I've lived in this community for 18 years. I generally keep my opinions to myself, in part because I’m libertarian on most issues and just because there is freedom of speech doesn’t mean you have to hear my opinion on everything.
I’ve enjoyed living in this community. Unfortunately, the level of discourse here has become terrible. There doesn’t seem any tolerance for a differing opinion. If my opinion isn't the same as yours, you’d call me a racist, a Nazi, “alt-right”, etc. Anything and everything that you think is wrong or not how you want it, must be the fault of people who aren’t progressives or liberals.
When that crazy person killed those two people last month, the constant barrage by the Mercury writers and commenters and around town was “this is what Donald Trump voters do, this is what republicans do, we have to shut down their free speech, we to fight in the streets, etc.”
That person was severely mentally disturbed, but his actions were attributed to anyone who doesn’t think like you.
This week in Alexandria VA, someone who spouted the same hatred for years that I’ve heard in this community for the last six months attempt to assassinate duly elected representatives. Had he killed 15 to 20 republicans, the House would have been in chaos.
An editorial or a story here about stopping the incitement to violence on the left would've been nice; the silence from this paper is appalling. Having attributed the violence in May to the other side, saying nothing about Wednesday’s shooting is almost a tacit approval of the actions in VA.
It's time for those on the left advocate violence, cheer on antifa and want to shut down free speech should take a long hard look in the mirror.