A Philosopher's Blog

Trump’s White Nationalists, Again

Posted in Ethics, Philosophy, Politics, Race, Uncategorized by Michael LaBossiere on August 16, 2017

On the face of it, condemning white supremacists and neo-Nazis is one of the politically easiest things to do. Trump, however, seems incapable of engaging in this simple task. Instead, he has continued to act in ways that lend support to the alt-right. After a delayed and reluctant condemnation of the alt-right, Trump returned to his lane by making two claims. The first is the claim that “there is blame on both sides.” The second is the claim that there are good people on both sides. On the face of it, both claims are false. That said, these claims will be given more consideration than they deserve.

If one accepts a very broad concept of blame, then it would be possible to claim that there is blame on both sides. This could be done in the following way. The first step is asserting that a side is responsible if an event would not have taken place without its involvement. This is based, of course, on the notion that accountability is a matter of “but for.” In the case at hand, the relevant claim would be that but for the presence of the counter-protestors, there would have been no violence against them and Heather Heyer would not have been murdered. On this notion of responsibility, both sides are to blame.

While this concept of blame might have some appeal, it is obviously flawed. This is because the application of the principle would entail that any victim or target of a crime or misdeed would share some of the blame for the crime or misdeed. For example, but for a person having property, they would not have been robbed. As another example, but for being present during a terrorist attack, the person would not have been killed. As such, meriting blame would require more than such a broad “but for” condition.

A possible reply to this counter is to argue that the counter-protestors were not mere targets, but were active participants. That is, co-belligerents and co-instigators. To use an analogy, if a bar fight breaks out because two people start insulting each other and then start swinging, then both parties do share the blame. Trump seems to regard what happened in Virginia as analogous to this sort of a bar fight. If this is true, then both sides would bear some of the blame.

Of course, even if both parties were belligerent, then there are still grounds for assigning blame to one side rather than another. For example, if someone goes to a party to misbehave and someone steps up to counter this and is attacked, then the attacker would be to blame. This is because of the moral difference between the two parties: one is acting to commit a misdeed, the other is trying to counter this. In the case of Virginia, the alt-right is in the wrong. They are, after all, endorsing morally wicked views that should be countered.

There is, of course, also the obvious fact that it was a member of the alt-right that is alleged to have driven a car into the crowd, killing one person and injuring others. As such, if any blame is to be placed on a side, it is to be placed on the alt-right.

It could be argued that the action of one person in the alt-right does not make the entire group guilty of the crime. This is certainly a reasonable claim—a group is not automatically responsible for the actions of its worst members, whether the group is made up of Muslims, Christians, whites, blacks, conservatives or liberals. That said, the principles used to assign collective responsibility need to be applied consistently—people have an unfortunate tendency to use different standards for groups they like and groups they dislike. I would certainly agree that the alt-right members who did not engage in violence or instigate it are not responsible for the violence. However, it could be argued that the rhetoric and ideology of the alt-right inherently instigates and urges violence and evil behavior. If so, then all members who accept the ideology of the alt-right are accountable for being part of a group that is dedicated to doing evil. I now turn to Trump’s second claim.

Trump also made the claim that there are good people on both sides. As others have noted, this seems similar to his remarks about Mexicans being rapists and such, but also there being some good Mexicans. As such, Trump’s remark might simply be a Trumpism—something that just pops out of his mouth with no meaning or significance, like a burp. But, let it be assumed for the sake of discussion that Trump was trying to say something meaningful.

Trump is certainly right that there are good people on the side opposed to the alt-right. After all, the alt-right endorses a variety of evil positions and good people oppose evil. As far as good people being in the alt-right, that is not as clear. After all, as was just noted, the values expressed by the alt-right include evil views and it would be unusual for good people to endorse such views. This can, of course, be countered by arguing that the alt-right is not actually evil (which is presumably what many members believe—few people think of themselves as the villains). It can also be countered by asserting that there are good people who are in the alt-right out of error (they are good people, but err in some of their beliefs) or who hope to guide the movement to better goals. It could also be claimed that any group that is large enough will contain at least some good people (as a group will also contain bad people). For example, people often point to General Robert E. Lee as a good person serving an evil cause.

