COMMENTARY - What happened to tolerance, decency and civilized discourse?

  
Via:  john-russell  •  5 months ago  •  23 comments

COMMENTARY - What happened to tolerance, decency and civilized discourse?
So, it's come to this: neo-Nazis get warm and fuzzy feelings when the President of the United States slanders non-white U.S. Congresswomen in blatantly racist language, tells them to get out, while his cheerleaders urge him to outright violence or chant "send her back!"

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


Throughout our history immigrants have been labeled: "German socialist," "Russian anarchist," "Polish vagabond," "Italian brigand," "English convict," "Irish pauper." Vermont's own Calvin Coolidge warned in the 1920s that the country was becoming "a dumping ground" and that "America must remain American."

The taunt "go back to where you came from" has long been understood as a rhetorical palimpsest for "immigrants not welcome." In short, it means, "we" hate "you." Given that history, it is easy for any lazy, bullying demagogue to rally his supporters by inciting latent anti-egalitarian hatreds. Trump's strategy is straight out of the playbook of Hitler, Stalin, and Joseph McCarthy.

"Go back" signage from every era attests to the racist sentiment coursing through our collective history: "Irish need not apply;" "We don't serve Mexicans;" "Japs keep moving." More recently, in 2017, former Senator Pennsylvania Rick Santorum joined in a standing ovation for Baptist minister Dennis Terry, who had said that those who don't believe that America "was founded as a Christian nation" ought to "get out! We don't worship Buddha, we don't worship Mohammad, we don't worship Allah!"

Following the President's recent tweets, Republican Senator Lindsay Graham doubled down by calling the four Congresswomen "communists." A few days later the president's spokeswoman, Kellyanne Conway, affirmed the president's position. "What the president is doing is, we are tired - sick and tired - of many people in this country," she said. "Forget these four. They represent a dark underbelly of people in this country…" The women to whom Conway refers represent fully reasonable and mainstream positions of tens of millions of Americans. Again, is impossible to understate the grotesqueness and danger of our nation's leaders trafficking in such corrosive discourse.

But it gets worse. The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi, white nationalist website, are celebrating Trump's turn toward outright racist xenophobia. "This is the WHITE NATIONALISM we elected him for," wrote Andrew Anglin, Daily Stormer founder. On GoyTalk, a right-wing podcast, the hosts celebrated the comments as a return to form on the part of Trump. "Trump's racist again! He won me over," one of the hosts said. To which a co-host said, "He'll win me over when he actually strangles her [Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez] on stage."

So, it's come to this: neo-Nazis get warm and fuzzy feelings when the President of the United States slanders non-white U.S. Congresswomen in blatantly racist language, tells them to get out, while his cheerleaders urge him to outright violence or chant "send her back!"

The dark truth is that the opinions expressed in this letter could get me branded an enemy of the people or "un-American" by the President of our country, simply because I disagree with him. Persons of color, Muslims, immigrants, LGBTQ citizens, "communists," "socialists," "liberals," "radicals," the press, and now even members of congress - all of these groups are under direct attack by the President of the United States. Every American of every political persuasion should stand arm-in-arm against such attacks.

Our nation is brilliantly diverse- particularly with respect to race, religion, creed, sexual orientation, and ethnic or national background. It should go without saying but still must be said: Any president and his or her administration should always seek to honorably and respectfully represent all Americans, no matter which "side." In the meantime, we should be mindful of the words of James Baldwin: "I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually."

May we find our way back to the place where dissent is embraced and tolerance, decency, and civilized discourse reign.


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JohnRussell
1  seeder  JohnRussell    5 months ago
we should be mindful of the words of James Baldwin: "I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually."

May we find our way back to the place where dissent is embraced and tolerance, decency, and civilized discourse reign.
 
 
 
WallyW
1.1  WallyW  replied to  JohnRussell @1    5 months ago

The vast majority of hate, divisiveness, intolerance, and lack of decency, appears to originate from the left

 
 
 
JohnRussell
1.1.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  WallyW @1.1    5 months ago

Trump's mistake, in this particular case (as opposed to his thousands of mistakes in other cases) was to suggest that American citizens should leave the country upon his direction. 

