The condemnations are rolling in from the Republican Party’s side of the great American political divide.
U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas, weighed in with a message he delivered from the Balkans, where he is touring during the August congressional break.
Regarding the white supremacists who instigated the Charlottesville, Va., riot that resulted in the horrific death of a counter protester, Cotton referred to the neo-Nazis as “contemptible little men” who deserve the full brunt of whatever punishment the law would deliver to them.
And yet …
The nation’s Republican in chief, the president of the United States, seems to be standing by that shamefully tepid statement in which he lays the blame for the violence “on many sides.”
He refuses to call the white nationalists/racists/neo-Nazis out by name. Donald Trump refuses to do what he and others insisted Barack Obama do when talking about international terrorism; they insisted that the former president state specifically “radical Islamic terrorists.”
It’s clear to me now that whatever measures the president might take to atone for his egregious error of omission must refer to his mistake. He must acknowledge out loud — and in full voice — that he erred when he spoke of “many sides.” He had a chance to condemn the hate groups that foment the violence we witnessed but he blew it.
Anything short of a presidential mea culpa will lend utter hollowness to whatever he says now.
Do you expect him to do such a thing? Neither do I.
What do you know about this?
First daughter Ivanka Trump has said something Dad couldn’t bring himself to say, which is to condemn white nationalists, and neo-Nazis.
Ivanka fired off a tweet that said: “There should be no place in society for racism, white supremacy and neo-nazis.”
The young woman just took several giant steps beyond what her father, the president of the United States, said rather meekly about the Charlottesville, Va., riot that resulted in the death of a counter protester.
It all started when a group of white supremacists and Nazi sympathizers protested the decision to take down a state of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. It went downhill from the get-go.
The president then blamed “many sides” for the violence, refusing to call out the hate groups that provoked the riot in the first place. The president seeks to portray himself as a strong man. He instead comes off as a weakling, a wimp.
So now Ivanka has entered the discussion with a patently reasonable and well-aimed statement that should have come from the president of the United States.
There’s been no shortage of outrage being expressed today over the violence that erupted in Charlottesville, Va.
It has come from across the partisan divide. Republicans and Democrats alike have spoken eloquently about their outrage at the violence perpetrated by the white supremacists who gathered there to make whatever statements they want to make. They have spoken as one.
I want to share a statement that came from U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, the Texas Republican who’s been a target of this blog on many occasions over the years. Today, though, I want to applaud Sen. Cruz for speaking eloquently and passionately about an incident that has consumed the nation.
It’s tragic and heartbreaking to see hatred and racism once again mar our great Nation with bloodshed. Heidi’s and my prayers are with the loved ones of those killed and injured in the ongoing violence in Charlottesville. The First Amendment protects the rights of all Americans to speak their minds peaceably, but violence, brutality, and murder have no place in a civilized society.
The Nazis, the KKK, and white supremacists are repulsive and evil, and all of us have a moral obligation to speak out against the lies, bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred that they propagate. Having watched the horrifying video of the car deliberately crashing into a crowd of protesters, I urge the Department of Justice to immediately investigate and prosecute this grotesque act of domestic terrorism.
These bigots want to tear our country apart, but they will fail. America is far better than this. Our Nation was built on fundamental truths, none more central than the proposition “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”.
Well said, sir. Thank you.
We hear it all … the … time.
Someone takes the heat for a political error or for acting badly and they seek to deflect the harsh negative light by saying, “Yes, but both sides are guilty of it, too.”
Both sides do it. All sides do it. Don’t blame me. Or the people on my side. Look at the other guys, too.
It’s a dodge. A ruse. A rhetorical escape hatch.
So it was just like that when the president of the United States spoke about the violence in Charlottesville, Va. Three people are known to have died in the violence. The president’s remarks came before the death toll had risen to that level.
But he did that equivocation thing. He condemned the violence that was provoked by the presence of white nationalists/supremacists in Charlottesville; they were there to protest the taking down of Confederate monuments. All hell broke loose.
Did the president condemn the hate mongers? Oh, not precisely. He watered it down by saying “many sides” are to be condemned.
Many sides? Are you bleeping kidding me?
Compare that with what Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe said. He told the white supremacists to “go home.” They have no place in Virginia. He belittled their claim to be “patriots,” saying they are “anything but” patriots.
An equally strong and unequivocal statement should have come also from Donald J. Trump. It didn’t. The president has failed yet another leadership test.