Courts & Crime

January 9, 2011 4:11 PM

Just talk or real threat? Shooting raises questions about rhetoric

When Rep. Gabrielle Giffords found herself targeted for defeat last year with a map showing a rifle's crosshairs over her district, she worried it might incite violence. "When people do that, they've got to realize there's consequences," she said, after Sarah Palin posted the crosshairs graphic on her Facebook page. There's no evidence the ad contributed to Saturday's shooting, but the shooting has sparked sharp debate over such incendiary rhetoric.

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