Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Quiz: Who's Charles Palantine?

I'm surprised that the finger pointing and punditry over the Arizona shootings haven't invoked Senator Charles Palantine.

He was the fictional Senator who was stalked by Travis Bickle in Martin Scorsese's 1976 Taxi Driver.

Secret Service agents chased away the menacing Travis Bickle (Robert DeNiro). But the movie, sans ideology, reminds us that there are lurking mad people among us, and that they will from time to time erupt for reasons that make total sense to them but have nothing to do with the thoughts by which we arrange our worldviews.

Here's the iconic scene from the movie. Travis Bickle, Jared Loughner; folks like this are out there and, while we might debate the best means to help, contain or otherwise deal with them, our political thoughts do not create or animate them. (LANGUAGE CONTENT WARNING):

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