How NOT to respond to shootings: Calls for political violence follow El Paso & Dayton
The fatal shootings in El Paso and Dayton seem to have been weaponized, with activists claiming to oppose violence and hate now calling for violence against political rivals they hate. How is this democracy?
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) somehow found himself the object of the proverbial two-minute hate after the shootings. Protesters besieged his home, wishing him dead. Twitter celebrities engaged in fantasies of violence, endorsed and amplified by TV stars and media contributors, who angrily demanded an end to all nuance and descent into black-and-white, us-versus-them open war – all in the name of fighting “hate” and “fascism,” of course.
Last week, Democrats were calling McConnell “Moscow Mitch,” refusing to let the long-dead horse of Russiagate repose in peace. On Monday, they took it a step further, blaming him personally for the weekend’s deaths in the El Paso and Dayton.Also on rt.com Protesters threaten to stab Mitch McConnell outside his home (VIDEO)
For more than two hours, protesters picketed McConnell’s home, yelling obscenities. One of them can be heard on the Facebook live stream wishing someone “just stab the motherf**er in the heart, please.”
“We’re out here because he wants thoughts and prayers, when another white man massacres people,” another protester said, apparently eager to jump on the media narrative that the shootings were a product of racial animus – something that is still being investigated.
One of the trending hashtags on Monday was #MassacreMoscowMitch, prompting New York Times columnist and CNN’s “most influential Muslim” Wahajat Ali to declare, “I still have faith in America” – though he deleted the tweet after backlash.
This hashtag trended bc people called out Mitch McConnell for his refusal to let the Senate vote on gun control and election security bills. The right wing knows it but in bad faith are trying to "both sides" & shame. In good faith I deleted it but they're not fooling anyone. pic.twitter.com/UAhXrVAA3T— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) August 6, 2019
Fellow CNN contributor Reza Aslan went even further, arguing “there is no longer any room for nuance” after the shootings, and that supporters of President Donald Trump – “ALL OF THEM” – are “depraved” and evil racists who “must be eradicated from society.”
1) “Scholar of Religions” @rezaaslan used genocidal rhetoric against Trump supporters yesterday.He has not been suspended.No public figures on the left - to my knowledge have condemned him.This is beyond a “double standard.”It’s pure, undistilled bigotry. pic.twitter.com/SNQSg3b3Lj— Will Chamberlain (@willchamberlain) August 5, 2019
“If I get killed in a mass shooting please cremate me and throw my ashes into Mitch McConnell’s and Dana Loesch’s eyes while I’m still smoldering,” a Twitter celebrity with nearly 300,000 followers posted on Monday. Loesch is a former spokeswoman for the National Rifle Association (NRA).
The tweet was quickly endorsed by TV actress Debra Messing (‘Will & Grace’).
Then there was Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), who published the names and employers of Trump donors from his district, saying they are “fueling a campaign of hate that labels Hispanic immigrants as ‘invaders’.”
Democratic Texas Rep. Joaquin Castro, who chairs his brother's presidential campaign, publicly posted the names and employers of Trump donors in San Antonio https://t.co/Ppn8zcFw9q— Peter J. Hasson (@peterjhasson) August 6, 2019
In the wake of the shootings, Democrats demanded that President Trump denounce and disavow racism and white supremacy. Yet when he did so, unequivocally, they claimed it wasn’t enough – and turned to pressure the New York Times into amending its headline about Trump’s speech to reflect their feelings rather than facts.Also on rt.com NYT changes front-page mass shootings headline after backlash from Dem 2020 hopefuls
It is more than ironic that all this vitriol comes in the name of fighting “hate” and “violence,” but that’s just the thing. To its purveyors, their own hate and violence are virtuous speech, while the speech of their opponents is unacceptable violence – because they are good, and their enemies are evil, the classic “who/whom” perspective.
In their zeal, they are eager to exploit the deaths of 31 Americans before their bodies are even cold. There is no thought spared for their mourning families, or the republic being unraveled by this kind of “politics.” Left unchecked, it will lead to sectarian warfare – and far more deaths.
By Nebojsa Malic
Nebojsa Malic is a Serbian-American journalist and political commentator, working at RT since 2015
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.