Monday Mourning ReadsPosted: August 5, 2019
It’s a sad morning and an ongoing reminder of what kind of deviant is occupying the White House. His diminished capacity was on full display as he dryly read a script completely defying everything he’s ever said and done in his life. He could’t even get the location of the last mass shooting straight as he read as if he could care less. He said Toledo. Yeah, right up there with the Bowling Green Massacre you know that we all will remember…
But, we know…
We know that the El Paso shooter’s manifesto echos the speech of Trump
At campaign rallies before last year’s midterm elections, President Trump repeatedly warned that America was under attack by immigrants heading for the border. “You look at what is marching up, that is an invasion!” he declared at one rally. “That is an invasion!”
Nine months later, a 21-year-old white man is accused of opening fire in a Walmart in El Paso, killing 20 people and injuring dozens more after writing a manifesto railing against immigration and announcing that “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”
The suspect wrote that his views “predate Trump,” as if anticipating the political debate that would follow the blood bath. But if Mr. Trump did not originally inspire the gunman, he has brought into the mainstream polarizing ideas and people once consigned to the fringes of American society.
We’ve all seen clips of the MAGA Rallies which are resoundingly White Nationalist in nature.
There’s just only so much I can write about today and share with you so this is likely going to be short.
Including this headline from the Washington Examiner: “Confusion: Biden offers sympathy for the ‘tragic events in Houston today and also in Michigan’”. Are these two sad, old men plus Bernie Sanders the best leadership we can offer for our ongoing moments of crises? Old guys that can’t even remember where the slaughters happened? And demented old Bernie who has his own history with the NRA and suggested Trump doesn’t want his words to kill people?
I don’t think so. This all does not have to be baked into our cake.
In August 2017, three men from rural Illinois—members of one of our country’s numerous heavily armed and rather poorly regulated “militias”—drove to Bloomington, Minnesota, just south of Minneapolis, to plant an IED in the Dar al-Farooq Islamic Center. Following their arrest, two of the men admitted their guilt. They had set out from Illinois, they said, determined to scare Muslims into leaving the United States.
The story barely made a ripple in the political press, focused, as it was, on the already routine chaos of Donald Trump’s Washington—the president was engaged in a complicated beef with Senator Richard Blumenthal; Mike Pence was supposedly setting up a “shadow campaign” for 2020; North Korea was maybe going to nuke us. All this squalid executive-branch rancor left the right free to spin the incident before the facts were known. (Shortly after the bombing, Sebastian Gorka, the Breitbart editor turned White House foreign policy adviser, suggested on MSNBC that the attack had been a false flag “propagated by the left.”) The “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville would happen a week later, forcing still another news cycle devoted to the president’s response, or nonresponse, to right-wing political violence.
This summer, Trump took aim, on Twitter, at Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, who, he said, “originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all).”
“Why,” he asked, “don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came?”
And then the ” Go Back” chants started. And while some one erased Trump’s tweets calling immigrants an infestation we all know that he can’t disappear them. He can’t disappear all those speeches and pressers where he says “infestations” over and over and over and called caravans “invasions” over and over and over.
Is this how our nightmare will end? From Politico: “Nadler: Judiciary panel could recommend articles of impeachment by late fall.” Well, no, but it’s a beginning. We still have the #MoscowMitch problem.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler said Monday that his panel could recommend articles of impeachment by late fall, sketching a rough timeline for potential efforts to remove President Donald Trump just days after a majority of House Democrats signaled their willingness to support an impeachment inquiry.
“If we decide to report articles of impeachment, we could get to that late in the fall, in the latter part of the year,” Nadler said on MSNBC.
Nadler is petitioning a federal judge to get lawmakers access to grand jury evidence collected by former special counsel Robert Mueller, and his committee is preparing to sue former White House counsel Don McGahn to compel his testimony in the committee’s ongoing investigation into potential abuses of power by Trump.
“I think that we will probably get court decisions by the end of October, maybe shortly thereafter. We’ll have hearings in September and October with people we don’t — witnesses who are not dependent on the court proceedings,” Nadler said.
I’m going to end this post with something from Slate and the keyboard and mind of Tom Scocca: “Where Taking the Concerns of Racists Seriously Has Gotten Us”.
Within last week’s story of how Ronald Reagan made a racist phone call to Richard Nixon, there was a second story—a parable, effectively: a small point that contained a much larger point. It had nothing, or almost nothing, to do with Ronald Reagan’s own character; it happened after Reagan had finished fuming to Nixon about how African leaders who’d thwarted American foreign policy at the United Nations were “monkeys,” and the two men had gotten off the phone.
Nixon then called Secretary of State William Rogers, to relay Reagan’s message and to warn Rogers that the White House should not express too much public support for the U.N., given the anger of the conservatives that Reagan represented. “As he said,” Nixon said, “he saw these, he said, these, uh, these cannibals on television last night.” At the word cannibals, the men shared a chuckle.
But Reagan hadn’t said cannibals. Nor was Nixon calling the leaders cannibals himself. He had conjured the word from somewhere, and attributed it to Reagan—in Reagan’s role as a voice of the bigoted faction of the public—and passed it along to Rogers, without anyone having directly produced it. It was a racist slur, yet no particular racist person could claim authorship of it. It just happened.
In response to the El Paso massacre, it’s been easy enough for people to draw the connection between the vitriol that Donald Trump and Fox News express toward immigrants and the professed motives of the person arrested for the slaughter. Open, seething hate of nonwhite people has become a recurring presence in this country under Trump.
The point to this article is to provide examples from the NYT and others that coddle the same sentiment. And that’s the deal, we can’t afford to coddle the feelings of people who have a philosophy of life that is anathema to the principles the underlie our Rule of Law and our Democracy. We protect their right to grasp and display their ideas under their right to Free Speech. Our Government can only do so much and that is why it’s up to us but it’s also up to our Leaders. Our Laws may not imprison folks for free speech but our leaders must not defend the indefensible nor make excuses for it or support the hatred and bigots that reside in their political parties. Our President should not represent everything our society has moved against on our path to a more perfect union.
We have to get rid of this scourge and it’s up to every one of us to do something in the space we have around our lives.
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?