Hatred in America – Divided We Fall

Senior Airman Anthony Tasker, 50th Security Forces Squadron, provides first aid to simulated shooting victim, Senior Airman Oceana Goodsell, 50 SFS, during an active shooter exercise in the fitness center at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado. The base engaged in a week-long exercise that tested and assessed emergency response forces’ procedures while accomplishing the mission. – Courtesy photo / U.S. Air Force, Christopher DeWitt

Police believe the El Paso shooter targeted Latinos

By Terry Miller

Since last weekend, politicians, pundits and conspiracy theorists have pointed their collective fingers for the senseless killings (Texas and Ohio) at everyone/thing from Mr. Trump to the decline of “American family values,” to transgender acceptance — the list goes on.

Whichever way you look at the terrorists’ attacks, the senseless murders of innocent people is always linked to hatred in some shape or form.

“Even by America’s recent standards, it was an appalling weekend. On Saturday, a gunman slaughtered 20 people at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas; minutes before he opened fire, he reportedly went online and posted a violent screed that spoke of a ‘Hispanic invasion.’ The country was still grappling with the news when another gunman—in Dayton, Ohio, this time—murdered nine more people in a nightclub district,” Columbia Journalism Review reported.

Several Democratic candidates for president have said Trump’s past comments have contributed to divisions in the country. They are not alone, the social media platforms and newspapers across the U.S. and the world have placed the blame, at least in part, on the commander in chief’s rhetoric towards immigration and his alleged racist comments.

“I say to President Trump, please stop the racist anti-immigrant rhetoric,” Senator Bernie Sanders said. “Stop the hatred in this country which is creating the kind of violence that we see.”

Senator Kamala Harris said Trump’s language has “incredible consequence.” “We have a president of the United States who has chosen to use his words in a way that have been about selling hate and division among us,” she said.

Pete Buttigieg perhaps said it best, “What you have here is two things coming together. One, the weak gun safety policies of this country. And two, the rise of domestic terrorism inspired by white nationalists.” It’s about the hate rumbling around our society and Trump’s role in stoking it, but it’s also about failures that go much deeper than Trump. All of it demands our attention, he said in a television interview.

On Meet the Press, Sunday, Veronica Escobar, a Democrat who represents El Paso in Congress, made clear that her first responsibility is to her grieving community, but added an important point. “It’s not politicizing an event… [to say that] we have not just a gun epidemic in this country, but we have a hate epidemic in this country,” she said.

On Monday, former President Barack Obama said, “We should soundly reject language coming out of the mouths of any of our leaders that feeds a climate of fear and hatred or normalizes racist sentiments; leaders who demonize those who don’t look like us, or suggest that other people, including immigrants, threaten our way of life, or refer to other people as sub-human, or imply that America belongs to just one certain type of people.”

“It’s time for the overwhelming majority of Americans of goodwill, of every race and faith and political party, to say as much — clearly and unequivocally,” he added.

Once again, Trump blames the media for the latest terrorist attacks that took 31 lives over the weekend.

“The Media has a big responsibility to life and safety in our Country. Fake News has contributed greatly to the anger and rage that has built up over many years. News coverage has got to start being fair, balanced and unbiased or these terrible problems will only get worse!” President Trump tweeted on Monday.

According to CNN, Monday night Javier Amir Rodriguez’s family was among the crowd of mourners who gathered in a high school football field Monday evening to release white doves to remember him and the 21 other people killed in Saturday’s massacre at Walmart.

The 15-year-old was the youngest victim in a shooting that police say was committed by a white supremacist who drove hundreds of miles from a Dallas suburb to El Paso, Texas.

“Please understand, this violence, this hatred, will not define this community,” Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke said during the vigil at Horizon High School. “We will speak forever about Javier with pride and gratitude and love.”

The dead include at least 13 Americans, at least eight Mexicans and one German. At least one of the victims had both U.S. and Mexican citizenship.

On Wednesday morning, however, the president seemed more concerned at the New York Times coverage of White House reaction as he made his way to Texas and Ohio. In a series of tweets the president wrote: “’Trump Urges Unity Vs. Racism,’ was the correct description in the first headline by the Failing New York Times, but it was quickly changed to, ‘Assailing Hate But Not Guns,’ after the Radical Left Democrats went absolutely CRAZY! Fake News – That’s what we’re up against….. ‘This is an astounding development in journalism. I’ve never seen it happen before, I’ve just never seen anything like this! Is that journalism today? I don’t think so!’ Mark Penn, Former Clinton Advisor. @TuckerCarlson After 3 years I almost got a good headline from the Times!”

On Saturday morning, a young crazed gunman killed 22 people and injured more than two dozen others at a Walmart in El Paso. Just 13 hours later, another gunman killed nine people and wounded dozens more in downtown Dayton. The El Paso shooting is being investigated as a possible hate crime. Officials say the suspect posted a tirade that mimicked some of Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric.

In his first formal statement on the killings, delivered via teleprompter Monday, Trump condemned “racism, bigotry and white supremacy” while blaming the internet, video games and “mental illness” for the massacres. He also called for the nation to put aside partisan bickering. He did not, however, mention gun control.

“We’ll be meeting with first responders and law enforcement and some of the victims. I’ll be paying my respects and my regards. I’ll be going with the first lady, and it’s a good opportunity really to congratulate some of the police and law enforcement, and the job they’ve done was incredible, really incredible,” said President Trump.

The United States in 2019 alone has had 251 mass murders, define as an incident in which four or more people are shot, in 216 days.

August 8, 2019

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Terry Miller

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