There is simply no reason why Trump shouldnt be the one to leave instead, or his wife Melania, who has been an American citizen less long than any of the four. 

 
 
 
r.t..b...
1.2  r.t..b...  replied to  JohnRussell @1    5 months ago
May we find our way back to the place where dissent is embraced and tolerance, decency, and civilized discourse reign.

We can agree and disagree on each and every subject, but that should never preclude the need for listening with respect. Hard to do in these most divisive of times and I'm guilty as any in posting a thought that would have been better left unsent. It can start here, folks...and can be as simple as typing out your thoughts, reading them as the recipient may take them, and just hitting delete. We have a lot in common...let civility be high on the list.  Peace...

 
 
 
JohnRussell
2  seeder  JohnRussell    5 months ago

The picture accompanying this article is of Brattleboro Vermont, the small town (11,000 pop) which the writer of the article comes from. 

There was no picture with the article in the Brattleboro Reformer newspaper. 

 
 
 
Heartland American
3  Heartland American    5 months ago

It is the secular progressive left that has shown a complete lack of comity and civility in discussions of differing opinions and belief.  Tolerance for a diversity of ideas be it in politics, religion, origins, climate change, or economics or social issues is nothing more than a sick joke.  Whether it’s violence and intimidation by the likes of Antifa or simple condescending arrogance from the limousine liberal in no coastal ivory towers or content control to censor ideas they disagree with via SPLC and others, the lack of tolerance for much of America by them is blatant.   

 
 
 
JohnRussell
3.1  seeder  JohnRussell  replied to  Heartland American @3    5 months ago
The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi, white nationalist website, are celebrating Trump's turn toward outright racist xenophobia. "This is the WHITE NATIONALISM we elected him for," wrote Andrew Anglin, Daily Stormer founder. On GoyTalk, a right-wing podcast, the hosts celebrated the comments as a return to form on the part of Trump. "Trump's racist again! He won me over," one of the hosts said. To which a co-host said, "He'll win me over when he actually strangles her [Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez] on stage."
 
 
 
Ronin2
3.1.1  Ronin2  replied to  JohnRussell @3.1    5 months ago

So Trump is a racist since some racists back him?

Using your logic.

Any Democrat being backed by the Black Panthers, Black Muslims, La Raza, BLM, or any other far left hate group is a racist as well.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
4  seeder  JohnRussell    5 months ago

Imagine that "the squad" was Nancy Pelosi, Bernard Nadler, Adam Schiff, and Eric Swalwell, four white US representatives who are anti Trump, instead of Cortez, Tlaib , Omar and Pressley, would Trump have dared utter something as stupid as telling them to go back where they came from? Of course not.  He said it about the four women of color because he knew it was a good signal to his base that it is ok for racism to be expressed in the Trump years. 

 
 
 
Ronin2
4.1  Ronin2  replied to  JohnRussell @4    5 months ago

Yes, yes he would.

This is Trump we are talking about who grounded the plane for Queen Nancy's tax payer paid for junket/photo op to Afghanistan. That was just to play tit for tat with her. She irks him enough and I guarantee he will have his followers shouting, "send her back".  Even if they are not sure where to send her back to.

As for Nadler, Schiff, and Swalwell. If Trump is the racist/Anti Semite that the left like to make him out to be they wouldn't be off limits either. In fact they would be at the top of his hit list for attacks.  I am pretty Nadler will be getting a dose from Trump once the Mueller hearings are over. That is if his followers and media don't beat him to it.

Trump is an asshole. Trump is crude, rude, and abrasive. Trump will do an say anything to rile up anyone. Trump will play the media like a fiddle. Trump is driving the left, who would have cheered him if only he had that all important D behind his name, absolutely insane.

But Trump and most of his followers are not racist. Please keep screaming they are racist as loud as possible. You are turning off independents like me even more than the Dems insane exploding clown car of candidates running ever further left.  I didn't vote for Trump the last time; but keep pushing you might change my mind for next time around. 

 
 
 
Sean Treacy
5  Sean Treacy    5 months ago

Love the "where's the tolerance" title descending into immediately calling Americans neo-Nazis.

It's perfectly encapsulates the cognitive dissonance of the progressive  left.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6  Sparty On    5 months ago

Hate tends to beget hate and groups like the "squad" do their share of hating.   Yeah, they are sanctimonious enough to believe what they're doing isn't hate but deserved pontification for those not of like mind.   They're all take and no give.

Most zealots in history have felt the same way.   Didn't make most of them righteous in the least.

This is about extremism on both sides.   Neither side has the high ground.

 
 
 
MUVA
7  MUVA    5 months ago

We know exactly when this started when Ronald Reagan was elected the left had to do something and the politics of personal destruction was born your welcome.

 
 
 
Heartland American
7.1  Heartland American  replied to  MUVA @7    5 months ago

Bingo.  I remember the off the deep end stuff directed at Reagan by the far left of those days. Ron Dellums and Henry Gonzalez and their 1 hour special order diatribes on C-SPAN were quite the rants. 

 
 
 
Jasper2529
8  Jasper2529    5 months ago
What Happened To Tolerance, Decency And Civilized Discourse?

I'm sure Hillary Clinton, "Reverends" Jeremiah Wright and Al Sharpton, Maxine Waters, Antifa, and The Squad are asking the same question. /sarc

 
 
 
MUVA
8.1  MUVA  replied to  Jasper2529 @8    5 months ago

They are the answer to the question  Al Sharpton is race baiter from way back.

 
 
 
Sunshine
8.1.1  Sunshine  replied to  MUVA @8.1    5 months ago
Al Sharpton is race baiter from way back.

The Ferguson riots where instigated by him, CNN, and MSNBC.  The 24 hour hate machines that are CNN and MSNBC lied about the shooting of Michael Brown and promoted the false Hands Up Don't Shoot narrative. 

Same thing they did to Trump with the Russian Hoax for two years...nothing but hate and lies daily.

The propaganda arms of the left is responsible for the decline of discourse.  

 
 
 
Heartland American
9  Heartland American    5 months ago

Me thinks John has abandoned this seed to us. 

 
 
 
Ed-NavDoc
9.1  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  Heartland American @9    5 months ago

Don't worry. As soon as he notices the comments on the seed are going against his personal political worldview, he will most likely lock it down. Seen it happen before on more than one occasion.

 
 
 
freepress
11  freepress    5 months ago

When the man who holds the highest office in the country spews the kind of rhetoric we all know is wrong, he is teaching our children that lying is great.

What else are our children learning besides embracing lies? Our children are learning to hate, they are learning to hate what one man hates based on his public display of his own bigotry.

America should be better than this, our people should be smart enough to see that. Vote, vote out the party that encourages and tolerates this from the top on down.

 
 
 
Sparty On
11.1  Sparty On  replied to  freepress @11    5 months ago
When the man who holds the highest office in the country spews the kind of rhetoric we all know is wrong,

Speak for yourself and the rest of the haters

he is teaching our children that lying is great.

Really?   Per one of the lefts hero's: "that depends on what the definition of "is" is.   Thank you Bubba for that gem .....

What else are our children learning besides embracing lies?

Were you as worried about the children when Bubba lied right to your face?

America should be better than this, our people should be smart enough to see that.

Most Americans are smarter than you give them credit for.   That's how Trump won in the first place.

 
 
 
Ed-NavDoc
11.1.1  Ed-NavDoc  replied to  Sparty On @11.1    5 months ago

Yep, the smart smart Americans refused to vote the"abuelita"...jrSmiley_82_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Sparty On
11.1.2  Sparty On  replied to  Ed-NavDoc @11.1.1    5 months ago

Yep, people just had enough of the Bush's and Clinton's.

Trump managed to take both out on that sentiment alone, more or less.

 
 
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