When Jake Burris, the campaign manager for Democrat Ken Aden, arrived at his home in Arkansas he found the family cat dead on his front porch. The cat’s skull had been bashed in. It’s eyeball was hanging out of its socket. And the word “liberal” was written on its fur.
(Picture below: Graphic. Stop reading now if you don’t want to see it.)
“To kill a child’s pet is just unconscionable… I’ve seen the best of humanity and the worst of humanity. Whoever did this is definitely part of the worst of humanity. It is one thing to engage in civil political discourse, and for Republicans and Democrats to disagree with each other, which is an expected part of the political process. Taking it to this level is beyond unacceptable.”
Burris said that he takes the threat seriously but he won’t be ending his campaign. Burris, who has filed a police report, said:
“I’ve got a gun and I know how to use it. If I have to protect my kids I’ll do it without hesitation.”
Blue Arkansas reports that Aden is currently running for running for Arkansas’ 3rd Congressional District in a heated campaign against congressman Steve Womack. It’s hard to deny that this heinous act wasn’t politically driven, but both Aden and Burris agree that congress Steve Womack had nothing to do with it.
“Although we have certainly disagreed and engaged in a great deal of civil discourse, I do not believe in any way that Congressman Womack or his campaign had anything to do with this incident… We suspect this is the action of a rogue individual or group of individuals who are the type of folks that stoop to the lowest common denominator instead of engaging in civil political discourse.”
Womack released a statement following the incident, saying:
“The thought of brutalizing any animal to make a political statement, no matter what that statement is, is beyond any standard of decency. The person or people, if there was more than one, who are responsible — they definitely need to be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law. There should be no tolerance in our political discussion here in this nation for this kind of behavior.”
Blue Arkansas notes that the cat murder was committed on the same day that Gabrielle Giffords resigned from congress. Giffords was the victim of an assassination attempt that sparked a debate about violent rhetoric in political discourse.