Tag Archives: Charlottesville /Virginia

Donald Trump….The Republican President….

CreditSaul Loeb/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Back in the before-times, when all the polls predicted a landslide Hillary Clinton victory and establishment Republicans were pivoting away from Donald Trump like a chorus line, I had a postelection cautionary column in the hopper. It was imperative, I planned to write, that we remember who the Republicans were before Trump thundered in and tossed reality on its axis.

Don’t let them trick you, I was going to say. They will try — they are already trying — to use Trump as a foil, to quarantine the Trumpists and situate themselves, by contrast, on the side of goodness and rationality and respect. Do not let them off the hook so easily. Never forget that Trump wasn’t anomalous, he was the Republican Party’s quintessence, and their defection is a matter of self-preservation, not conscience.

Of course, I never got to write that essay. Trump won, and Republicans didn’t pivot. They wrapped their arms around his meaty torso and held on for dear life, while the most vile and violent factions of the Republican base got busy living their whole truth.

This past Friday night, those factions — swollen and bold from eight months of making America great again — marched in Charlottesville, Va. They carried torches, shouted Nazi slogans and rallied in protest of the prospect of removing a statue of Robert E. Lee.. The next day, according to police, James Fields Jr., a registered Republican, drove his car into a crowd of counterprotestors, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer.

Saturday afternoon, President Trump, in a statement that should taint his family name until human extinction, decried the violence “on many sides.” He personally did not mention white supremacy specifically until Monday, and then only under fierce pressure from the public and the media. Abruptly but unsurprisingly, on Tuesday afternoon, he doubled back to his original stance and again blamed “both sides.”

On one side, you see, you have white nationalists and neo-Nazis carrying assault weapons and advocating for a white, Christian, fascist ethno-state in America. On the other side, you have people who would prefer not to be systematically exterminated. Both are equally bad! To put it another way, on one side, you have the guy who law enforcement officials say deliberately ran a woman over with his car and the people who are celebrating her death. On the other, you have the woman who got run over by the car. Both are to blame! (By the way, if you are a good liberal grousing about how some anti-fascists are “just as bad” as fascists, you are riding Trump’s wake on this logical highway.)

During Trump’s two-day silence, congressional Republicans smelled a P.R. disaster and responded decisively. Senator Orrin Hatch, of Utah, tweeted: “We should call evil by its name. My brother didn’t give his life fighting Hitler for Nazi ideas to go unchallenged here at home.” Senator Marco Rubio, of Florida, described the events in Charlottesville as a “terror attack by #whitesupremacists.” Senator Chuck Grassley, of Iowa, called it “homegrown terrorism.” Senator Cory Gardner, of Colorado, wrote, “These were white supremacists and this was domestic terrorism.”

Speaker Paul Ryan tweeted: “The views fueling the spectacle in Charlottesville are repugnant. Let it only serve to unite Americans against this kind of vile bigotry.” And then, “White supremacy is a scourge.” Senator Jeff Flake, of Arizona, declared: “The #WhiteSupremacy in #Charlottesville does not reflect the values of the America I know. Hate and bigotry have no place in this country.”

Really? Which America is that? Surely not the America that was stolen from indigenous peoples, that was built by slaves, that interned the Japanese, that has the highest maternal death rate in the developed world, that acquitted George Zimmerman, that has had one black president, zero female presidents, zero Jewish or Muslim presidents, and zero openly gay or trans presidents in its 241-year history. There might be freedom and love and audacity in the weft of our national fabric, but hate and bigotry are in the warp…..

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Right leaning Breitbart blames the police for Virginia White Power demo violence?

The piece on the site quotes a left leaning blog’s[ ProPublica] obscure criticism of the Charlottesville Police and the Virginia governor as reasons to blame the police and government NOT the white power group for the violence and 3 deaths…

….’While they undoubtedly dispute ProPublica’s characterization of who was responsible for most of the violence at the official rally, multiple Unite the Right participants who agreed to be interviewed by Breitbart News were themselves largely in agreement about the failings of the policing strategy.

