless you want to look like the biggest hypocrite on earth. What’s wrong with Sarah advancing her own career and political ambitions and Bristol raising her child and staying off the soap box for a while? And if she goes back on it, maybe her undisclosed sex life shouldn’t be the underlying theme. And these are the people who think Bill Clinton was a hypocrite? Give me a break.

  21. Emma

    Witness Too, kindly show me excerpts where I said that the recent acts of violence were legitimate forms of dissent. No, I very clearly condemned them.

    You don’t believe it is possible to have a difference of opinion with this administration that isn’t actually just anger fueled by conservative radio. You have said that repeatedly throughout this and other threads. I get it, but I still disagree with you. Democracy is messy, isn’t it?

  22. Rick Bentley

    “….Why is Bristol Palin trotting around talking about abstinence only? As far as I am concerned, she has put herself in the position of being fair game.”

    Seems obvious to me she is trying to do something positive. Having been thrown, fairly or unfairly, into the circus of modern mdia.

  23. Emma

    Bristol is young, she made a mistake, and she is doing what she believes is right to help others from making the same mistake. Why is that deserving of ridicule? All the snarky comments about her just feed the impression that many liberals are even more intolerant of diverse thought than they accuse conservatives of being. I suppose she woudld have been hailed as some kind of heroine if she had simply aborted her baby, preferably around 7-8 months gestation? But, wait, her mother is a Republican, so I suppose the accusations of hypocrisy would have been flung around instead. So basically the kid can’t win, can she?

  24. Rick Bentley

    I can understand why some reflexively want to see her as “fair game”. Her mother is a prominant social conservative, a hero to a group of people who sometimes seem to act as if they know all the answers and pretend that the preaching of abstinence is a substitute for birth control. (IMO abstinence and sex education are not incompatible and should both be taught).

    However, I don’t think it’s fair and I think it’s terribly nasty. Girls get pregnant, in all walks of life and situations. Without getting terribly personal, I’ll just say that I’ve seen this happen in cases where the mother of the girl was neither naive nor detached. And I’ve seen the long walk that a family goes through in the case of a teenaged unwed single mother.

    And, when you are familiar with that, you really notice how inhumane and detached it is to try to bash Sarah Palin because of her daughter making this mistake and her family rallying around each other and trying to move forward. Likewise, I see nothing good in trying to bash the young woman for trying to communicate her perspective on abstinence. There’s no illusion that her testimony is going to change every heart and mind out there, but it might affect a few teenagers positively. It beats talking about Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, et al endlessly.

  25. Rick Bentley

    We are in a society where we allow our teenagers to be positively addled with sexual images, while they are home alone at unprecedented rates because most women do work and have to work. And meanwhile we’ve collectively made a joke out of the idea of marriage (huge divorce rate). We ought to be eager to preach abstinance AND birth control at every opportunity. Frankly neither of those 2 options is a guarantee in and of itself (because teens don’t always stick to abstinence, purity rings and pledges aside).

  26. Emma

    Abstinence plus birth control is a winning combination. Why is it so wrong to tell teenagers not to have sex?

    I guess you could say that liberals have been instructed by Saturday Night Live the Washington Post and MSNBC to jeer at all things conservative, even at the expense of children. You can’t really blame them, they are just victims of a media-fueled cynicism that renders them intolerant to divergent views.

  27. Rick Bentley

    It’s not wrong to tell them not to have sex, it’s just a bad idea to object to sex education and to access to birth control.

    I watch Saturday Night Live each week … I don’t think it’s really that reflexively liberal. Though I guess Meyers (not funny) doing the news and before him Tina Fey (very funny) in that particular segment are reflexively liberal and mocking of conservatives.

    Kids aren’t influenced so much by the sources you cite as much as by MTV/VH1 (those dating shows on there are a horrendous influence), music and music videos, clothing designers, and all kinds of things well under most of our radars.

  28. Rick Bentley

    My apology, you said liberals not children. I agree with your point, people are reflexive about jeering at the other political stripe.

  29. Moon-howler

    Good fight. Everyone quoted the party line perfectly without a hitch.

    Actually, I haven’t suggested bashing Bristol Palin. What I did say is that she was putting herself in the position of being fair game. Why does she feel it is her place to go around telling other people abstinence only? She is going stumping for her mother.

    I would have a great deal more respect for her if she went home and raised her child. I know exactly what she is doing.

    Rick, this doesn’t sound much like you. Although I agree pretty much with what you said. Both abstinence and full throttle sex education need to be taught and they are not mutually exclusive. I agree also about MTV influencing kids that SNL. But I wasn’t talking about influencing kids. I was talking about kids being taken advantage of.