Given these considerations, it does seem possible that there is at least one good person in the alt-right and hence Trump could be right in the strict logical sense of there being some (at least one) good people in the group. But, Trump’s purpose is almost certainly not to make a claim that is trivial in its possible truth. Rather, he seems to be engaged in another false equivalence, that the alt-right and their opponents are morally equivalent because both groups have some good people. Given the evil of the alt-right’s views (which are fundamentally opposed to the expressed values of the United States), saying that both sides are morally the same is obviously to claim what is false. The alt-right is the worse side and objectively so.

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  1. WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 10:23 am

    Hmm…two posts in two days on Turmp’s white nationalists. No word on Bernie’s snipers or even Mike’s BLM cop killers. Hands up, don’t shoot, my ass.

    This is so much crap. DH, TJ, Coffee, Magus, why do you take Mike’s posts in such good faith in spite of all evidence to the contrary? I am honestly curious about this. It’s absurd.

    • ronster12012 said, on August 16, 2017 at 11:14 am

      Michael’s lack of objectivity is amusing. Perhaps philosophy is just a sophisticated way of hiding one’s biases?

      • DH said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:32 pm

        I am not amused. Michael’s attitude towards this is dangerous to our way of life. Both sides ARE to blame – all you need to do is run down the list of eyewitnesses to see that amid the partisan rancor, there are those on the left who say the left incited the violence, and those on the right who say the right did. Taken as a whole, it is clear that pockets of violence erupted in isolated areas – fistfights, projectile throwing, pushing, shoving. The obvious conclusion, backed up by witness after witness, is that the first punches were thrown by individuals on both sides. Both sides agree on one point, however, and that is that the police – whose job it was to keep the factions separate and allow the protest to take place, did not do their jobs. Were they afraid, or did they, because of some misplaced ideology, want the violence to happen?

        Group A exercised their Constitutional right to free speech. They went and obtained a permit for a public demonstration, and were promised access to the specified area for this demonstration. By law, as pointed out by TJB, they had a reasonable expectation of protection by the police – as it is a federal crime to interfere with this lawful act. It does not matter – it CANNOT matter what the content of the speech is. This is the United States, where the right to speak is more important than what is being said. At least it used to be.

        Group B set out to prevent Group A from assembling, armed with weapons, clubs, paint-filled balloons and spray cans. They blocked Group A from accessing their prescribed area. The police did nothing. In some areas, Group A responded with violence. In other areas, Group B began the violence.

        This has nothing to do with what you believe or with whom you side. Nothing at all. What if Group A were Jews? Muslims? Christians? African Americans? LGBT protesters? The details do not matter – Constitutional rights belong to every citizen of this country.

        I would say to Mike that HE, and the rest of the left, are the real danger, and yes, the real Nazis. Why? Because they wish to pull the Federal Government down on their side of a constitutional issue, and deny rights to those with whom they disagree. They have justified the use of violence against them, simply because, in their eyes, they are “evil”. They believe that the President of the United States, rather than being the defender of the freedoms expressed in the Constitution for EVERY ONE OF US, should pick an ideological side and condemn the others.

        That is exactly what the Nazis did. They were ideologically opposed to a group of people based on their beliefs, and set out to ban them from their rights as citizens – ultimately depriving them of their rights. The same words were used – the Jews were “evil”, “immoral”.

        The same is true of the religious divisions in Iraq, when the Ba’ath party, ideologically opposed to the Kurds, sought to put them down, make them second-class citizens, and ultimately use Mustard and Sarin gas on them.

        It happened to the Anabaptists in Switzerland after the 30 years’ war – driven out of their country because they were “evil” in the eyes of the Catholics.

        To say that the alt-left was justified in using violence against the alt-right because the alt-right is “evil”, and to criticize the President for not agreeing with you, is a step toward dictatorship and fascism.

        I will say it again – inclusion is inclusion – it is not selective. Tolerance is tolerance – that is not selective either. Once you say it’s OK to exclude a group from your accepted circle of friends, you have opened the gates and made that case that any exclusion is therefore OK. “Evil” and “Immoral” have nothing to do with this at all.

        • WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:49 pm

          Both sides agree on one point, however, and that is that the police – whose job it was to keep the factions separate and allow the protest to take place, did not do their jobs.

          Fascists and communists are expected to face each other. The time and date of this meeting are known. Hell, a permit for the meeting was filed by one party long ahead of time. Seems a responsible government would do a risk assessment of the situation and ensure that either the police have the resources necessary to deal with the situation. If not, this is why the National Guard available at the government’s discretion.

