We’ve entered an era of high dudgeon, and some on the Left have been pushed to a point of visceral reaction with which conservatives should be very familiar, because we run into such reactions from progressives again and again. So distraught are they over the election of Donald Trump to the presidency that their thinking turns to wondering how they can possibly associate — or even have civil discussions — with people who aren’t similarly distraught.
Look to an objective description of behavior for evidence. James Kennedy, the person behind Transport Providence and advocacy for various urbanist policies, such as a boulevard in lieu of the 6/10 connector, shot a series of angry tweets in my direction and then blocked me so I couldn’t easily figure out exactly what he was talking about, much less respond. What rational person does such things?
So as to address what Kennedy is talking about, I’ll provide his tweets (which I accessed by not being myself on Twitter). His visceral reaction was apparently in response to my suggestion that, “As the Left seeks to foment hate in the name of love, the Right should reinforce love in the name of love.” First, he highlights a P.S. to this post of mine from last May that reads:
P.S. — With regard to Mr. Quindazzi’s question about calling for the violent overthrow of the United States government, I’d suggest that, yes, that is protected speech. In fact, I’m getting ever closer to endorsing the suggestion, myself.
Then comes Kennedy’s tirade:
I think I made serious mistake, to which owe RI an apology: I took seriously the idea that might be honestly mistaken.
I think in this time of tremendous hate, it’s as important as ever to be clear about what you are: a demagogue and a liar.
There are many good Republicans out there, but what you do is stoke the flames of anti-immigrant hate.
In the next 4 years, reporters covering Current-Anchor’s pronouncements on supposed left hate/violence should remember this.
@NBC10_Bill @IanDon @TedNesi @JournalKate @ProjoMike See parent tweet.
If that gets the articles I’ve published there taken down then good, hope it does.
I feel ashamed b/c I worry my efforts to cross the aisle cast too much of a blind eye to this.
Not everyone who associates w/ conservative ideas in RI is bad, but Justin Katz definitely is. Evil racist.
If it’s possible to do so respectfully, I’d suggest that Master James’s tantrum is evidence of how poorly served so many Americans have been by our education system. Even if his supposed evidence of my evil weren’t clearly a quip offered as an afterthought on a blog — that is, even if one takes seriously my comment about violent overthrow — a rational person would have to acknowledge that “ever closer” means “not there, yet,” and even then understand that one can conclude that violent overthrow is necessary without its being a matter of hatred (see, e.g., “just war theory” et alia). I understand, though, that progressives don’t understand such nuanced thought, being motivated mainly by emotion, particularly hatred, themselves.
So, what is the takeaway, here? Feeling stymied in their push to dictate that their personal views must be imposed on every single American from coast to coast, Rhode Island progressives are doubling down rather than reassessing and are determined to make totems out of those nearby whom they can silence and oppress as stand-ins for the many Americans beyond their reach, from whom their domination has been blocked for the time being.