- AARP Online Community
- Ideas, Tips & Answers
- Home & Family
- Work & Jobs
- Health Forums
- Brain Health
- Conditions & Treatments
- Healthy Living
- Medicare & Insurance
- Retirement Forum
- Social Security
- Retirement Archive
- Money Forums
- Budget & Savings
- Invest, Diversify, Integrate Your Financial Life
- Scams & Fraud
- Travel Forums
- Solo Travel
- Home & Family Forums
- Dogs, Cats and Pets
- Friends & Family
- Introduce Yourself
- Late Life Divorce
- Love, Sex & Dating
- Our Front Porch
- Random Thoughts and Conversations
- Singles Perspective Revisited
- Comunidad Hispana de AARP
- Home & Family Archive
- The Girlfriend
- Politics & Society Forums
- Politics, Current Events
- Technology Forums
- Computer Questions & Tips
- About Our Community
- Rewards for Good
- Entertainment Forums
- Rock N' Roll
- TV Talk
- Let's Play Bingo!
- Leisure & Lifestyle
- Writing & Books
- Good News
- Entertainment Archive
- Caregiving Forums
- Grief & Loss
- Work & Jobs
- Work & Jobs
- AARP Help
- Benefits & Discounts
- General Help
Re: Pittsburgh, Trump and the language of hate
Words do matter. Hateful speech begets hateful speech, and, in some cases, hateful acts. Trump's constant, insidious rhetoric is literally bringing out the worst in people. It makes me anxious when I see how many people he has brainwashed into thinking that whatever he says is acceptable. I saw the other day a reporter ask a Trump follower what he thinks when Trump seems to incite violence at his rallies, and the guy said, "I don't care what he says. He's the best president we've ever had!" My God, people, not only should you vote, but tell your eligible children and grandchildren to vote too. Their future is at stake.
Pittsburgh, Trump and the language of hate
Pittsburgh, Trump and the language of hate
he words of an anti-Semitic killer and the words of the president of the United States should not intersect. In America in 2018, they do.
The paranoid fears of mentally unstable citizens shouldn’t be fed by the unchecked rantings of the president of the United States. In America in 2018, they are.
The president of the United States should not speak in anti-Semitic code words or promote anti-Semitic conspiracies. In America in 2018, he does.
The man accused of killing 11 Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue ranted about “globalists” and actually criticized President Donald Trump for not being enough of a “nationalist.” Trump himself speaks forebodingly of globalists, and has proudly declared himself a nationalist.
The man allegedly responsible for the deadliest attack against Jews in American history saw the migrant caravan slowly moving through Mexico as an invading force that must be stopped. Trump has done everything he can to make that caravan seem like an existential threat to the country.
The Pittsburgh terrorist — because what else do you call someone who slaughters innocents in a place of worship? — bought into right-wing conspiracy theories about liberal billionaire George Soros. Trump has spun conspiracies about Soros, suggesting, among things, that he’s funding liberal protesters.
Words like “globalist” and “nationalist,” along with conspiratorial talk that paints a Jewish billionaire as a malevolent force, are anti-Semitic dog whistles, and they have been since long before Trump entered the political arena.
Don’t take my word for it. Just look at the language the Pittsburgh terrorist used, the same language used by white supremacists in the most vile corners of the internet.
Trump uses that language willfully, unapologetically. He has been warned about it, told it’s the lexicon of the darkest souls among us.
And he doesn’t care.
Last week, a Florida man who latched onto Trump’s cult of personality and guzzled the paranoia the president dispenses was charged with targeting prominent Democrats — including Soros, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama — with pipe bombs. The targets were all people Trump routinely attacks on Twitter and at his rallies.
In the wake of that massive assassination attempt, Trump was asked if he should tone down his rhetoric. The president said no, and he suggested that if anything he should “tone it up.”
One of the pipe bombs was sent to CNN headquarters in New York City. Monday morning, Trump sent a tweet calling the media “the true Enemy of the People” and another blaming anger and division in America on “Fake & Dishonest reporting.”
A sticker bearing the words “Dishonest Media” was one of the many pro-Trump stickers covering the alleged bomber’s van. Another read: “CNN Sucks.”
Trump is not directing anyone to commit acts of violence. He doesn’t have to — the language he uses does the work for him.
He is a conductor. His orchestra is Fox News and its far-right-wing pundits, Republicans who seek political gain by riding the president’s coattails and parroting his language, and a Twitter and Facebook army of aggrieved Americans eager to blame their problems on “others.”
At a rally Friday, Trump warned his faithful that Democrats are “openly encouraging millions of illegal aliens to break our laws, violate our borders and bankrupt our country.”
He said: “Democrats’ extreme immigration policies will overwhelm your schools, your hospitals and communities, and strain public resources to the breaking point.”
Trump doesn’t have to use this kind of language. He could easily make a point about differences in immigration policies without effectively cutting-and-pasting the ominous tones and language of white supremacy.
He doesn’t have to call himself a nationalist. He doesn’t have to speak about menacing “globalists.” He does it to be defiant, to trigger the pleasure centers of supporters who know those words are meant for them, signals that their views are now part of the mainstream.
He does it to benefit himself, plain and simple.
Trump said he plans to visit Pittsburgh, as presidents often do in the wake of a tragedy. A group of the city’s Jewish leaders responded with a letter telling the president he is not welcome:
“For the past three years your words and your policies have emboldened a growing white nationalist movement. You yourself called the murderer evil, but yesterday’s violence is the direct culmination of your influence. President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you fully denounce white nationalism.”
I’ll say it again: Trump is not directing anyone to commit acts of violence.
But he is speaking a language of hate, the same language used by the hateful man accused of killing 11 Jews in a synagogue, the same language used by the hateful man who allegedly mailed pipe bombs that could have killed all manner of people.
When Elie Wiesel accepted the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986, he said this: “We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
The words of an anti-Semitic killer and the words of the president of the United States should not intersect. In America in 2018, they do.
Which side are you on?
- Trump's swamp
- GOP failed logic
- GOP can't govern
- DONALD TRUMP
- GOP LIES
- GOP incompetence
- Robert Mueller
- GOP victimhood
- PRESIDENT TRUMP
- White Supremacy
- GOP hypocrisy
- GOP Hatred
- Climate Change
- Illegal immigration
- James Comey