          Meanwhile, states across the nation have called out their respective National Guards to prepare for Monday’s total eclipse of the sun.

          • TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 4:42 pm

            Sorry–couldn’t resist.

          • magus71 said, on August 16, 2017 at 5:39 pm

            That would be the case unless said state’s governor had declared his state a center of resistance to Trump. It doesn’t take much conspiracy theorizing given CNN’s past shenanigans to conceive of this possibility.

            City officials receive request for permit from right wing group.
            City contacts governor, a known left-winger to discuss “problem”
            City officials let media aka CNN et al in on the future rally
            City and State officials, knowing violence will likely ensue, intentionally remove police from the premise. (We know the police were given a stand down order).
            Now the media has violence to spin in any manner it wants. And we know which way it wants.
            It’s win/win for McAuliffe (who’s shown himself very dishonest in post event remarks) and the media.

    • CoffeeTime said, on August 17, 2017 at 6:27 pm

      WTP: “why do you take Mike’s posts in such good faith in spite of all evidence to the contrary?”

      The only effective way to answer a point is as if it is made in good faith, as well as assuming the best interpretation of it. Principle of Charity, and all that. You don’t have to feel charitable about it, but when you simply dismiss or ridicule, you are putting up no counter-argument, and subject to being dismissed in turn.

      So my guideline in discussion, especially on the Internet, is to play it straight or stay out of the game.

      Anyway, I don’t believe Mike is posting in bad faith. I think he feels what he says. I see people talk about Trump Derangement Syndrome, and I’ve seen Noble Cause Corruption. We humans are very bad at compensating for our own biases.

      Anyway, on various other points in the post.

      The core issue I would make here is that neither “sides” nor “groups” bear guilt or responsibility. That is a category error. Individual people can be guilty. Individual people can be responsible. Assigning guilt to “sides” and “groups”, especially ill-defined ones, is just a lazy shortcut. This is a result of our intellectual limitations. Looking at the videos, there were clearly some sub-groups who were acting with some co-ordination as part of the protestors, and some acting with some co-ordination as part of the counter-protestors. It is also clear that there were many who favoured one group or the other but not taking an active role, and many who did little but wave their phones around.

      There can be no doubt that there were individuals on both sides who did blameworthy things. It’s right there on video. So “there is blame on both sides” is entirely justified, though I’d prefer the more accurate “people among and supporting both the protestors and the counter-protestors did blameworthy things.”

      The car that ploughed into the crowd was indeed fiirst attacked by what I presume was a counter-protestor for no apparent reason before it swerved, braked, and accelerated. That, also, is on video. That is blameworthy. The very act by the counter-protestors of showing up without getting their own permit was blameworthy. Frankly, I regard taking assault weapons, clubs, bats to a protest as blameworthy in itself, and that was done by people supporting both sides.

      Were there “good people” on both sides? I can’t judge people I don’t know. I am sure people on both sides believed that what they were doing was good, though. I think that what Mike did with these two articles was bad. Does that make him “not a good person”?

      As for the bar-room brawl analogy, it is entirely clear that some Antifa people, at least, showed up ready to rumble. Bats and assault rifles make better weapons than beer bottles. The protestors were there to meet, march, speak. Does anyone doubt that if not for the violence of the illegal counter-protest, the day would have passed quietly enough?

      As for the party analogy, it is equally clear that the counter-protestors were breaking the law. In terms of that analogy, they were trespassing.

      Mike’s entire case seems to me to rest on the assertion that the protestors were “endorsing morally wicked views that should be countered.” I agree. But for someone who believes that, the appropriate means to counter is with more speech, not hooded thugs with bats.

      To be fair to both sides, it seems to me, from such accounts as I have seen, that apart from a few small scuffles, there was no major trouble until the police actually forced the protestors out of their assigned area right into the counter-protestors illegally blocking the street beside the park. As I read about that day, there is much I don’t understand, but that most of all. Why would the authorities, instead of allowing the groups to stay separate, actually force them together into a street with no buffer and no police presence?

      In terms of the actual events of the day, no reasonable person can say that either side contained no blameworthy people. Anyone who blames one “side” without blaming the other is engaging in dishonesty.

      • DH said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:43 pm

        This is a very reasonable, intelligent post. Kudos to you.

