Last week’s news propelled central Washington into the national spotlight when federal authorities charged Selah resident Charles Wilson with threatening to assault and murder Senator Patty Murray in an attempt to intimidate her in her official duties and to retaliate against her for her Health Care Reform Act vote.
From March 22 to April 4, central Washington’s Charles Wilson inundated Senator Patty Murray’s Seattle office voice mail box. During a March 22 message, Wilson intoned:
There are many people out there who want you dead. Just remember that as you are politicking for your election. It only takes one piece of lead.... Kill the f***ing senator! Kill the f***ing senator! I’ll donate the lead... Now that you have passed your health-care bill, let the violence begin. Let the violence begin.... We are not a country of cowards, as one of the high ranking people of this administration says. You’ll find out how f***ng cowardly we really are, my dear. Better get under your desk, get on your (unintelligible). [Expletives modified]
On March 23, alliterative Charles Wilson boasted God and guns as his bedrock beliefs:
With the passing of your health-care bill, it is living proof that ... This great country that believes in God and guns. Since you’ve done this, there’s going to be some bigger targets on your f***ing back.... I hope somebody kills you, and I hope somebody kills [the President]. Yes, die dead. You’re signing my death warrant, so I want to sign yours, f***ing b****.
A later message on March 23 read:
By your attempts to overtake this country with socialism, somebody’s gonna get to you one way or another and blow your f***ing brains out, and I hope it does happen. If I have the chance, I would do it.... I hope you f***ing die. I want to f***ing kill you. I hope somebody f***ing hangs you, blows your f***ing brains out. We will not be socialized, you f***ing c**t.... You are a marked person for the rest of your f***ing life, you f***ing slut.
Apparently not satisfied with his earlier barbaric broadsides, Charles Wilson, who happens himself to benefit from Social Security, Medicare, government roads, and socialized education, added a third message on March 23:
Kill the f***ing Senator! Hang f***ing Senator! I hope somebody puts a f***ng bullet between your f***ing eyes. Far left liberal socialist democratic b****. I hope someone f***ing [sic] erasers your f***ing life. Yes, I hope somebody f***ing assassinates you, you f***ing bitch.
Then during an April Fool’s Day conversation with an undercover agent, Charles Wilson boasted carrying a .38 revolver; registration records confirm that Wilson owns such a gun. Wilson told the agent he would “not blink” to use it. Even before the threats of violence, Wilson, while cowardly blocking his telephone number, devoted months to leaving off-hour vulgar voice mail messages to Senator Murray’s office.
On April 1, Tea Party emissaries assembled outside the Yakima Red Lion to protest the presence of Patty Murray. In an April 4 message to Senator Murray, Wilson confirmed his participation in the protest. My son and I were present at the protest to raise signs in favor of Murray. We were met with insults from Tea Party acolytes, including taunts about Democrats too vulgar to quote here, from a man who met the description of Charles Wilson.
Republican leaders accuse Democrats with advertising, for political gain, the reprehensible threats issued by people like Charles Wilson. Although purporting on the one hand to denounce the threats, Republican leaders add on the other hand that the American people are angry over the health care bill. For his part, our central Washington congressman hasn’t gone even that far, choosing instead simply to remain silent about the obscene and savage comments of his constituent, Charles Wilson.
Central Washington Democrats implore our Republican, Libertarian, and Independent neighbors and friends to respect our Democratic President, Senators, and other government officials. Please use the ballot box, not hate and violence, to meet your political goals. We Democrats are also Americans and have more in common with you than differences with you. Please also remember that you benefit from programs begun by Democrats, such as Social Security, Medicare, and agricultural subsidies, which were earlier denounced as socialism. Also, Democrats built irrigation systems that water our central Washington crops, dams that bring our region cheap energy, and the Hanford site that employs thousands of our neighbors.
For eight years, central Washington Democrats persisted under the rash and reckless policies of the Republican Bush administration. We endured a stolen presidential election, tax cuts benefiting the wealthy, ruinous economic policies favoring the rich, deregulation of the financial industry that brought a financial crisis, growing budget deficits, lies leading to a costly and deadly war, appointment of ideological judges, and torture in the name of Christianity. For the last sixteen years, we have also endured a robotic, ethically challenged Republican congressman, purchased by big oil and large corporations. Despite strong disagreement, we never issued threats of violence against a government official. Instead, we successfully worked to overturn wrongs through the ballot box.
George Fearing, ChairpersonFourth Congressional District Democrats