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O'Connor says religious right hate-speech could spur violence against judges, calls her critics "extreme"

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Wow. I'm glad our old-time liberal non-profits have NOT jumped on the anti-judge hate speech issue that I've been preaching about for, oh, a good month now. Obviously I was wrong and the story has no legs whatsoever.

From this week's Newsweek:

In a speech earlier this month at Goucher College, O'Connor herself said she was surprised at all the violent threats she received. "I don't think the harsh rhetoric helps," she told the crowd. "I think it energizes people who are a little off base to take actions that maybe they wouldn't otherwise take."
More from O'Connor's speech criticizing the conservative Christians, who she apparently thinks are not "thoughtful citizens" - but rather part of the "extreme" in America:
Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor said harsh political rhetoric could spur violence against the nation's judges, offering a veiled response last night to some national figures who in the past week have blasted the courts for failing to intervene in the case of a severely brain-damaged Florida woman.

Speaking before a crowded auditorium at Goucher College in Towson, O'Connor said she never anticipated her work as a judge would be accompanied by violent threats and said "thoughtful citizens" should demand an end to fiery extremism on either end of the political spectrum....

Political leaders, most prominently House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, said the nation's courts would have to answer for Schiavo's death.

O'Connor said tensions have historically existed between Congress and the courts, but she added: "It isn't any more pleasant today. ... And I hope that we will see an end to this, but it won't happen right away, and it will take the work of thoughtful citizens who say, 'We don't want to have this from either extreme, so let's move on.'"

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