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Thursday, January 5, 2017
Demonizing or excusing Trump?
Originally published in www.examiner.com on March 12th, 2016 by Don Juan Corzo
media outlets are still wondering if Republican frontrunner Donald Trump is
partly to blame for violence and the environment of hostility at his rallies
through his campaign.
Friday a Trump rally was postponed in Chicago after tensions rose and a clash
erupted between the supporters and protesters of the controversial billionaire.
Afterwards, Trump told CNN's anchor Don Lemon he didn't “regret at all” making
comments that might have incited his supporters to attack protesters in the
past few months.
Fox News and other right wing-leaning media outlets reported the
rally was cancelled because of “violent protesters” without recognizing Trump's
comments and supporters have contributed to that hostile environment.
During an interview with Fox News' talk show host Sean Hannity,
Trump complained how media don't report dispuption or protesters at Hillary
Clinton or Senator Bernie Sanders rallies. However, major outlets like CNN
have, indeed, reported protests in their rallies, but unlike Trump, both
democratic candidates haven't encouraged supporters to attack the protesters.
Furthermore, that hasn't been the case either in the other Republican
candidates' campaigns whose rallies haven't been characterized by violence or
threats towards protesters, or even journalists as has been the case with
Journalists are depicted in a negative light by Trump as
recently as the rally in Dayton, Ohio following the chaos in Chicago. They have
not been exempt to the violence at his rallies.
TIME Magazine photographer Christopher Morris was slam-choked by
one of Trump's secret service agents for barely stepping out of the media area
at a rally in Virginia in late February. A Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields
was manhandled by Trump's campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on at a rally in
Florida on February 8th. There's a real concern in the members of the press about the
freedom of the press under a Trump presidency.
Using his experience in media's modern mold of Jackass and the
Kardashians, the celebrity billionaire is effectively exploiting the anger in
the American population tired of the establishment, specifically the “poorly
educated” since they seem to be the easiest to influence with a populist front.
Trump is also deflecting his polarizing effect at the rallies
and blaming it on the establishment and even on President Barack Obama
depicting him as a divider. Instead of taking charge of the toxic nature his
rallies have grown into, he's excusing his supporters and protesters
aggressiveness by saying they're “very” angry at the state of the nation, the
economy and the U.S. current position in the world now.
Trump has been asked on repeated occasions directly or
indirectly to address his supporters about the hostile atmosphere in his
rallies, but he keeps giving evasive answers about how successful his campaign
is, or how “loving” and “amazing” his supporters are, or how protesters are
really “dangerous,” “bad dudes.”
In his attempt to further
manipulate people's minds, the real estate mogul has suggested that while the
police are doing a good job maintaining control of the crowds, he wishes they
weren't so afraid of acting with strength out of fear of getting in trouble or
losing their jobs.
If the University of Illinois was vetted by the Trump campaign
as a rally location, Trump knew the risks involved there and pulled the plug on
the event in the last minute in “a strongman political tactic,” to create the
incendiary situation between protesters and supporters, who had been there for
hours waiting to see the candidate.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews told Trump he believed he “could have
predicted this” confrontation when the GOP frontrunner told him that “two people that are experts said this increases the vote for
Maybe Trump will tone down his provocative rhetoric and try to
bring some civility into his campaign, but one only can wonder and brace for what
would happen after he gets elected.
As a young protester said in the aftermath of chaos in the university
pavilion in Chicago, “I'm for freedom of speech, but not for hate speech.” Trump would be wise to heed those words, even if he was to become POTUS.
True Trump Quotes
“Maybe he should have been roughed up, because it was absolutely
disgusting what he was doing,” - Trump on a protester who
was attacked by supporters at a rally in Birmingham, Alabama on November 21th,
“Don’t give him his coat! Keep his coat. Confiscate his coat.
You know it’s about ten degrees below zero outside.” -Trump to his security
personnel kicking out protesters on January 7th, 2016 in Vermont.
“Knock the crap out of ‘em. Would you? Seriously. Ok? Just knock
the hell—I promise you, I will pay for the legal fees.” -Donald Trump on protesters at rally in Cedar
Rapids, Iowa on February 1st, 2016.
“I’d like to punch him in the face, I’ll tell ya.” - Trump on a
protester who was kicked out at rally in Las Vegas on February 22nd, 2016.
“I love the old days. You know
what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this?
They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks.” - Trump at same rally in Las Vegas.