        I would add to it that it is simply not the job of the POTUS to make moral judgments about the content of anyone’s expression of ideas, as the Left wants Trump to do. We, as citizens, can condemn to whatever degree we want those factions with whom we disagree, but it is the President’s job, as the primary defender of the Constitution, to ensure that protected rights are not violated. You are correct, that the counter-protesters were breaking the law, but it was no mere misdemeanor. They were breaking a law that protects one of the most fundamental defining laws of this country. It is frightening to imagine the consequences resulting from the acceptance of that kind of activity, simply because of “ideological differences”.

        One might surmise that the term “ideological differences” is not strong enough – that the alt-right is evil, wicked, immoral, malevolent … and to that I would say that the content is entirely irrelevant. This is a much bigger issue, and it goes to our way of life.

        I’d like to point out the context of my opinion, if you would indulge me. My grandparents escaped from Russia in 1904, amid horrific pogroms committed against Jews at that time. I have heard first-hand stories of families – relatives of mine, who were beaten to death for their “ideological differences” (religion) while the police looked the other way. Family members who did not escape with my grandparents were never heard from again – those who survived to the next generation were exterminated by the Nazis.

        My emotional response to any kind of declaration of “supremacy” based on skin color, or any kind of government support of the condemnation of any idea, belief, ideology, or religion is visceral and deep. Not only have I heard the stories first hand from my own family members who escaped, but I conducted a series of video interviews with Jews during the Holocaust, during the process of which we had to take many breaks to get past the sobbing on the part of the interviewees and the crew (these interviews are now part of the collection of the Library of Congress, by the way). I’m certain that you can imagine the level of blind hatred I have for the perpetrators of this kind of oppression. I do not watch documentaries on this subject – I simply cannot get through them. The fact that the White Supremacists and Neo-Nazis even exist in this country is appalling to me – and no level of violence or revenge is off the table in my own imagination.

        And yet – I recognize the value of the freedoms we treasure in this country, and know that they are far more important than ANY of that. Words, as you say, should be countered with words, and I fundamentally believe that the words we use to express our freedoms and the philosophical underpinnings thereof are plenty strong enough to quell any ideological uprising.

        So, despite my own history, my anger, my hatred, my elevated blood pressure – I believe that a measured, unifying response by the POTUS is exactly what is needed. There IS blame on both sides, but this is not the time for blame. There IS evil in the message of the White Supremacists, but this is not the time to condemn that evil. The violence is what should not be tolerated here, and yet the tolerance of the violence was, by most accounts, exactly what was supported by the State. The message is irrelevant – and the freedom to express that message is paramount, no matter how much we might hate it.

        Are any of you old enough to remember when the “Evil Which Must Be Countered” in this country was Communism? Does anyone remember those dark days when Joe McCarthy, at the head of the HUAC, led the country to the ruination of innocent people’s lives based on some state-sponsored desire to eliminate a moral stain upon our great land? How is this any different – except for the details, and that those details are more relevant to our generation?

        I, too, criticize Trump’s response to this issue. I think he should stand up in front of the country and remind us of our freedoms, remind us of how the desire to have our government crush the White Supremacists is a far greater evil than anything they can possibly say, and that to do so would be a major blow to our Constitution, our country, and our freedom.

        • CoffeeTime said, on August 17, 2017 at 10:51 pm

          Thank you, DH, for that grounding.

          I too would like to see an American President remind the people how essential free speech is, and how important it is to defend it.

          • WTP said, on August 18, 2017 at 11:53 am

            Thought I’d throw in for reference PDT’s statement on Charlottesville. I cut out the opening stuff in the second one about economic issues. Emphasis is mine, of course:

            First speech:
            Thank you very much. As you know, this was a small press conference, but a very important one. And it was scheduled to talk about the great things that we’re doing with the secretary on the veterans administration. And we will talk about that very much so in a little while. But I thought I should put out a comment as to what’s going on in Charlottesville. So, again, I want to thank everybody for being here, in particular I want to thank our incredible veterans. And thank you, fellas. Let me shake your hand.

            They’re great people. Great people. But we’re closely following the terrible events unfolding in Charlottesville, Virginia. We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides. It’s been going on for a long time in our country. Not Donald Trump, not Barack Obama, this has been going on for a long, long time. It has no place in America. What is vital now is a swift restoration of law and order and the protection of innocent lives. No citizen should ever fear for their safety and security in our society. And no child should ever be afraid to go outside and play or be with their parents and have a good time.