One man, who was vacationing in the United States from Finland, arrived with one of the last waves to get into Emancipation Park before the event was shut down. From his perspective, “these two groups of very polarly opposed political and social and moral views were forced into conflict” by policing tactics. He recounted his experience to Breitbart News:

I was expecting to enter a peaceful protest to protect this monument and part of United States history from utter and total rewriting. I entered with people from the United States who were aware there were going to be counter-protesters. They promised to keep me safe, which they did. But what happened was, the police force, which should have kept the protesting parties separate, in fact funneled the right-wing protesters, the people defending the monument, right into Antifa, [making them run] a gauntlet of Antifa to the monument … Then – I don’t know the details of it – on dubious legal grounds, [the police] declared the gathering of right-wing protesters unlawful. We were forced to leave the venue and run another gauntlet.

Similar accounts were given by two self-described Alt-Right activists in their mid-20s who came from the Midwest for the rally. Unlike the Finnish man above, the pair were with one of the first waves to get to Emancipation Park. They asked to be identified by the pseudonyms “George” and “Sean.”

“We’re seeing [projectiles] being thrown back and forth. The police seemed almost to misdirect people, sending them to the wrong side of the park so they would have to go through the crowd [of leftists],” George told Breitbart News, describing the progression into chaos.

The pair claimed that their pleas to police that Unite the Right participants, especially the featured speakers, were gravely endangered by running the “gauntlet” fell on deaf ears. “What was weird was that the police started forming a shield wall moving on to us, forcing us out onto this narrow staircase where we were right in front of Antifa,” George said of the scene as the rally was being dispersed.

Another Midwestern rally-goer, “Andrew,” in his early thirties, also came to the park with one of the early waves. His primary goal, he claims, was to stay out of the fray and capture video of the happenings. He spoke to Breitbart News about his own impressions of the policing:

We were told by police to walk around the perimeter, past one of the two parks where [the counter-protesters] had a permit to rally. Antifa came out and they started following us down a dead end where the police would not let us through to go to Lee Park, so we had to go back through the lines of [counter-protesters] … at that point a giant melee broke out. It’s hard to say who started it or how it started. It seemed to be some of the Black Lives Matter activists got in our faces and started assaulting us and the natural response was self-defense … What I didn’t expect was the inability or the refusal of the police department to respond to threats…..

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From the same piece Breitbart above was this direct report of white power supporters violence….It starts off  the Propublica piece…

…”There was nothing haphazard about the violence that erupted today in this bucolic town in Virginia’s heartland. At about 10 a.m. today, at one of countless such confrontations, an angry mob of white supremacists formed a battle line across from a group of counter-protesters, many of them older and gray-haired, who had gathered near a church parking lot. On command from their leader, the young men charged and pummeled their ideological foes with abandon. One woman was hurled to the pavement, and the blood from her bruised head was instantly visible.’….

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Charlottesville White Power Protests Turn Violent….

Chants against Blacks and Jews turned violent in Virginia today as white power demonstrators clashed with Black Lives Matter and other groups  squared off….

Members of white nationalists clash a group of counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S., August 12, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

The governor of Virginia declared a state of emergency in Charlottesville on Saturday as a protest of a plan to remove a statue of a Confederate general turned violent, leaving several people injured and threatening to plunge the area into chaos.

Protesters clashed in the historic college town, home to the University of Virginia, as white nationalists — some waving Confederate flags, chanting Nazi-era slogans, wearing helmets and carrying shields — converged on the statue of Robert E. Lee in the city’s Emancipation Park and the surrounding streets. The protest was the apparent culmination of more than a year of debate and division over the fate of the statue.

Saturday’s rally was supposed to start at noon, but the scene at the park had grown chaotic by late morning, with white nationalists and neo-Nazis facing off with Black Lives Matter demonstrators and other counterprotesters. Inside the park, which was encircled with metal barricades and the police, hundreds of white nationalists gathered around the Lee statue, chanting phrases like “You will not replace us,” and “Jew will not replace us.”

Outside the park, a huge mass of counterprotesters grew, shouting phrases like “Nazi scum.” By 11:35 a.m., the police had retreated, the barricades had come down and fights had broken out. People were seen clubbing one another in the streets. Pepper spray filled the air as the police attempted to contain the situation.

By 11 a.m., when the city declared the state of emergency, several people had been injured, including a University of Virginia police officer. It was unclear if the injuries were serious. The governor, Terry McAuliffe, followed with his own declaration an hour later.

“The acts and rhetoric in #Charlottesville over past 24 hours are unacceptable & must stop,” Governor McAuliffe said on Twitter. “A right to speech is not a right to violence.”……

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image…NYDailyNews.Com

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