Thoughts and observations

Week 33, 2017

The violent white supremacist march in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend set the tone for an awful week in American politics.

Vice News Tonight went behind the scenes in Elle Reeve's piece Charlottesville: Race and Terror. It shows how tense and scary it was and makes it abundantly clear the violent rally was merely using the Confederate statue as an excuse to push their racist agenda.

Trump's response was awful, and ultimately got even worse on Tuesday. It was best summarized by The New York Times:

President Trump buoyed the white nationalist movement on Tuesday as no president has done in generations — equating activists protesting racism with the neo-Nazis and white supremacists who rampaged in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend.

Never has he gone as far in defending their actions as he did during a wild, street-corner shouting match of a news conference in the gilded lobby of Trump Tower, angrily asserting that so-called alt-left activists were just as responsible for the bloody confrontation as marchers brandishing swastikas, Confederate battle flags, anti-Semitic banners and “Trump/Pence” signs.

Unfortunately and unsurprisingly few Republican's have condemned Trump's response. Democratic Reps. According to Think Progress only 28 of 292 congressional republicans have criticized Trump by name.

Jerry Nadler of New York, Bonnie Watson Coleman of New Jersey and Pramila Jayapal of Washington have introduced a censure resolution. All members of congress who abhor racism, white supremacy and neo-nazi's should put themselves on record by signing on.

Daniel Pfeiffer sums up on this week's Pod Save America:

If you are so morally outraged by the President's support of Nazis [...] do something about it. Put yourself on record that you disapprove of what Donald Trump said–not the general concept of racism, but of the racist in chief.


Meanwhile in Silicon Valley, Cloudflare terminated the account of the Daily Stormer. This continues the discussion if tech companies can truly be neutral and the role they play in protecting free speech and protecting the vulnerable from violence and hate speech. Further reading at The Atlantic (ht Azeem Azhar


I hope to spend more time relaxing, reading and cycling this week, rather than anxiously keeping up with the news cycle.