The latest media furor over Ann Coulter - best-selling author of the No. 1 best-selling book "Godless: The Church of Liberalism" - centers on reports that she suggested "fragging" Rep. John Murtha. Those reports are blatantly untrue, but that hasn't stopped such Coulter critics as Editor & Publisher magazine from spreading the falsehood under the headline "Latest Ann Coulter Outrage: 'On 'Fragging' John Murtha."
In an e-mail interview by John Hawkins at the Right Wing News Web site, Coulter was asked to give her opinion of certain people, among them anti-war Congressman Murtha, D-Pa. In a style familiar to journalists who have quizzed her via e-mail, Coulter responded with her characteristic single brief line: "The reason soldiers invented 'fragging.'"
That's it. That's all she wrote.
She did not suggest that Murtha, long out of the military service, should be killed by a grenade because his men considered him deserving of death -- which is what fragging means -- she was describing him as the kind of leader soldiers have good reason to distrust.
There's more, but it's really too stupid to read. Let's parse this statement.
Murtha is "The reason soldiers invented 'fragging.'"
In other words, Murtha, as a military officer, is an example of the kind of officer for whom "fragging" became an instrument of killing said officer. I see, yes, that's much clearer.
Let's try a few variations:
Martin Luther King is the reason Southerners invented lynching.
Ronald Reagan is the reason demented former Manson cultists invented assassination attempts.
3000 New Yorkers are the reason Al Qaeda invented flying planes into buildings.
Jesus was the reason Romans invented crucifixion.
No, she didn't advocate killing Murtha. Not at all. Nor did she advocate Timothy McVeigh blowing up the NYTimes. Nope. Not poor l'il misunderestimated Ann.
I'll close with this: She's the reason the citizens of Salem invented trial by immersion and burning at the stake.