There are many unanswered questions about the tragic hanging death of Bill Sparkman, a US Census Bureau employee, in rural Kentucky. But one thing is clear. Right-Wing leaders like Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and media outlets like Fox News have whipped up hysteria and paranoia over the 2010 Census.
Mr. Sparkman’s untimely demise may or may not have been the doing of an anti-government fanatic, but it’s clear that the Right is creating an environment that is hostile to Census workers and the Constitutionally-mandated Census.
A steady stream of conspiracy talk by Beck, Bachmann, and others on Fox News has legitimized and propelled conspiracy theories among many everyday Americans who are now terrified of their own government. Talk of rounding up dissidents into concentration camps and nefarious plots by ACORN to steal Congress has fed anti-government sentiment, which could boil over at any moment.
This should be an important wake-up call to those national outlets that have employed fear in pursuit of ratings.
Here is a video compilation of recent Fox News coverage of the 2010 Census — featuring Beck and Bachmann among others — along with three amateur YouTube videos created by Americans who fear the Census: