Politics & Policy

If a Trump Supporter Had Shot Democratic Congressmen …

Senator Jeff Flake outside the scene of the shooting in Alexandria, Va., June 14, 2017. (Reuters photo: Mike Theiler)
Front-page news for weeks. So why do Republicans make nice and ignore the double standard?

What would have happened if a Trump supporter had shot Democratic congressmen?

The answer is obvious.

The New York Times, the rest of the left-wing media, and the Democratic party would have made the shootings the dominant issue in American life. It is not possible to understand the Left — and, therefore, the media and the current state of American life — without understanding how the Left uses and relies on hysteria. Hysteria is to the Left what oxygen is to biological life. 

From the moment Donald Trump was elected president, America has been drowning in left-wing hysteria, all fomented by the media and the Democratic party.

The charge of Russian collusion with the Trump campaign is hysteria. The claim that the president engaged in obstruction of justice is hysteria. The charge of Trump’s election unleashing hate and anti-Semitism, which dominated American media for months, was hysteria. As I have pointed out, in virtually every case of the 200 or so Jewish institutions that received a bomb threat, it was a troubled American Jewish teenager living in Israel who called in the threats. The other threats were called in by a black radical who sought to implicate his ex-girlfriend.

If Democrats had been shot by a Trump supporter, all you would be hearing and reading about is how much hate the Trump election has unleashed in America, how his election is threatening our democracy, and how Trump is unleashing fascism.

But it was a not a Trump supporter who attempted to murder Democratic congressmen; it was a Trump-hating leftist who attempted to murder Republican congressmen. And for that reason, what would have been the dominant issue in America today is already a non-issue. The shootings took place on Wednesday. On Friday, two days later, the only article on it appearing on the New York Times front page was about the “harmony” engulfing Democrats and Republicans in the wake of the shootings. By Saturday, there was not a single story about the shootings on the front page.

The “harmony” issue is worth noting. As sure as the sun rises in the East, had a Trump-supporting fanatic shot Democratic congressmen, the Democrats would not have said a word about the need for “harmony” or about the need to lower the temperature in American political discourse. On the contrary, they would have greatly raised the temperature of their already blistering rhetoric. They would have entirely attributed the shootings to Trump’s “hateful” rhetoric having permeated conservative and Republican America.

But it was a leftist who attempted to slaughter Republicans, so it was Republicans who had to respond. And they did so by calling for harmony and for lowering the temperature of political differences.

In other words, Republicans reacted with complete conciliation, whereas if a right-winger had attempted to murder Democrats, the Democrats and their media would have gone ballistic against the right.

Now, why is that?

Republicans have accepted the narrative following the shootings that there is some sort of moral equivalence between right-wing and left-wing hate.

One reason is that Republicans have accepted the narrative following the shootings that there is some sort of moral equivalence between right-wing and left-wing hate. That they have taken this path reinforces my belief that the great majority of Republicans and conservatives – whether in politics or in the media – do not appreciate how rotten the Left is (the Left, not traditional liberals). Many really believe that calls for “harmony” and “unity” with Democrats and the left are meaningful.

But the only reason Democrats talked about harmony for a few days after the shootings was that one of theirs did the shooting.

Even during the three-day “harmony” period, the Left was busy furthering the falsehood that there is quantitative and qualitative equivalence between right-wing and left-wing hate. As evidence, the New York Times editorialized:

Was this attack evidence of how vicious American politics has become? Probably. In 2011, Jared Lee Loughner opened fire in a supermarket parking lot, grievously wounding Representative Gabby Giffords and killing six people, including a 9-year-old girl. At the time, we and others were sharply critical of the heated political rhetoric on the right. Before the shooting, Sarah Palin’s political action committee circulated a map of targeted electoral districts that put Ms. Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized cross hairs.

A Republican putting crosshairs on a national map of vulnerable Democrat districts is the worst the Times could come up with. And that is apparently equivalent to all the hate directed at President Trump: calling opposition to him “resistance,” as if Democrats are the French Resistance and Trump a Nazi; Kathy Griffin showing a cartoon illustration of President Trump’s severed head with blood gushing out; Stephen Colbert saying on his TV show that President Trump’s mouth would make a good “c*** holster” for Russian president Vladimir Putin; and so much more unprecedented hate.

The difference between what has happened after these shootings and what would have happened had a right-winger shot Democratic Congressmen is, in a nutshell, the moral difference between the Left and the Right, and between the Democratic and the Republican parties.


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