The shots had barely stopped ringing in El Paso and Dayton before Republican leaders took to the airwaves to command our mourning nation not to “politicize” the murder of 29 people and maiming of more than 50 others.
That’s not only absurd…it’s foolish. Irresponsible. Offensive.
There are no circumstances in which mass murder isn’t political, especially in our country, where a deep-pocketed gun lobby pressures politicians to make semi-automatic assault rifles as easy to buy as a candy bar.
But when someone publishes a white supremacist, anti-immigrant manifesto less than half an hour before massacring nearly two dozen people, you’d better damn well believe it’s political.
And when the murderer’s priorities and language echo those of the president of the United States, it’s our duty to confront the hate speech coming out of the Oval Office.
So, let me be as clear as possible: Donald Trump’s words and actions embolden white supremacist domestic terrorists.
His response to the shootings was not only inadequate, but shameful – a handful of tweets dashed off while he entertained guests at his New Jersey golf club.
And even those tweets fall pathetically short. The claim that “There are no reasons or excuses that will ever justify killing innocent people” means nothing from a man who’s spent years pumping up crowds by defining innocent people as “animals,” “thugs,” and “an infestation” – and who, by week’s end, will be back at it.
Blood is on the ground. People are dead. Families are mangled. Communities are mourning, and our president continues to encourage the perpetrators.
It doesn’t get any more political than that.