            I just got off the phone with the governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, and we agree that the hate and the division must stop, and must stop right now. We have to come together as Americans with love for our nation and true affection– really, I say this so strongly, true affection for each other. Our country is doing very well in so many ways. We have record — just absolute record employment. We have unemployment the lowest it’s been in almost 17 years. We have companies pouring into our country, Foxconn and car companies and so many others. They’re coming back to our country. We’re renegotiating trade deals to make them great for our country and great for the American worker.

            We have so many incredible things happening in our country, so when I watch Charlottesville, to me it’s very, very sad. I want to salute the great work of the state and local police in Virginia. Incredible people. Law enforcement, incredible people. And also the National Guard. They’ve really been working smart and working hard. They’ve been doing a terrific job. Federal authorities are also providing tremendous support to the governor. He thanked me for that. And we are here to provide whatever other assistance is needed. We are ready, willing and able. Above all else, we must remember this truth: No matter our color, creed, religion or political party, we are all Americans first. We love our country. We love our god.

            We love our flag. We’re proud of our country. We’re proud of who we are, so we want to get the situation straightened out in Charlottesville, and we want to study it. And we want to see what we’re doing wrong as a country where things like this can happen. My administration is restoring the sacred bonds of loyalty between this nation and its citizens, but our citizens must also restore the bonds of trust and loyalty between one another. We must love each other, respect each other and cherish our history and our future together. So important. We have to respect each other. Ideally, we have to love each other.

            ———————–

            Second speech:
            …We will be discussing economic issues in greater detail later this afternoon, but based on the events that took place over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, I would like to provide the nation with an update on the ongoing federal response to the horrific attack and violence that was witnessed by everyone. I just met with FBI director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The Department of Justice has opened a civil-rights investigation into the deadly car attack that killed one innocent American and wounded 20 others. To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held accountable. Justice will be delivered.

            As I said on Saturday, we condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of bigotry, hatred, and violence. It has no place in America. And as I have said many times before, no matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws; we all salute the same great flag; and we are all made by the same almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry, and violence. We must discover the bonds of love and loyalty that bring us together as Americans. Racism is evil, and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans. We are a nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal. We are equal in the eyes of our creator, we are equal under the law, and we are equal under our constitution. Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America.

            Two days ago, a young American woman, Heather Heyer, was tragically killed. Her death fills us with grief and we send her family our thoughts, our prayers, and our love. We also mourn the two Virginia state troopers who died in service to their community, their commonwealth, and their country. Troopers H. Jay Cullen and Berke Bates exemplify the very best of America, and our hearts go out to their families, their friends, and every member of American law enforcement. These three fallen Americans embody the goodness and decency of our nation. In times such as these, America has always shown its true character, responding to hate with love, division with unity, and violence with an unwavering resolve for justice. As a candidate, I promised to restore law and order to our country, and our federal law-enforcement agencies are following through on that pledge. We will spare no resource in fighting so that every American child can grow up free from violence and fear. We will defend and protect the sacred rights of all Americans, and we will work together so that every citizen in this blessed land is free to follow their dreams in their hearts and to express the love and joy in their souls.
            Thank you. God bless you, and God bless America.

      • WTP said, on August 18, 2017 at 11:36 am

        CT,
        Thank you for your response. Unfortunately I don’t have the time to get into too much detail. But some points from my perspective.

        is as if it is made in good faith, as well as assuming the best interpretation of it

        In most cases I would agree. That is an assumption, is it not? Is there not some point, after many interactions in which a person fails to address salient points or on the rare occasions he does so, it is in repeatedly in a disingenuous manner, where one loses this faith? Does one not have a philosophical responsibility to the issue at hand to stop being so charitable? I submit that at some point the issue at hand becomes subservient to a larger issue. A reasonable expectation of a responsible exchange of ideas. And shouldn’t one expect something close to a reasonable consideration in return? At what point does one become an enabler?

        Look, I have worked with people in desperate, though mostly near-desperate straits. My experience, over many years, has taught me the folly of being too forgiving. I always start out as open and accepting as possible. But for any issue between two parties to be addresses and/or resolved requires both parties to maintain a good faith environment. A free and open society requires this.

        is to play it straight or stay out of the game.

