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Thoughts on Events the Week of August 14

Posted in Uncategorized by EloiSVM42 on August 26, 2017

Charlottesville: The liberal reaction following the violent protest in Charlottesville, VA was a lot of overwrought political correctness and naïve expectations. The situation is more complicated and nuanced than that.

The word Nazi has been thrown around ceaselessly, carelessly and inaccurately. There were no Nazis in Charlottesville. Even our citizens who call themselves “neo-Nazis” are not Nazis. Nazis live in Germany, and there are very few, if any, left. Let’s put this word on the shelf except when talking about World War II

The protestors at Charlottesville were garden variety bigoted white supremacists. (That our president agrees with them, about which more below.)

An important thing for us to keep in mind about the protestors (and anti-protestors) is that their speech is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution. The violence that some of them engaged in is not protected, nor of course the murder of a protestor; that sure as hell isn’t.

These people feel they have grievances, and that their government has let them down. I empathize with this, up to a point. There was ample evidence to support this belief on the scene in Charlottesville. What kind of functioning, responsible government would allow people like these – with anger on their minds and hatred in their hearts – to walk around in public carrying guns?!

Surprising to some, Trump sides with the violent white supremacy protestors, and he was willing to say so in public. There are two flaws to public reaction: first, it is disingenuously ex-post-facto. Trump has been, well, trumpeting his views for two years now. People voted for him in spite of, or perhaps because of, these views. It’s too late to take a dim view of them now.

Second, we can’t prohibit Trump from expressing these views. His speech is protected by the same First Amendment. If he wants to admit that he’s a bigoted, racist, that’s his privilege.

In fact, Trump’s views are shared by a large percentage of our population. He won 62,984,825 votes – 46.4% of the total – about three million fewer than Hillary, but in just the right locations to control the Electoral College.

Every one of Trump’s voters knew exactly what Trump is and what he stands for. Look around you. Almost half the people you see voted for Trump, whether they say so or not (many of them won’t admit it, especially to pollsters). This is not a “fringe.” This is mainstream.

These voters – uneducated, bigoted, xenophobic, misogynistic, lazy, prone to violence, currently unemployable and many drug addled – remain a drag on our economy and our society. We must deal with them as best we can; they are our fellow citizens. But I’m damned if I can respect them.

Status of the States: I can’t even talk about the South right now.

Coming Attractions: Apropos of the Trump voters in Charlottesville, in the next week or two, I will review Hillbilly Elegy, by J.D. Vance.

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