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Saturday, August 19, 2017

Joint Chiefs Denounce Racism After Trump's Comments : The Two-Way : NPR





"Members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff — high-ranking military officials who advise the president — appeared to distance themselves from President Trump by publicly condemning racism in the aftermath of Trump's comments about the attack in Charlottesville.



Trump has blamed "both sides" for the violence.



Five of the country's top uniformed leaders — of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and National Guard — have all sent tweets critical of "racism," "hatred" and "extremism," after a man who reportedly expressed admiration for Nazism allegedly drove a car into a crowd of people protesting against white supremacy Saturday. One woman, Heather Heyer, was killed, and 19 other people were injured.



The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Joe Dunford, said on Thursday that he hadn't commented yet because he left over the weekend for a trip to South Korea, Japan, and China.



"I can absolutely and unambiguously tell you there is no place — no place — for racism and bigotry in the U.S. military or in the United States as a whole," Dunford told reporters in Beijing Thursday.



As for his colleagues who lead America's military, Dunford said, "They were speaking directly to the force and to the American people: to the force to make clear that that kind of racism and bigotry is not going to stand inside the force. And to the American people, to remind them of the values for which we stand in the U.S. military, which are reflective of the values of the United States."



Since it was officially integrated in 1948, the U.S. military has often been perceived as being more advanced than the rest of American society when it comes to racial inclusion."



Joint Chiefs Denounce Racism After Trump's Comments : The Two-Way : NPR

The Test of Nazism That Trump Failed - The New York Times





“No. 1, I am the least anti-Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. No. 2, racism, the least racist person.” So the president said at a news conference in February. These words left me uneasy. A moment ago, as I was looking at photographs of young men in Charlottesville, Va., who were from my home state, Ohio, and thinking about the message “Heil Hitler” on the T-shirt that one wore, it dawned on me why.



I spent years studying the testimonies of Jewish survivors of the Holocaust and the recollections of their rescuers. When the rescuers were asked why they did what they did, they usually avoided the question. If they ventured a reply, it was simply to say that they did what anyone would have done. Historians who read sources develop intuitions about the material. The intuition I developed was that people who bragged about rescuing Jews had generally not done so; they were, in fact, more likely to be anti-Semites and racists. Rescuers almost never boast.



I write these lines in Poland, where the Holocaust is present in every absence, in a house where the Polish Nobel Prize-winning poet Czeslaw Milosz spent his summers when he was the same age as the young men I see in those photographs. In 1943 in Warsaw, he watched as the wind that blew the ash over the wall of the burning ghetto caught the skirts of girls riding a carousel. He noticed how people reached out to catch bits of ash floating through the air like “dark kites.”



I found myself thinking also of another Polish Nobel Prize-winning poet, Wislawa Szymborska. She memorably described a seemingly normal woman who was caught up in her daily cares but, when the moment arrived, ran headlong into a burning building to save children who were not her own.



“We know ourselves,” Ms. Szymborska wrote, “only insofar as we have been tested.”



Until we have been tested, there is no sense in boasting of our goodness; afterward, there is no need. After Charlottesville, President Trump faced an easy test, and failed. When presented with an obvious opportunity to condemn the evil that was and is Nazism, he first waited, then equivocated, then read from a teleprompter, then relativized. He spoke of “very fine people on both sides.”



The Nazi groups that marched in Charlottesville cannot be considered a “side.” When they carry torches, they imitate Nazi rituals. When they perform the call and response of “Trump! Hail” and “Victory! Hail!” they are translating Nazi performances that we know better in German: “Hitler! Heil!” and “Sieg! Heil!” In Charlottesville, American Nazis shouted “Sieg! Heil!” as they passed a synagogue.



When the supporters of the alt-right chant that “Jews will not replace us,” they recapitulate the Nazi idea of a world Jewry that stifles the master race and must therefore be removed from the planet. When they shout “Blood and soil,” they repeat a Nazi slogan signifying that races will murder races for land without mercy and forever.



These views do not define a “side,” but rather a worldview in which the United States of America, with its Constitution and laws, and with its hard-won daily understandings of rights and responsibilities, would no longer exist.



Hitler and his henchmen strategically defined themselves, from the outset, as a “side,” as the defenders of the system against the other “side,” the left. Hitler came to power denouncing Communism, which then (unlike now) was a force in the world. In power, Hitler assimilated all opponents to the other “side” and had them sent to camps or killed. When Germany’s parliament, the Reichstag, burned, Hitler had already established in his rhetoric that the other “side” was violent, and he used the (false) claim that the other “side” had committed terrorism to bring the German republic to an end.



In the Europe of the interwar years, the growing sense that politics was defined by two “sides” came to consume the broad political center, where people can think for themselves and confront the tests of politics as responsible citizens. If everyone was on a “side,” then no one bore responsibility for society as a whole, and the center could not hold.



The president has failed when no failure can be innocent. He has provided American Nazis with three services, for which they have thanked him: He has normalized their ideology; he has excused their actions; and he has given them hope that he will blame his opponents the next time America is struck by terrorism.



