Tag Archives: KKK

Fight the home-grown terrorists

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Domestic terrorism has entered the current political debate.

It is about damn time!

For the past four years, we have paid too little attention, or exerted too little emotional capital on the scourge of domestic, home-grown, corn-fed terrorists who hide in plain sight in our midst.

They presented themselves in full force on the Sixth of January when they marched to Capitol Hill, smashed their way into the Capitol Building, killed five human beings and threatened to stop the democratic process of certifying the results of a free and fair election.

President Biden has introduced the term “domestic terrorists” to the current lexicon, reviving it in the face of what the entire world witnessed early this past month.

FBI Director Christopher Wray told congressional committee members in 2019 that domestic terrorists posed an exponentially greater threat to Americans’ security that foreign terrorists working for, say, ISIS or al-Qaeda.

Did the Donald Trump administration act on that statement? Did it call out the proverbial cavalry to answer the call to root out the terrorists? No. It didn’t. Instead, we heard the president of the United States say in 2017 that there were good people on “both sides” of a dispute that erupted in Charlottesville, Va., between counter protesters and — get this — the Ku Klux Klan, Nazis and assorted white supremacists.

Yep. Donald Trump sought to elevate the Klansmen and Nazis to the same moral level of those who fought against them.

That cannot continue. Thank goodness we now have a president, Joe Biden, who knows better than to utter such moronic rhetoric out loud. You see, words have consequences and it is time this nation deal forthrightly with the terrorists who live among us.

The leadership required to commence that fight has just taken office in Washington, D.C. I believe the battle must be fought at least as long and hard as we are fighting the overseas enemies … and we mustn’t back away from calling what they are.

Terrorists.

Anger is palpable

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Has there ever been a presidential campaign — in the past century — that has evoked the kind of visceral anger between devotees of both major-party presidential candidates than this one?

Donald Trump’s minions are accusing Joe Biden’s fans of fomenting socialism. Biden’s side argues that Trump is unfit to serve as president. Trump’s team is suggesting that Biden’s mental acuity is slipping. Biden’s team says Trump has become unhinged.

They sides now are talking to each other. Trumpkins accuse Bidenistas of hating America. Reverse those accusations and we hear the Biden team suggesting that Trump’s side favors Russian interests over American interests.

Who is to blame for this?

Here it comes. I blame Donald John Trump fully, completely and without equivocation.

Trump has fomented this kind of anger with his own fiery rhetoric. His campaign launch in 2015 with a blistering attack on Latin American immigrants and continued with a call to ban all travel into the country from those who live in mostly Muslim countries.

It has hurtled downhill from there.

The nadir of Trump’s presidency might have been when he called Ku Klux Klansmen and Nazis “good people.” Hmm. My dear old Dad would have come totally unglued were he around to hear that one, given that he went to war in 1942 to fight those very Nazis.

The litany of divisive rhetoric is too lengthy to recount here. You know what I’m talking about. The consequence has been anger that has filtered into the ranks of those who adore Donald Trump and those who loathe him.

Joe Biden Jr. promises to heal the nation. He wants to restore our national “soul.” I pray that the American soul isn’t permanently damaged by the battering it has received during the tenure of the Donald Trump’s time as president.

QAnon needs to um … go!

(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

I have to make an admission.

This kook fringe called “QAnon” had gotten past me forl far too long. I didn’t know much about it. Then I learned more than I ever wanted to know.

These morons are loons, freaks, conspiracy nut jobs. They allege all kinds of lunacy, such as Democrats killing and eating children, that demons are invading the United States. They adhere to the usual lunacy, such as the birther crap involving Barack Obama and now, Kamala Harris.

QAnon espouses death to all Muslims.

But get a load of this: Donald Trump won’t disavow QAnon. He makes some goofball statement about it being “out there,” and that he doesn’t know anything about it, so he won’t pass judgment. “I’ve heard these are people that love our country and they just don’t like seeing it. I don’t know really anything about it other than they do supposedly like me. And they also would like to see problems in these areas … go away,” Trump said.

Huh? What the f*** is the matter with this clown?

I hear QAnon has some fans on the far right fringe. They include notables such as former Ku Klux Klan grand lizard David Duke, the hater who has endorsed Donald Trump’s re-election.

I want to hand out a bouquet to one Republican lawmaker, U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, who has condemned QAnon. “QAnon is a dangerous lunacy that should have no place in American politics,” Cheney said in a statement on Thursday.

There you go. Some sanity does exist within the GOP. If only it did in the Oval Office.

Amusing or disgusting?

I am trying to decide whether Donald Trump’s assorted campaign strategies amuse me or disgust me.

I’ll say it’s possibly a bit of both … but mostly disgusting.

I watched Trump try to suggest the other day that Joseph R. Biden is intent on destroying the “suburbs.” To which I raised my eyebrows and thought, “Huh? What in the world is the Demagogue in Chief saying?” Then it dawned on me.