        Not sure to whom “play it straight” refers. In general, I would not waste my time with any of this were it not directly to the point of many, many of the issues we are seeing today in our youth and those of much earlier generations. Our tax dollars go to support these absurdities. They should be addressed. While this point may seem rather petty and I used to believe so. However, after much thinking about it many years ago, I came to a different conclusion. It’s hard to explain and I understand where you’re coming from on some of this. But play time is over. As I told Magus several years ago, the wars we are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. are irrelevant leaf-issues to the root ideological battle that needs to be worked out here.

        I don’t believe Mike is posting in bad faith
        Stick around for ten years. You may change your mind. TJ has started to.

        Agree very much with the rest of your post in reference to the subject at hand.

        • CoffeeTime said, on August 18, 2017 at 3:23 pm

          WTP, I apologise if it seemed like I was aiming a criticism at someone. I wasn’t. By “play it straight” I simply mean avoiding using tactics like sarcasm, turning it into a joke, memeing, diverting, or avoiding the point because of a presumed failure of the person making it.

          There is no doubt that some people sometimes post arguments “in bad faith” – by which I mean they don’t believe them, or don’t support them, or are lying about them. And sometimes I want to call them out about that. Rarely, calling them out can be useful, if I have solid evidence. Generally, though, that doesn’t work, especially on the net. I find, therefore, it is simply not an effective thing to do.

          I think Mike has lost the plot in his last couple of posts, but I don’t doubt that he believes what he says, and is therefore arguing in good faith. But even if I believed otherwise, I feel I would do no good by arguing that rather than addressing his points head on.

          • WTP said, on August 18, 2017 at 3:56 pm

            Understand. I may be misusing the term “bad faith”, though I believe it has adopted as a second meaning which I am using (see argument on reddit at https://www.reddit.com/r/AgainstGamerGate/comments/2vsqrc/so_lets_try_this_again_what_is_a_bad_faith/). When I say “bad faith” I don’t mean double-minded, I mean an argument by someone who is invested in winning an argument above all else, regardless of a pursuit of truth or knowledge. In a sense it is similar in that here with Mike he is pretending to be philosophical, but as for the ends he is seeking to reach via argument itself, I do believe he is “playing is straight”. I find myself referencing the Constanza defense here a good bit. “Jerry, just remember. It’s not a lie…if you believe it.”

            If someone is arguing something that they don’t believe, or don’t support, or are lying about, I don’t really care too much. I’m more concerned with the argument itself than the person making it. As either you or DH stated recently, I don’t believe Mike will change his mind on anything and thus I don’t come here for that purpose.
            Which is often a hard thing to get across to most people. I’m looking for another perspective on what I have seen or what I believe. Sometimes you can get that from people with whom you (mostly) agree. By flushing out your own argument you either understand it better or see flaws in it as well.

  2. ronster12012 said, on August 16, 2017 at 11:11 am

    Michael

    ……………………………………………………………………………….
    “They are, after all, endorsing morally wicked views that should be countered.”
    ………………………………………………………………………………..
    Bullshit. It’s only morally wicked in your mind. Counter it with reason if you can.

    …………………………………………………………………………………………
    “There is, of course, also the obvious fact that it was a member of the alt-right that is alleged to have driven a car into the crowd, killing one person and injuring others. As such, if any blame is to be placed on a side, it is to be placed on the alt-right.”
    …………………………………………………………………………………………….
    You don’t actually know the circumstances of the car being driven into the crowd. I have seen reports that it was attacked prior to the incident. Till you can show that it was driven deliberately into the crowd with intent to kill, then it would be better if you did not use the word murder.

    You said above that not all alt-right could be blamed for that yet you just did.

    ……………………………………………………………………………………………….
    “However, it could be argued that the rhetoric and ideology of the alt-right inherently instigates and urges violence and evil behavior. If so, then all members who accept the ideology of the alt-right are accountable for being part of a group that is dedicated to doing evil. I now turn to Trump’s second claim.”
    ………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    Sounds like you don’t know what you are talking about if you say that the alt-right is one ideology. It isn’t. There are many strands with varying amounts of overlap. They range from actual NatSoc/Fascists all the way to Traditionalists to edgy Conservatives.
    One thing that they probably all share is race realism. That simply recognises that all people are racist(if defined in the terms that white people are regularly accused of being racist for) and that it is as legitimate for whites to organise in their own interests as it is for blacks, hispanics or jews to organise in their own interests. Who can argue with that?

  3. TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 11:27 am

    Mike, it is easy to see that both sides are at fault. The protesters applied for a permit and showed up with the desire to exercise their first amendment rights. The counter-protestors had no permit and showed up with the goal of preventing the protesters from exercising their first amendment rights. Preventing someone from exercising a constitutional right is a crime.

