I fiddled with the real-slow-waking-up Republican judge, FOX News commentator's op-ed below, before getting a telephone call from my homeless seer girlfriend in Key West, during which she described a dream last night of four white horsemen in shining knight armor, wielding big swords, galloping toward something they were going to engage. One horse was white, one was black, one was red, one was tan.
Judge Andrew Napolitano:
Trump has unleashed a torrent of hatred
“Now hatred is by far the Longest pleasure;
“Men love in haste, but they detest at leisure.”
-- George Gordon, Lord Byron
When I was an undergraduate at Princeton University during the height of the Vietnam War, surrounded by fellow students who condemned it and even some who later left our country to avoid fighting in it, the mantra used by supporters of the war was, "America, love it or leave it." In my misguided "Bomb Hanoi" youth, I uttered this phrase, which I now detest. Good for you waking up, Judge.
The phrase itself – with its command of the government's way or the highway – admits no dissenting opinions, suggests that all is well and proper here, and insinuates that moral norms and cultural values cannot be improved. The phrase itself is un-American. Maybe that depends on whom you ask? Try persuading American Vietnam War "support the troops" vets that that war was not worth one American or Vietnamese killed or wounded. How many Vietnam war deferments did Donald Trump get?
That era also produced such hate-filled catchphrases as: "Hey, hey, LBJ; how many kids did you kill today?" Those post-JFK and pre-Watergate times were harsh and bitter, as the nation was deeply divided over a war we now all know was useless and based on deception and fraud. Ditto, the 3 wars of Presidents Daddy and National Guard Vietnam war A.W.O.L.-er Baby Bush: Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq
We know from the publication of the Pentagon Papers that the incidents President Lyndon B. Johnson claimed justified the war never occurred, and the president and some of his generals regularly lied to the American public about the war. World War II PT Boat commander President John F. Kennedy was assassinated after he got cold feet about expanding the U.S. military in South Vietnam; Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated after coming out against the rich white men's Vietnam war; Daddy Bush's ambassador told Saddam Hussein the U.S. did not have a problem with him taking part of Kuwait; Baby Bush abdicated his presidential authority to Vice President Dick Cheney, former CEO of Halliburton, which (and who) stood to make billion$, perhaps trillion$) off wars in Afghanistan and Iraq).
The lies and deceptions – combined with the military draft and the deaths of 58,000 Americans – produced much hatred. The hatred was for people, rather than ideas. It was generational and ideological. And, it lay the foundation for the Bush/Cheney wars, which President Obama continued after promising hope and change, and accepting the Nobel Peace Prize, and appointing Hillary Clinton Secretary of State (War).
Youth hated age. Long hair hated short hair. Conservatives hated liberals. Many people hated LBJ personally. When President Gerald R. Ford declared the war had ended – though in a colossal defeat – the end produced a great national relief because the national hatred of people was over. In your dreams, Judge.
Now, that hatred is back. It never left. Look at what "Swift Boats for Bush" did to torpedo decorated Vietnam river gun boat commander, later turned war protester, John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign, which gave Baby Bush and Dick Cheney a second term in the White House.
I have known President Trump personally since 1986. The private Trump I have known is funny, charming and embracing. That is not the public Trump of today. The same private Trump who ran with Jerry Epstein? Who stiffed his contractors and subcontractors, and welched billion$ in debts, and went bankrupt, and turned to a Saudi oligarch to bail him out?
When he loudly called for four members of Congress – women of color who oppose nearly all his initiatives and who have questioned his fitness for office – to go back to the places from which they came, he unleashed a torrent of hatred. In fact, Judge, Trump unleashed hatred during his 2016 campaign, when he did not pronto denounce KKK Grand Wizard David Duke's endorsement, and Trump has ever since courted and egged on white supremacists (Confederate Flaggers, Neo-Nazis, etc.), and did you denounce him for that, Judge?
The "Go back" trope was used by white racists toward African-Americans for 100 years, from Reconstruction to the civil rights era, suggesting repulsively that they should go "back" to Africa; never mind their American births. It was uttered by the establishment at my grandfathers and many others who came here from southern Europe as children in the early days of the last century.
"Go back" is a rejection of the nation as a melting pot; a condemnation of one of America's founding values – E Pluribus Unum (Out of many, one). It implicates a racial or nativist superiority: We were here before you; this is our land, not yours; get out. Nativist hatred is an implication of moral or even legal superiority that has no constitutional justification in American government. Correct, Judge, but aren't you are a bit tardy raising that alarm?