A writer for The Daily Stormer (a website that takes its name from the most anti-Semitic newspaper of the Nazi period) called Charlottesville a “Beer Hall Putsch,” referring to an early attempt by Hitler to seize power. The writer’s meaning was that the events in Virginia were an early failure that promises later victory. American Nazis dream of another Reichstag fire, a moment of terror in which the president will show his true colors and his opposition can be crushed.



We might choose to forget these slogans and these events from the years before World War II, but American Nazis remember the history in their own way, and so does President Trump. The Confederate statues he admires are mostly artifacts of the early years of the 20th century, when Hitler admired the United States for its Jim Crow laws, when Mr. Trump’s father was arrested at a Klan rally, before America passed its test. The presidential slogan “America First” is a summons to an alternative America, one that might have been real, one that did not fight the Nazis, one that stayed home when the world was aflame, one that failed its test.



That America might yet become our country. Whether or not it does now depends upon us. We are being tested, and so we will come to know ourselves."



The Test of Nazism That Trump Failed - The New York Times

Friday, August 18, 2017

The Daily 202: Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America - The Washington Post




"THE BIG IDEA: Donald Trump often behaves, first and foremost, as if he is the president of the states and people who voted for him.



That’s at odds with the American tradition, and it’s problematic as a governing philosophy — especially in a moment of crisis. Trump’s initially tone-deaf response to Charlottesville underscores why.



Animated by grievance and congenitally disinclined to extend olive branches, Trump lashes out at his “enemies” — his 2020 reelection campaign even used that word in a commercial released on Sunday — while remaining reticent to explicitly call out his fans — no matter how odious, extreme or violent.



Channeling his inner-Richard Nixon, who kept an enemies list of his own, candidate Trump often claimed to speak for “a silent majority.” After failing to win the popular vote, President Trump has instead governed on behalf of an increasingly vocal but diminishing minority.



The president has held campaign-style rallies in places like West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee. Indeed, almost all his political travel has been to places he carried last November. He keeps stacks of 2016 electoral maps to hand out to people visiting the Oval Office so he can point out the sea of red. He speaks often about his “base,” preferring to preach to the choir rather than evangelize for his policies. “The Trump base is far bigger & stronger than ever before,” Trump wrote on Twitter last week.



-- Apparently the president sees “the Trump base” as distinct from the GOP base: “Trump's job approval rating in Gallup Daily tracking is at 34% for the three-day period from Friday through Sunday — by one point the lowest of his administration so far,” Frank Newport wrote yesterday. “Republicans' latest weekly approval rating of 79% was the lowest from his own partisans so far, dropping from the previous week's 82%. Democrats gave Trump a 7% job approval rating last week, while the reading for independents was at 29%. This is the first time independents' weekly approval rating for Trump has dropped below 30%.” In the latest Gallup polling, 46 percent of whites approve of Trump’s job performance. That’s the same share Barack Obama had at this point in 2009. But while only 15 percent of nonwhites support Trump, 73 percent backed Obama."



The Daily 202: Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America - The Washington Post

The Daily 202: Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America - The Washington Post




"THE BIG IDEA: Donald Trump often behaves, first and foremost, as if he is the president of the states and people who voted for him.



That’s at odds with the American tradition, and it’s problematic as a governing philosophy — especially in a moment of crisis. Trump’s initially tone-deaf response to Charlottesville underscores why.



Animated by grievance and congenitally disinclined to extend olive branches, Trump lashes out at his “enemies” — his 2020 reelection campaign even used that word in a commercial released on Sunday — while remaining reticent to explicitly call out his fans — no matter how odious, extreme or violent.



Channeling his inner-Richard Nixon, who kept an enemies list of his own, candidate Trump often claimed to speak for “a silent majority.” After failing to win the popular vote, President Trump has instead governed on behalf of an increasingly vocal but diminishing minority.



The president has held campaign-style rallies in places like West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee. Indeed, almost all his political travel has been to places he carried last November. He keeps stacks of 2016 electoral maps to hand out to people visiting the Oval Office so he can point out the sea of red. He speaks often about his “base,” preferring to preach to the choir rather than evangelize for his policies. “The Trump base is far bigger & stronger than ever before,” Trump wrote on Twitter last week.



-- Apparently the president sees “the Trump base” as distinct from the GOP base: “Trump's job approval rating in Gallup Daily tracking is at 34% for the three-day period from Friday through Sunday — by one point the lowest of his administration so far,” Frank Newport wrote yesterday. “Republicans' latest weekly approval rating of 79% was the lowest from his own partisans so far, dropping from the previous week's 82%. Democrats gave Trump a 7% job approval rating last week, while the reading for independents was at 29%. This is the first time independents' weekly approval rating for Trump has dropped below 30%.” In the latest Gallup polling, 46 percent of whites approve of Trump’s job performance. That’s the same share Barack Obama had at this point in 2009. But while only 15 percent of nonwhites support Trump, 73 percent backed Obama."



The Daily 202: Trump acts like the president of the Red States of America - The Washington Post

Explosive Story About Trump's Racism In The Eighties

Bill Moyers: Instead Of A 'Soul,' Donald Trump Has An 'Open Sore' | The ...

The Paradox of Tolerance


Joe: The President Is Narrowcasting | Morning Joe | MSNBC

These poll numbers validate what I have been saying about the inherently racist worldview of Trump voters. #TrumpMustGo