He accuses the former vice president, as I understand what passes for logic in POTUS’s noggin, of creating a lawless inner city, which will drive people out of the city and into the ‘burbs. Thus, we have a situation, according to the No. 1 demagogue, where suburbs are populated by those who formerly lived in the inner city.

It’s a thinly disguised code for racial politics, my friends.

It ain’t funny, so I’ll cease being amused by that tactic. It’s downright disgusting, vile, venal and vicious. It is precisely the kind of trait that Trump demonstrates routinely, such as when he called the Klansmen and neo-Nazis who marched in Charlottesville “fine people.” Or how about when he continued to insist that the nation’s first black president wasn’t born in the United States and that he was constitutionally ineligible to campaign for the nation’s highest office?

You get the idea, yes?

So now Donald Trump says Joe Biden is going to destroy the ‘burbs.

Disgraceful.

National divide might take generations to mend

Oh, how I hate the division that is threatening our national fabric. Really, I believe we are heading for fracturing that might take generations to heal.

Donald Trump got elected president in 2016 promising, among other things, to heal the wounds that divided us during that brutal campaign. How has he done? Not well … not well at all!

Indeed, the president has done next to nothing to even attempt to heal those wounds. The Charlottesville, Va., riot in2017 provides an example of what I mean. Klansmen and Nazis gathered in Charlottesville to protest the taking down of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee; counter protesters showed up, one of the counter protesters got run down and killed by one of the Nazis. Trump then said there were “fine people … on both sides!” Oh, no. There weren’t fine folks on both sides, Mr. President.

It has been like during Trump’s term as president.

We are degenerating into a society with intense anger fueled in large part by those who adhere to the president’s scorched-Earth policy regarding his foes.

To be fair, I don’t mean to toss all the blame solely at the president’s feet. There has been a good bit invective hurled at him from the other side. Perhaps the most egregious utterance came from a newly elected Democratic congresswoman from Minnesota, Rashida Tlaib, who declared at a rally that “we’re going to impeach the motherfu****!”

I don’t remember, though, who started this political pi**ing match. At this point, it doesn’t matter to me.

What matters is that we’re entering a presidential election season shrouded under the clouds of probable impeachment over presidential solicitation of foreign government help in his re-election fight. Donald Trump is going to launch every rhetorical missile in his formidable arsenal at his foes, who are likely to return fire with equal gusto.

I am just a spectator and a chump blogger with plenty to say about all that is unfolding in front of us. I don’t like what I am seeing and hearing.

I want it to end. I’ll get to my proposed solution right here: It will end only when Donald Trump is no longer president of the United States. He needs to be shown the door.

MAGA rally could round out life experience, just as Klan rallies did

I am not going draw any ideological parallels between Donald Trump’s political rallies to Ku Klux Klan rallies, however, it strikes me that I ought to explain why I am drawn to the notion of attending one of those Trump events.

We have one coming up next Thursday at the American Airlines Center. The president will be there to whip his followers up and get ’em energized as he ramps up his re-election effort in the face of probable impeachment by the House of Representatives.

I want to attend this rally because I am drawn by the pull of seeing of these spectacles up close, from a ringside seat.

I had similar pulls years ago. I attended two Ku Klux Klan rallies. The first one occurred in the early 1990s in Orange County, Texas. The second rally was in 2006 in Amarillo, Texas.

Why did I go? I was working for daily newspapers at the time. No one assigned me to either of these events. I just felt compelled to go because I needed to get a sense of what drove Klansmen to say the things they do about African-Americans and what drove their supporters to cheer the verbal sewage that spilled out of the Klansmen’s mouths.

I got an earful at both events. In their way, both KKK rallies helped round out my professional experience in a fashion that I cannot to this day describe.

Perhaps the Trump rally in Dallas next week will fill out another blank in my journalism upbringing, even though I no longer work full time for any publication. I write this blog for myself. It is full of my own bias, which I do not hide from anyone.

Still, I find the idea of attending a presidential re-election rally to be an irresistible urge, even if it has anything to do with a president named Donald John Trump.

How can you ‘honor’ a Klansman?

How in the name of human decency can a governor of one of our 50 states proclaim a desire to honor the memory of a Ku Klux Klan leader?

That’s what happened in Tennessee, where Gov. Bill Lee signed a proclamation honoring Nathan Bedford Forrest, a onetime Confederate general … who also happened to be a slave trader and a grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

Honor a Klansman? Really?

This is disgraceful in the extreme. Lee’s declaration has drawn rebuke, understandably, from Democrats but also from fellow Republicans, such as U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

“This is wrong,” Cruz said on Twitter. “Nathan Bedford Forrest was a Confederate general & delegate to the 1868 Democratic convention. He was also a slave trader 1st Grand Wizard of the KKK. Tennessee should not have an official day honoring him. Change the law.”

Cruz also said he doesn’t necessarily disagree with honoring Confederate soldiers, but that’s another topic for another day.