    It is baffling to see how you fail to see this.

    Even white supremacists have first amendment rights.

  4. TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    18 U.S. Code § 241 – Conspiracy against rights

    If two or more persons conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States, or because of his having so exercised the same; or

    If two or more persons go in disguise on the highway, or on the premises of another, with intent to prevent or hinder his free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege so secured—

    They shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, they shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.
    (June 25, 1948, ch. 645, 62 Stat. 696; Pub. L. 90–284, title I, § 103(a), Apr. 11, 1968, 82 Stat. 75; Pub. L. 100–690, title VII, § 7018(a), (b)(1), Nov. 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 4396; Pub. L. 103–322, title VI, § 60006(a), title XXXII, §§ 320103(a), 320201(a), title XXXIII, § 330016(1)(L), Sept. 13, 1994, 108 Stat. 1970, 2109, 2113, 2147; Pub. L. 104–294, title VI, §§ 604(b)(14)(A), 607(a), Oct. 11, 1996, 110 Stat. 3507, 3511.)

    • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:34 am

      What do you think the chances are of anyone actually being charged (or even seriously investigated) over the attempt to deprive people of their rights? I’d say slim to none, but you may know better. This leads to another issue, that of selective application of the law. We(as in you in the US and me in Oz) are drowning in laws but are very selectively applied. This is in addition to those at the top being virtually immune to laws that are regularly applied against the plebs.

      • magus71 said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:45 am

        Next to zero. Which side runs The Matrix?

        • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:57 am

          So the enemy is not so much the street level thugs/useful idiots but the higher level leftists, the result of the ‘long march through the institutions’, who enable and protect them. I hope that people are compiling lists for the day of the rope.

          • WTP said, on August 17, 2017 at 11:09 am

            Bingo.

            The Progressives are actually quite canny, in that they have the patience to transform a society little by little instead of in one convulsion, as the revolutionaries wanted.

            Every leftward nudge, every leftward push, has been small enough that it never constitutes a Hill To Die On for the conservatives. It’s easy to characterize your opponents as prissy hard-noses over a LITTLE change to this or that, in the name of easing the pain of someone who’s heretofore been put-upon.

            You’re raising a big stink about THIS? What’s wrong with you? Lighten UP already! It’s no big deal!

            Which, this is how the Grand Canyon got to be so big (well, ok, there were probably some convulsions here and there). Do note that after the river washes away the sand, you can’t restore it to a stony condition.

            The 2nd law of thermodynamics works only one way.

            http://davidthompson.typepad.com/davidthompson/2017/02/dont-tell-your-parents.html?cid=6a00d83451675669e201bb097dda69970d#comment-6a00d83451675669e201bb097dda69970d

            • WTP said, on August 17, 2017 at 1:07 pm

              Hmm….this comment not showing up in the sidebar. Long url, perhaps? No biggie, just curious if this one will goose it out…

      • magus71 said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:57 am

        It’s likely the whole thing was a setup. Left sends in Agent provocateurs and notifies media.

        • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:05 am

          I read that a Soros backed organization was offering protesting/rioting work on Craigslist at $25/hr.

  5. TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 12:18 pm

    Mike, the problem is that too many on the left think it is OK to silence speech of which they do not approve.

    I’m afraid you are falling into this same dark pit.

  6. TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    Here is an example.

    • TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 12:34 pm

      These are your allies, Mike.

      • magus71 said, on August 16, 2017 at 1:53 pm

        Come on TJ, it’s 2017. If we cuck ourselves we win.

        • TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 2:13 pm

          I am just sad to see Mike join the Antifa types.

          • magus71 said, on August 16, 2017 at 2:40 pm

            i’m convinced most Leftists don’t really know the composition of the Left. They often just drift toward pleasant sounding ideas. Like punch a Nazi.

          • WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:36 pm

            You’re just realizing this now?

            • WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:36 pm

              That was reply to TJ not Magus…just to be clear…

  7. TJB said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    Did you notice how Mike wrote about hating the people holding the wrong ideas? He is unable to separate the people from the ideology.

    This is why those who criticize Islamic theology are often accused of hating Muslims. Apparently a lot of people are unable to separate hating ideology vs. hating people.

    • WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:40 pm

      Yet they seem to have no problem separating the hate certain Muslims have from Islamic theology. No connection there whatsoever. Why it’s almost as if philosophy had absolutely nothing to do with the position. Like it’s all some form of justification of what one already feels rather than an objective analysis of a given situation. There’s a word for that…

    • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 7:42 am

      The left always uses the trick of just adding the word ‘hater’ or ‘phobe’ to their enemies views. It is effective because most people are afraid of being called names. The only defence is “yeah, and so what?”.

  8. magus71 said, on August 16, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    I respect little of the thinking from the Left. Remember this is a body of people that essentially fears Quakers more than it does Islamic fundamentalists. There is no Neo-nazi threat to America. Nazism is anti-American (just as egalitarianism is). The true threat is the erosion of the Constitution and the lack of respect by many of the ideas contained therein.

    Bottom line: You can’t throw bricks or run over people because they think differently. But let’s do a statistical analysis on where the majority of political violence comes from. Start your research at Berkeley. Work your way out from there.

    All of this hyperventilating is mostly a fiction created by the media anyway. You know, the Nazi/Hitler/ Russian/ Racist/ Misogynist industrial complex.

    They laughably accused Mitt-Fricken-Romney of the same.

  9. magus71 said, on August 16, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    McAuliffe (former chair of the DNC) needs to go. Read and cringe.

    https://reason.com/blog/2017/08/16/virginia-state-police-say-they-didnt-fin

  10. ajmacdonaldjr said, on August 16, 2017 at 8:47 pm

  11. WTP said, on August 16, 2017 at 9:23 pm

    Some more of Mike’s Minions. What they teach kids in schools these days. smh…

    http://economiccollapsenews.com/2017/03/31/protesters-give-middle-finger-to-victims-of-communisms/

  12. ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:01 am

    Anyone taking bets as to how long it will be before calls to expunge Washington and Jefferson( amongst others) from the history books ‘because of slavery’, as well as remove their statues and rename everything that bears their name? I’d give it a couple of years at the most.

  13. magus71 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:03 am

    Let’s also remember that Antifa is on the side that can’t even bear to hear Charles Murray speak. Murray pretty much holds my beliefs to a T. To them, Murray is a racist because he says welfare hurt black families and that different races have different IQs.

    • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:10 am

      “Murray is a racist because he says welfare hurt black families and that different races have different IQs.” He’s just stating the obvious. Many on the left seem to think that race is just a ‘social construct’ but ‘gender equality’ is real ffs lol

      • magus71 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:12 am

        My favorite is “race doesn’t exist!” *checks African American block on federal job application*

        • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:41 am

          Perhaps you didn’t get the memo, race now exists and it is now racist to deny that others(only minorities in first world countries) are a different race, ie. blacks or hispanics etc. It is hard to keep up with all the changes…from race is just a social construct to you are a damn racist if you deny that I am from a different race….Honestly, this shit cannot go on much longer without something breaking.

      • DH said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:35 am

        Charles Murray “endorses morally wicked views that should be countered.” The same is true of “Trump Supporters”

        Since they show up to express these morally wicked views, violence against them is not only justified, but it is their fault.

        I don’t see why this is so hard to understand. The government’s obligation is to make sure that the country’s moral compass is calibrated correctly, and to take steps to put down those who adhere to a different morality, a different God, a different belief system.

        The Constitution is really just a piece of paper – and the First Amendment is just as flawed as the Second, and should be changed to adapt to our times.

        By the same token, the 5th Amendment is also flawed, because Congress does not act fast enough, or at all. Therefore, if Congress will not act, the President should.

        I think that an Executive Order, modifying the First Amendment, is way past due. Some speech, some opinions, just should not be tolerated, and we need the government on our side to get rid of it. If these White Supremacists had been jailed for expressing their views in the first place, this whole riot would not have happened.

        • ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:44 am

          Yes it is obviously their fault that they had the permit for the demo and were attacked by those that had no permit for a counterdemo. While the police stood by…

  14. ronster12012 said, on August 17, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Michael

    What is your attitude to black separatists? Are they OK because they are black? Or would you publicly denounce them? actually I don’t expect you to denounce them as it would probably cost you your job if you applied rules consistently. Here’s a chart with the various so-called ‘hate groups’ put together by the alleged SPLC(for what that’s worth) https://www.statista.com/chart/10673/americas-active-hate-groups/ Seems like there are 193 active black separatist hate groups, what do you think about that?


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