When it comes to the rhetoric of hate, the cursing of politicians, and the shouting down of speakers, the right is not innocent, but the left is infinitely more guilty…
If President Trump’s supporters are truly “a basket of deplorables… racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic,” and “irredeemable,” as Hillary Clinton described them to an LGBT crowd, is not shunning and shaming the proper way to deal with them? So a growing slice of the American left has come to believe.
Friday, gay waiters at the Red Hen in Lexington, Virginia, appalled that White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was being served, had the chef call the owner. All decided to ask Sanders’ party to leave. When news reached the left coast, Congresswoman Maxine Waters was ecstatic, yelling to a crowd, “God is on our side!” Maxine Waters’s raving went on: “And so, let’s stay the course. Let’s make sure we show up wherever … you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them, and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.” Apparently, the left had been issued its marching orders.
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen was heckled and booed at a Mexican restaurant last week, and then hassled by a mob outside her home. White House aide Steven Miller was called out as a “fascist” while dining in D.C. Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi was driven from a movie theater.
Last June, the uglier side of leftist politics turned lethal. James Hodgkinson, 66-year-old volunteer in Bernie Sanders’ campaign, opened fire on GOP congressmen practicing for their annual baseball game with the Democrats. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise was wounded, almost mortally. Had it not been for Mr. Scalise’s security detail, Mr. Hodgkinson might have carried out a mass atrocity.
And the cultural atmosphere is becoming toxic. Actor Robert De Niro brings a Hollywood crowd to its feet with cries of “F— Trump!” Peter Fonda says that 12-year-old Barron Trump should be locked up with pedophiles. Comedienne Kathy Griffin holds up a picture of the decapitated head of the president. To suggest what may be happening to the separated children of illegal migrants, ex-CIA Director Michael Hayden puts on social media a photo of the entrance to the Nazi camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
What does this tell us about America in 2018?
The left, to the point of irrationality, despises a triumphant Trumpian right and believes that to equate it with fascists is not only legitimate but also a sign that the accusers are the real, moral, righteous, and courageous dissenters in these terrible times. Historians are calling the outbursts of hate unprecedented. They are not.
In 1968, mobs cursed Lyndon Johnson, who had passed all the civil rights laws, howling, “Hey, hey, LBJ: How many kids did you kill today!”
After Dr. King’s assassination, a hundred cities, including the capital, were looted and burned. Scores died. U.S. troops and the National Guard were called out to restore order. Soldiers returning from Vietnam were spat upon. Cops were gunned down by urban terrorists. Bombings and bomb attempts were everyday occurrences. Campuses were closed down. In May 1971, tens of thousands of radicals went on a rampage to shut down D.C.
A cautionary note to progressives: Extremism is how the left lost the future to Nixon and Reagan. But though our media may act like this is 1968, we are not there yet. That was history; this is still largely farce.
The comparisons with Nazi Germany are absurd. Does anyone truly believe that the centers where the children of illegal migrants are being held, run as they are by liberal bureaucrats from the Department of Health and Human Services, are like Stalin’s Gulag or Hitler’s camps? This is hyperbole born of hysteria and hate.
Consider. Two million Americans are in jails and prisons, all torn from their families and children. How many TV hours have been devoted to showing what those kids are going through? Thirty percent of all American children grow up with only one parent. How many TV specials have been devoted to kids separated for months, sometimes years, sometimes forever, from fathers and mothers serving in the military and doing tours of duty overseas in our endless wars? Because of U.S. support for the UAE-Saudi war against the Houthi rebels in Yemen, hundreds of thousands of children face the threat of famine. Those Yemeni kids are not being served burgers in day care centers. How many Western TV cameras are recording their suffering?
When it comes to the rhetoric of hate, the cursing of politicians, the shouting down of speakers, the right is not innocent, but the left is infinitely more guilty. It was to the Donald Trump rallies, not the Bernie Sanders rallies, that the provocateurs came to start the fights. Why? Because if you have been told and believe your opponents are fascists, then their gatherings are deserving not of respect but of disruption. And, as was true in the 1960s, if you manifest your contempt, you will receive the indulgence of a media that will celebrate your superior morality.
Republished with gracious permission from Mr. Buchanan (June 2018).
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