Political Rhetoric Does NOT Equal Political Violence
Over the last several days we have been reminded of a couple well-known points. First, mental health is alive, well, and seemingly growing within the United States of America. Secondly, politicians cannot help politicizing that which should not be politicized. And finally, political rhetoric does not have to be toned down but, in my opinion, it should be.
Cesar Sayoc was arrested by authorities and faces up to 48 years in prison for sending suspicious packages, later identified as containing potential explosive devices, to prominent Democrat officials and politicians. I am not going into the semantics as to what an explosive is, whether the device could have been detonated, or any of the really technical aspects of the crime. Why? Because none of that is relevant for the purpose of this article. It may matter in the court of law, but what I want to highlight is the fact that the left-wing is both misinformed and convinced that overheated rhetoric finds its origin in the election and inauguration of Donald J. Trump.
As a Canadian observer of American politics, one thing I notice about the Democrats is that policy, legislation, public discourse, and the general social demeanor of the base is typically at the mercy of the mentally ill. Consider gun legislation for a moment. In Chicago a person is shot every two minutes and fifty-one (2:51) seconds according to Heyjackass.com. So far in October alone 37 people have been shot and killed with 189 shot in total. In 2018 so far Chicago has just under 500 homicides with gunshots being the cause 86.1 percent of the time. And the crazy thing is that these numbers are good compared to the last two years! Do these horrifying statistics fuel the gun reform agenda for the left? Of course not! It's only when a mentally unstable kid shoots up a school with an assault rifle that Democrats call for the ban of all semi-automatic firearms. In a strange way, Democrats politically thrive off of mental illness.
There are critics of the bomb scare who look at the timing of the mid-terms and raise their eyebrows the same way they did for Justice Kavanaugh's sexual assault accuser. Is this right to do? Who cares? You can think whatever and however you want. However, I would implore the critics to remember that there are over 325 million people in America. It wouldn't be unrealistic to assume that they aren't all mentally stable. Mental illness is absolutely on the uprising. The majority of people I deal with as a police officer have a list of mental ailments. Depression, bi-polar, and schizophrenia, are only a few on the menu. This is neither here nor there but what a wonderful time to legalize a drug in Canada that has scientifically proven effects on the developing human brain. Mental illness for everyone! Hurray!
To my next point, politicians, in their simplest form, are opportunists. In a time of such drastic and incredible divide, occurrences, like this bomb threat, that would typically call for unified disdain and scorn, are now used as salt to rub into the wound of the opposition. The unadulterated hatred the left has for the sitting President has them desperate for evidence and justification to reinforce their position. Celebrities and the elites of society have loudly spoken about 'blowing up the White House.' They proudly depict themselves holding a mock decapitated head of the President. They state their desire to inflict physical violence towards the President and his family. James Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders supporter and anti-Trump activist, shot up a Congressional baseball game seriously injuring Congressmen Steve Scalise. Daniel Frisiello, the man who sent 5 envelopes filled with white powder to Donald Trump Jr.'s residence landed his wife, Vanessa Trump in the hospital.
Should each of the above listed occurrences of violence be blamed on Democrat leadership? No, the perpetrators involved are squarely responsible for these acts. However, when Maxine Waters and Cory Booker say that their constituents should harass and get into the face of Republican legislators and Hillary Clinton states that civility should be suspended until they are in power-- these statements are directly linked to the actions of their peons.
I stated earlier that political rhetoric does not need to be toned down, but it should. I say that because I staunchly defend the first amendment even at the cost of people's, and my own, feelings. Left-wingers seem to be under the belief that if people only said the right things, the world would be a better place. They seem to believe that if people thought the right things and held the right ideals, the world would be a utopia. This is the beginning of tyranny-- the fons et origo of fascism.
If we are going to unify, we should do it voluntarily and not under duress. Political violence is simply wrong, intolerable, and has no part in a democratic society. Instead of rebuking the President after he publicly and categorically condemns political violence, we should view his statement as a starting point for a common, unifying idea-- because party colors aside, we are all human.