Condemning Dangerous Hate Speech


Progressives and the mainstream media spent much of yesterday in mock fainting spells over video from a tiny fringe group of white supremacists saying “hail” this and “hail” that, including the electoral victory of Donald Trump.  The idea was that Trump and anybody who might support him or anything associated with his agenda has to disclaim the fringe.

Such efforts are a society-wide attempt to get away with the logical fallacy of the loaded question.  The most common example is, “When did you stop beating your wife?,” in which the accusation of having beaten your wife is implicit.  The idea that broad groups of people must disclaim vile racists implicitly suggests that something those broad groups have done, said, or believed makes the association with the racists obvious, absent a denial.  Supporting the rule of law with respect to immigration, for example, is insinuated to be racist, although with the possibility that a specific person might be able to beg for indulgence from the progressive judges.

Making this wave of judgmentalism particularly gross are nearby examples of language from the Left that would, one would think, be deserving of attention from people who are truly after unity and mutual understanding (rather than pretending to be for those virtues so as to apply them as one-sided weapons).  Rhode Island journalists who thought it important to draw their readers’, friends’, or followers’ attention to a few people throwing the Nazi salute at a 200-person national conference of white supremacists have conspicuously chosen not to notice controversial talk among progressives in larger crowds at the State House.

Here’s a speaker from the Industrial Workers of the World at the first anti-Trump rally in Providence following the election, which was reportedly much larger than 200 people:

Donald Trump’s campaign is supported by people who have ties to fascism, to the clan, and most importantly to the Fraternal Order of Police. [Loud sustained boos from the audience.]  The Fraternal Order of Police is a racket that claims to be a union, and it operates by protecting police officers so they can kill and beat the s*** out of people of color in our country.  [Loud sustained boos from the audience, followed by a chant of “Hands up, don’t shoot.”]

Not so radical, hateful, or dangerous, you say?  Well, what if we mix in this headline from yesterday: “4 cops shot in 24 hours in 4 cities, 2 shootings called targeted“?

Some petty bigots might have gotten a little thrill out of openly flashing a Nazi salute at a poorly attended private conference, but the vicious group-think of crowds booing and chanting in affirmation of the slander that American police are wantonly slaughtering minority civilians is not only getting police officers killed, it’s making minority communities less safe through the Ferguson effect.

That serves the professional radical organizers well, of course, and yet the very people who insist, with our governor, that there is no place for hatred and divisiveness in our state will go right along supporting those who cheer and chant just that.

  • Raymond Carter

    An unlikely source, LA Skid Row poet Charles Bukowski said (paraphrase) “These who preach tolerance, love and peace are the most intolerant and hateful”

  • Mike678

    Tarring all with the excesses of a few is, as you state, poor reasoning. That It is effective and so often used is due to human frailty–we have far to many people that emote rather than think, don’t recognize their confirmation bias and so forth. Wouldn’t it be better for Democracy if our educational system actually taught students to critically think?

  • Philip Spadola

    Happy Thanksgiving to all my right wing friends ! I suggest that may wish to sample both wings today as you celebrate the holiday and you may wish to add this to your reading list . it’s food for thought.

    • Mike678

      It’s food for thought if you are a mindless drone that suffers from confirmation bias and a dearth of critical thinking. I lost count of the logical fallacies in the so-called “news” piece.

      Are their bad cops? You betcha–Police come from our society, thus are shaped by it. Though I am willing to bet that society in general is more flawed than the police.