All working in government in America have taken an oath to support the Constitution. The Constitution commands equal protection of the laws by government at all levels. No one is above the laws' obligations and no one is beneath the laws' protections. The Constitution not only commands of government both racial neutrality and color blindness, it generally prohibits government officials from making distinctions among people on the basis of immutable characteristics. In case you have not yet noticed, Judge, your old friend, now your president, thinks he has the power to pardon himself, and he opines that president for life sounds good to him. Did you forget, when your old friend and president was married to Ivana, he kept a book of Hitler's speeches in a cabinet beside his bed?
So, when the president defies these moral and constitutional norms and tells women of color to "Go back," he raises a terrifying specter. Judge, your old friend raised a terrifying specter in 2016, and where were your eyes and ears and Constitutional conscience and voice then?
The specter is hatred not for ideas he despises but for the people who embrace those ideas. The specter is also a dog whistle to groups around the country that hatred is back in fashion and is acceptable to articulate publicly. Since 2016,Trump proved beyond any doubt that hatred was there all along, and all it needed was a new champion, which he was pleased to be. A man, who had trampled everything Jesus stood for, was embraced as the messiah by American evangelicals.
Don't get me wrong. Even though hate speech – speech that expresses hatred for people, as opposed to hatred for ideas – stings and hurts, it is constitutionally protected. Huh? Hate speech against people is constitutionally protected, but hate speech against ideas is not? You sure about that, Judge? In the news just yesterday:
"Ole Miss students posed with guns at an Emmett Till memorial. Now they face a possible civil rights investigation.
"Three students were suspended from their fraternity house, Kappa Alpha, after we shared an Instagram photo one of the men posted that was taken in front of a sign commemorating the murder of the 14-year-old black youth in 1955."
The remedy for hate speech is not to silence the hater but to shame him. And the most effective way to do that is with more speech. Actually, Judge, the remedy is YOU lead the charge to vote Trump out off office in 2020, and failing there, you take up arms and lead the rebellion.
But when the hate speech comes from a shameless president, we have a problem. What do you mean, "we", paleface? You voted for him. You supported him until now, didn't you? How will you explain that to God at your roll call? Do you think being a Christian or Catholic will persuade Jesus that you are one of his?
The problem is that presidential hatred produces division among people and destroys peaceful dialogue. When thousands of people at a Trump rally in North Carolina recently chanted, "Send her back" referring to a congresswoman born in Somalia – and Trump tweeted that the four congresswomen (including three born in the U.S.) should "Go back" to where they came from – the inescapable image was of a president trying to divide rather than unite. My dear, Judge, your old friend and president has been dividing since he filed to run for president in 2016.
At first, Trump seemed to welcome the chants. Then, two days later, he distanced himself from those who chanted. Then, three days after that, he praised the chanters. Hmmm, Judge. Did you wonder, yet, if your old friend and president has multiple personality disorder; is he possessed by a demon?
When a Louisiana police officer tweeted that one of the congresswomen Trump targeted deserved a round – he was referring to a bullet – he and a supportive colleague were fired. And in New York City, hatred for cops has led to group assaults on them, along racial lines. You understand, don't you, Judge, that that police officer is a proxy for a great many American cops and private citizens - perhaps half of Americans? And, your old friend and president is their messiah.
Hatred is so volatile and destructive that, once unleashed, it takes on a life of its own. It is cover for our deepest and darkest instincts. And it is a cousin to violence, as those Louisiana and Manhattan cops know. Yep, and where were you in 2016, Judge?
It also captivates our attention. Could that be the president's wish – that we think about hatred of his targets rather than the testimony of former Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who spent two years investigating the president and testified before two House committees Wednesday? Looks to me that Mueller is God's Special Counsel, and he leaves for all Americans to indict or clear themselves in God's Court, by how they respond to his Report.
This business of the hatred of people is so dangerous because to some, as Lord Byron wrote, hatred is perversely pleasing. It gives them shelter in a mob, it lets them hurl venom with anonymity, and it regenerates itself. It must be rejected loudly in all its forms – especially when it comes from the president. So, Judge. How about you start the chant, "Send him back, Send him back, to New York City, where the US Attorney Office awaits him with open arms!!!" 😂😂😂😂
Post a Comment