Is there a floor?

“I guess this is our last goodbye
And you don’t care, so I won’t cry.” — Gordon Sumner

There are famous lows in our nation’s history. I suppose one would see the signs beforehand, but everything is a lot clearer in the rearview mirror. We could see the signs of Civil War when we look backwards. I wonder what they saw when Charles Sumner was beaten to an inch of his life on the Senate floor in 1856.

Will we look back on this latest flap over Rep. Paul Gosar as a blip on the radar or a precursor of things to come? For those that don’t want to go down the rabbit hole, essentially Gosar released a video on Twitter and Instagram of him killing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes and also stabbing President Biden. As always, it is the aftermath of this situation that is so disjarring.

Democratic leadership is at a loss of what to do. On a number of levels I get it. A lot of this has to do with the momentum thing I discussed earlier this week. How much political capital do you want to expend to get rid of a guy that probably has zero political power? It was a lot like dealing with Marjorie Taylor Greene. If you do too much you end up martyring a nobody and giving them more oxygen. If you don’t do enough you encourage the behavior.

Kevin McCarthy apparently has been neutered for his own protection. He is not willing to stand up to anybody or anything. He’s the kid on the playground that all the bullies hit up for his lunch money. The only question is which bully will get to him first.

AOC is one of the more polarizing members of Congress. She might be the most polarizing member of Congress. Even for Democrats, you feel like you alternately love her and then want to shake some sense into her. That’s what happens when you speak your mind and never self-censor yourself. On some level, it is enviable that someone can go through life like that. On another it is frightening to see someone get that much vitriol for just speaking their mind.

In one of the oddities of this case, Gosar’s sister is one of his most vocal critics. That must be an interesting family come Thanksgiving. I think everyone should keep their head on a swivel lest the gravy bowl wind up on top of their head. However, no one can disagree with a word she says.

Everyone remembers the story of Kathy Griffin and the flap over 45’s severed head. The comedian had a somewhat promising career that went up in smoke. People don’t think that even subtle threats are funny and it doesn’t particularly matter who the subject is. Republicans and Democrats should be able to agree on this much.

That was a B-list comedian doing that. Now it is an actual member of Congress. I suppose there can be no greater illustration of where we are as a country. On one side, fringe entertainers are going a bridge too far or sound crazy. On the other side, actual representatives are going a bridge too far and sound crazy. Unfortunately, some people still don’t see the difference.

Author: sbarzilla

I have written three books about baseball including The Hall of Fame Index. I also write for You can follow me on twitter @sbarzilla.

One thought on “Is there a floor?”

  1. St. Louis, where I grew up, had a Sumner High School (Sumner Bulldogs, woof, woof). I had no idea about the Charles Sumner it was named for until today. Thanks for the background


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