    I still say, when your unmarried 18 year old daughter drags her baby around on the TV circuit preaching abstinence, there is a certain about of disbelief. How many people think there just might be a better way?

  30. Moon-howler

    Emma, can you write a paragraph without pitting the L word against the C word? Why must EVERYthing be liberal or conservative?

    Do you think moderates and liberals want their kids out screwing around as teenagers? I don’t think most responsible parents want that for their kids, regardless of political ideology.

  31. Rick Bentley

    I guess there’s some level of irony. Palin opposed “explicit sex-ed” classes in a conference and her daughter got pregnant at 17. Cheney toes the GOP line on homosexual rights while his own daughter is gay. GW Bush as a young man paid for a girlfriend’s abortion and later profiteers off a pro-life (anti-choice?) stance. The Bush Administration had a gay hooker running around with press passes.

    It’s reality crashing in on the bubble that some people like to live in.

    But when it comes to something as basic as a young mother having a baby and admitting what happened, and encouraging other young women to consider the possible consequences of sexual activity, I see no celebration to be found in it. Has it or will it change Sarah Palin and her position on issues? Probably. That’s not hard to do; she had few public positions worth noting anyway. The woman is inexperienced and good at doing two things : charming people and engaging in negative attacks.

    But I’m not willing to attack her (SP) as a mother. And I don’t think it’s fair, or reasonable, or civil, to do so.

  32. Emma

    Moon-howler, I guess you didn’t catch that I was spoofing Witness Too with that comment about the liberal media cynicism. I don’t believe that any of these recent violent acts can be pigeonholed in this way any more than you do.

  33. ShellyB

    Good post on Palin, Rick. I don’t judge her for what happened with her child having a child. And I think it’s okay for someone who didn’t abstain to encourage others to abstain, although perhaps she might not be very convincing at it.

    I had no idea W. once paid for an abortion. Is that really true? It seems like it couldn’t be true with all the talking he did about being against choice. He made that choice, and even paid for it.

  34. Moon-howler

    Emma, no, I didn’t catch the spoofing. Sometimes you have to point these things out go me.

    As for Bristol, I have never criticized her for having a kid. I would never. I have said she is out stumping for her mother and that *I* thought she should go home and raise her child. Who is she to go on all the tv shows and even say the word abstinence. She is still speaking out of both sides of her mouth. She owes no one any explanation. THAT IS WHY SHE NEEDS TO STOP RUNNING HER MOUTH. Sorry, was I shouting?

  35. Emma

    MH, what you seem to be suggesting is that anyone who has made a mistake has no business trying to help others to avoid the same mistake. Is that really fair?

  36. Moon-howler

    No, I am not saying that at all. Have you actually heard her stumping? Why is it Bristol out there? In the first place, when people make mistakes and come around to tell the rest of us how to do as they say, not as they do, there is a little more time between the mistake and our correction.

    I don’t think she is the authority on this topic. Give it a little time. I don’t think a high school graduate holding a couple month old baby in her arms, grad cap and gown and all, really has the right to lecture to the rest of America. In fact, what a nerve!

    If this were a Democrat family, every family values person in the world would be crawling all over her and screeking about how the the liberals are destroying the world with their promiscuous behavior.

    I just wish Bristol would drop the politics, go home and either be a teenager or a mother or both and leave the politics to the grown ups.

  37. Moon-howler

    I left out how glad I am she is without Levi Johnson who has to be one of the dumbest bastards in the world. She will do a fine job without him.

    I also left out how much I truly hate the terms ‘unwed mother’ and ‘out of wedlock.’ Both are old fashioned and extremely pejorative.

  38. Emma

    I’ll give you that the timing is a little soon. I hadn’t thought about it that way. I remember being taught about natural family planning in a premarriage class we took at a church in DC years ago. The couple who was trying to convnince us of the efficacy of this method had been married for 18 months, and had their nine-month-old baby girl crawling around at their feet. Needless to say, their message didn’t play well among us recent college grads.

  39. Moon-howler

    Emma, I think we would definitely be on the same sheet of music on that one. It reminds me of the old joke: What do you call people who practice the rhythm method? Answer: parents.

    Thanks for giving me a laugh with your natural family planning story. It ended the day on a higher note.

  40. Rick Bentley

    “I had no idea W. once paid for an abortion. Is that really true? ”

    It is rather obviously true, though she ain’t talking so it will remain unproven and unproveable. Her name was Robin Lowman and she was 15 years old. I’ll leave the googling to you.

  41. Moon-howler

    I feel very strongly that if someone named Robin Lowman had an abortion, that is her business. She does have a right to privacy.

    If George Bush did it, well, I still don’t think Robin Lowman’s privacy should be violated.

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