Friday, March 11, 2016
If you have ever wondered about the sort of people who attended lynching parties in the America of the 20s, 30s or 40s and asked yourself how could they watch, cheer and participate in the brutalization, torture and murder of their fellow human beings you can satisfy your curiosity by looking at a Donald Trump rally. Human fecal emission John McGraw, 78 years old, thought that he would be a big brave man by throwing an elbow to the eye of 26 year old Rakeem Jones. Jones was being led out of a Trump rally. Unsurprisingly immediately after the assault the police swarmed on Jones, the victim of the crime and not McGraw, the perpetrator. At 78, McGraw mostly missed out on the classic period of American lynching, in which lynchings were announced days beforehand and whites sent each other postcards and other memorabilia to commemorate the event. But McGraw is the perfect age to have been one of the people protesting the desegregation efforts of the 50s and engage in some of the violence that took place then. I wouldn't be surprised if we find out that McGraw was among those who flocked to Woolworth's sit-ins to insult, spit on or attack civil rights protesters. Trump has consistently exhorted his followers to violence against protesters in his rallies. He's talked about how things would have been handled back in the day. Trump initially refused to disavow David Duke and the KKK. So it's not at all surprising that his supporters, riding his rhetorical wave of hatred, have felt emboldened to lash out against the other, that is anyone not supporting Trump, especially black people. People can talk about Trump's position on trade or illegal immigration or whatever. But it's clear that for a not insignificant number of his supporters, their support arises from the fact that Trump panders to their worst instincts. They want to beat up people who disagree with them. They want to torture or kill the families of terrorism suspects. And they want to kill dissenters. There is no reasoning with people like McGraw. McGraw's a coward of course. He never would have put his hands on Jones were they mano a mano on the street. But there are a lot of people like McGraw in this world. They get courageous when they and likeminded people outnumber you 10,000 to 1. However there is a solution. North Carolina and several other states are stand your ground states. Jones and other protesters should obey the law but make it clear that anyone illegally laying hands on them won't get a chance to do so again.
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