Vail Daily column: Plenty of blame to go around
August 14, 2017
Editor's note: Find a cited version of this column at http://www.vaildaily.com.
This past week has been little more than a "typical mud romp" between two children yelling at each other in the wet sandbox over who has the biggest "hands."
One minute, we see Kevin Bacon in "Animal House" shouting to the oncoming onslaught, "All is well!" and the next, we have Patrick Swayze in the moronic "Next of Kin" promising, "You ain't seen bad yet … but it's a'comin' …"
In other words, the letters in "typical mud romp" can be rearranged to spell "Trump diplomacy."
But all that macho, testosterone-filled international nonsense takes a temporary backseat to the American macho, testosterone-filled nonsense that took place this past weekend in Virginia.
To be perfectly clear up front, the modern phrase "alt-right" is nothing more than code for Nazi. These white supremacists playing military dress-up with their little matching ties and hats and carrying tiki-torches while shouting "Sieg Heil" and "Sieg Trump" are simply a little Nazi horde begging for attention with violence and hatred.
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Pretty much the same as Kim Jung Un in North Korea.
But can the blame be placed at the foot of Trump Towers and the vindictive narcissism of its inhabitants?
Of course not, as the blame belongs to each and every one of us. All Americans are complicit to some degree, as these extremist fringe groups of racist hate have existed as long as America has been America, but they certainly have been emboldened lately thanks to the hateful rhetoric during the Trump campaign and what many see as the behind-the-scenes control by alt-right kingpin and White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon.
Yet, looking back on the past year or so, we all saw and heard the Trump comments about the Khan family, Gonzalo Curiel (the judge with the "Mexican-sounding" name), Miss Piggy, Pocahontas, Bimbo Megyn Kelly, the criminal and rapist Mexicans, the non-hero POW John McCain, people with disabilities, little Marco Rubio, the "stupid people of Iowa" and repeated shouts of "Knock the crap out of 'em!"
Perhaps there is a connection, after all.
Like Muslims and terrorism, while it's certainly not true that all Trump supporters are Nazis and white supremacists, all Nazis and white supremacists appear to be Trump supporters and are the remnants of his dwindling base.
Last weekend had nothing to do with free speech and everything to do with white men bringing guns, clubs, torches and shields to a "peaceful" demonstration. Most of us have family members who hunted down and exterminated these vile creatures known as Nazis more than 70 years ago, so while our Constitution provides a right to their hate, it does not provide a right to be free of the consequences.
Let's defeat these bastards once again.
It's amazing to me that they don't realize the phrase "Proud American Nazi" is an oxymoron.
I am also fully aware there are some of you here in Happy Valley who actually condone this behavior and choose to remain ignorant, just please attempt to understand that standing up against bigotry is not another form of bigotry.
It is simply the right thing to do.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards, writes weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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