Ted Nugent fears death by 'lunatic fringe' liberal blogger
Alan Colmes began a segment on Fox's Hannity & Colmes Thursday by saying, "Conservatives are outraged tonight, outraged I tell you, by the writing of one liberal blogger who appears to be -- or they claim is -- endorsing the assassination of both Rush Limbaugh and conservative rocker Ted Nugent."
On July 4, Hart Williams, a former writer for Larry Flynt's Hustler magazine, had blogged about an op-ed by Nugent in that day's Wall Street Journal, in which he wrote, "Forty years ago hordes of stoned, dirty, stinky hippies converged on San Francisco to 'turn on, tune in, and drop out,' which was the calling card of LSD proponent Timothy Leary. Turned off by the work ethic and productive American Dream values of their parents, hippies instead opted for a cowardly, irresponsible lifestyle of random sex, life-destroying drugs and mostly soulless rock music that flourished in San Francisco"
"Yes, he hates his generation," wrote Williams. "Substitute 'Jews' or 'Blacks' for 'hippies,' and youíve pretty much got the depth of Nugentís bigotry and the depths of his hatred for his own generation ó who never particularly embraced him."
In a follow-up post the next day, Williams wrote:
Don't you get it? These people wouldn't mind if we all showed up dead tomorrow (as long, in most cases, as THEY didn't have to do the dirty work). They have expressed their contempt in terms as clear as John Hancock's signature.
I will only reiterate what I've said before: WHEN they manage to inevitably push their litany of hatespeak into actual bloodletting, and full-blown civil war (for there is no other place that this hatred of American against American can go), well ...
I've got dibs on Rush, as soon as it's legal and lawful to shoot him.
Whoever wants Ted Nugent is welcome to him, but I would prefer that you would call it now, so as to conserve on ammunition. We will need to manage it prudently.
But when the day comes that they have finally set brother against brother, and sister against sister in the name of their pocketbooks, I won't approach exterminating them with anything approaching remorse. They've already told me what they think of me, of my friends and of my peers.
The post raised a firestorm of outrage among right-wing blogs, which took it not as a somewhat ill-tempered daydream of Iraq-like violence in the United States but rather as an explicit threat to shoot the two conservatives.
"Are you really offended by that?" Colmes asked Nugent on Friday's show.
Nugent replied, "Since the 1960's, the animal rights and the anti-hunters have been threatening to kill my family and kill me. ... This guy is obviously a nutcase, but he's actually making a statement to assassinate fellow Americans."
"No, he's not, Ted," exclaimed Colmes. "That's not what he said."
"He used the word 'assassinate,' didn't he?" said Nugent.
"He doesn't want to assassinate you," said Colmes. "You don't really believe that? Do you?"
"Yeah. I do," Nugent said grimly. "My family takes it very seriously and they're very concerned about it."
"He didn't say the word 'assassinate,' by the way," said Colmes. "He used 'when they manage to push hate so far that there's blood-letting in this country...'"
"You can try to rationalize it all you want, Alan," Nugent concluded. "We have our guard up,"
Sean Hannity then joined in to engage Nugent in a surreal dialogue that sounded bizarrely like something lifted from a Tom Tomorrow cartoon strip.
"That's a threat against you and your family and it's a pretty sick mindset," said Hannity. "I've been through this. Every outspoken conservative I know gets the same type of hate speech on a fairly regular basis."
"These are lunatic fringers, Sean, that really are dangerous," replied Nugent solemnly.
"Why can't they just disagree with us and fight in the arena of ideas?" asked Hannity plaintively.
"The arena of ideas, I like that," said Nugent thoughtfully.
"There's a lunatic fringe on the left," Nugent continued. "I find it just reprehensible that they would recommend violence, not to mention murder and shooting people."
"Next question," offered Hannity. "Should they all be arrested?"
"I think they should," Nugent agreed.
The following video is from Fox's Hannity & Colmes, broadcast on July 12.