Based on the visceral overreaction of the left and the mainstream media, to President Donald Trump’s comments this week, it would appear that there are many who are hell-bent on fomenting and fostering another Civil War. This one is shaping up to be even less civil since it’s not based on facts and established verities, but rather identity politics and ideological presumptions, assumptions, and aspersions.
The latest salvo in this uncivil war was precipitated by an event in Charlottesville, VA last week. The Denver Post described the event, “Chaos and violence turned to tragedy Saturday as hundreds of white nationalists, neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan members – planning to stage what they described as their largest rally in decades to ‘take America back’ – clashed with counter-protesters in the streets and a car plowed into crowds, leaving one person dead and 19 others injured.” The nationalists were protesting a decision by city officials to remove all vestiges of Virginia’s Confederate history, including a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
President Trump denounced the violence by the protestors and the counter-protesters, “We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides, on many sides. It has been going on for a long time in our country. It has been going on for a long, long time. It has no place in America.”
When asked what Trump meant by saying “on many sides,” a White House official responded, “The President was condemning hatred, bigotry, and violence from all sources and all sides. There was violence between protesters and counter-protesters today,” the official said.
The left and the media erupted apoplectically for denouncing both side’s roles in the violence. Videos of the counter-protesters including masked members of Antifa, the so-called anti-fascist group that ironically employs fascist tactics, attacking protesters, and vice versa. Hate and violence were evidenced in abundance by all those involved in the violent confrontation.
In an obvious attempt to appease those critical of his denunciation of all such violence, not just that perpetrated by one side of the confrontation, Trump later stated, “Racism is evil,” said Mr. Trump, delivering a statement from the White House at a hastily arranged appearance meant to halt the growing political threat posed by the unrest. “And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the K.K.K., neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”
The left and the media’s apoplexy multiplied, as they were not moved nor mollified by the President’s specific denunciation of the racist nationalistic groups. For any who still have a semblance of cognitive functionality and a modicum of conscience, both statements were cogent and proper. If hate, bigotry, and violence are unacceptable to us as a society, they’re universally unacceptable by all who so engage.
Such conduct is not to be condoned by any group. No one and no collection of individuals is entitled or justified in such conduct. To believe differently is the ultimate in hypocrisy and duplicity. The antipathy and bigotry of Antifa and the leftists seems no less ardent than that of the white supremacists. Certainly, any sentient person can see the illegitimacy of hate, bigotry, and violence being condoned for some, but condemned for others. What conceivable belief system can warrant bigotry denouncing bigotry, and then acting on such hate with violence? Only a warped, convoluted, and immoral one!
To make matters worse, several legitimate sources have identified the organizer of the nationalist rally, Jason Kessler, was an ardent Barack Obama supporter, a member of Occupy Wall Street, and an ardent leftist supporting traditional liberal causes like gun control. It is not inconceivable that the violent confrontation in Charlottesville was a setup from the start, to foment the very “civil war” Kessler is now calling for.
Compounding the idiocy of the media’s denunciation of Trump is the wholly illogical attempts to classify and identify all Trump supporters or voters as sympathizers with the nationalist bigots. These logical fallacies of gross generalization and false equivalence are employed to further divide us based on presumed political identities rather than on ideals and principles. Such identity political tactics are wholly congruent with the Saul Alinsky model of creating a cultural revolution by “Picking the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.“ Identity politics does precisely that, and is intended to sow the kind of discord and irrational “righteous indignation” that is stretching and tearing our social fabric.
The illogic and idiocy of attempting to classify all Trump supporters and voters as sympathizers of racist groups is as untenable as it would be to classify all Hillary Clinton voters as sympathizers with the racist groups La Raza and Black Lives Matter. And yes, BLM is racist, as they proved by their denunciation of efforts by some to correctly aver that all lives matter, not just black ones.
The other component of this that is so disturbing is how far the media and the left (yes, I know that’s redundant) are willing to go to depose the president. Abject duplicity and prevarication, in spite of the evidence and illogical inconsistency in applying the law, constitute egregious immoral tactics by our clearly intellectually bankrupt Fourth Estate. The depth of their depravity knows no bounds. And if they succeed, it only proves the veracity of Jonathan Gruber, the MIT professor who consulted with Obama on Obamacare. He is on video proclaiming the only reason Obamacare was able to be passed is because of the “stupidity of the average American voter.” If we collectively fall for this idiocy, we are equally bankrupt, morally and intellectually, and stupid.
This new civil war being waged by the left based on identity politics, which is so aptly parroted and promulgated by the mainstream media, not just deserves, but requires a universal denunciation and rejection. Deal with this inanity based on logic, facts, and reason, not based on emotion, gross generalizations, and fictional appellations and aspersions.
We mustn’t fall for their tactics and their incessant false premises. If there’s to be a new civil war, let it be won by reason and rationality, not by the specious and destructive tactics of those seeking an American cultural revolution and the removal of a president based on emotion and identity politics.
Associated Press award winning columnist Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, Idaho and is a graduate of Idaho State University with degrees in Political Science and History and coursework completed toward a Master’s in Public Administration. He can be reached at [email protected].