Any law that sanctions such commemoration of individuals who took part in brutality against fellow human beings, such as the Klan, must be repealed.

Gov. Lee said he was following the law. Are you kidding? Does the law require a governor to honor someone who sanctioned the killing of others because of their race?

Disgraceful.

Trump vs. Biden: Battle of ‘Both Sides’

Joe Biden has fired a salvo at Donald Trump and Trump has responded by doubling down on arguably his most disgraceful moment as president of the United States.

The former vice president entered the 2020 presidential contest Thursday with a video in which he says the president’s comment on the Charlottesville, Va., riot demonstrates the depths he has taken the country. Trump said in 2017 that there were “fine people on both sides” of the riot; one of those “sides” featured KKK members and Nazis. Biden said the president attached “moral equivalence” between those who spread hate and those who fight them.

Well, Trump responded today by taking Biden’s bait. He said his “both sides” comment was the “perfect response.” Trump said he was referring to those who were protesting the takedown of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, who he described as a “great general.”

I’m trying to recall any mention of Gen. Lee in the moment when Trump made that “both sides” remark. I can’t discern any of it. He might have intended to make that reference — except that he didn’t.

Instead, he spoke about the alleged violent intent of those who counter-protested the hate groups’ march against the statue removal.

I believe VP Biden has punched Trump squarely in the biggest hot button he could find.

How do I know that? I don’t, exactly. However, the president’s response to the Charlottesville criticism illustrates how easily he can be rattled into making patently ridiculous assertions.

I must wonder: Will it matter that Donald Trump is a blundering buffoon who cannot be trusted to tell us the truth?

Study shows hate crime spike

How are we supposed to interpret this study?

Get a load of this: A University of North Texas analysis has disclosed that hate crimes increased 226 percent in those counties where Donald Trump staged political rallies during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Huh? But . . . wait! Don’t the Trump allies say there’s no relationship between the president and the reported resurgence of white supremacist hate groups?

Hmm. Well, I don’t know about that.

The study was done by Ayal Feinberg, a political science doctoral student at UNT, along with Regina Branton and Valerie Martinez-Ebers, two UNT political science professors.

They contend that the study reveals that the spike occurred in the months immediately after Trump held those rallies while he was campaigning for president of the United States.

According to The Hill newspaper: “They said their research sought to explain how some of Trump’s rhetoric ‘may encourage hate crimes.'”

How do you dismiss the findings, that such hate crimes spiked 226 percent in those counties were Trump fired ’em up with his red-hot rhetoric?

It’s difficult to separate the findings from the president’s speech.

The Hill’s story explains how the researchers collected their data. Read it here.

I have resisted suggesting that Trump’s rhetoric was directly responsible for horrific acts, such as — for example — the Christchurch, New Zealand, massacre of 50 people at two mosques the other day. The white supremacist/moron arrested, though, reportedly had been inspired by something Trump had said.

And, yes, the president did equate neo-Nazis, Klansmen and white supremacists with counterprotesters in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017 by referring to “very fine people on both sides” participating in that deadly riot.

This is the individual who serves as president of the Land of Opportunity.

Oh . . . my.

Trump emboldens racists, bigots?

“The president uses language often that’s very similar to the language used by these bigots and racists.”

That statement comes from someone who’s got a bone or two to pick with Donald Trump. His name is Tim Kaine, the Virginia Democratic U.S. senator who got beat running with Hillary Rodham Clinton on the 2016 presidential ticket. Kaine was Clinton’s VP running mate, so you can expect him to think little of the guy who defeated them.

Except that he is correct. Kaine’s comment comes in this period immediately after the massacre of 50 people who were worshiping in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

I am not going to “blame” the president directly for the carnage that erupted in New Zealand. It is instructive to acknowledge that Trump’s language has emboldened individuals and groups around the world. These would be the white nationalists, white supremacists, racists, bigots and haters.

We must not ignore the statements of people such as former Ku Klux Klan lizard/wizard David Duke who famously said that he considered Trump’s election as president to be a blessing.

The Charlottesville, Va., riot in 2017 that erupted when KKK members, Nazis and white nationalists protested the taking down of a Confederate statue provides another example. The demonstration produced a counter protest and a women was killed in the ensuing riot when a white nationalist allegedly ran her down with his car.

Trump’s response was to say there were “fine people . . . on both sides!” Yes, on “both sides.” He placed the haters on the same moral plain as those who were protesting them. Disgusting.

One of the gunmen who allegedly opened fire in Christchurch is a white supremacist who reportedly drew inspiration from the rhetoric he has heard from Trump and others in this country and around the world.

To blame Donald Trump directly for causing the tragedy that was unleashed Down Under would suggest that Trump makes his angry statements intending to create such misery. I do not believe that’s the case.

It is not a stretch to suggest that the president needs to acknowledge that his rhetoric has contributed to the toxicity that exists around the world.