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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Monday, June 20, 2016

Imagine If Conservatives Disrupted A Hillary Clinton Rally

The violence at Trump campaign events is only the latest example of what has become the defining feature of left-wing protest.

by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: A thought experiment: Imagine that a mob of conservatives gathered to protest a Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders campaign event or Black Lives Matter rally. Imagine that these protesters not only demonstrated outside but also disrupted the event inside, disrupting the speakers and taunting the audience. Imagine further that some of the demonstrators attacked event participants and even the police who were there to keep order.

What would happen?

The media would cover it endlessly, of course, and every liberal in the country would condemn the actions of the troublemakers in the strongest possible terms. All conservatives would be implicated in the violence and thus all conservatives would be forced to apologize for the actions of the few. In fact, conservatism itself would be indicted.

I’m pretty sure that’s what would happen. Then again, it’s hard to know for sure because conservative mob violence rarely happens. But we know what would happen if liberals used political violence as a form of protest because it occurs all the time.

It’s been most evident recently at Donald Trump rallies. At an event in San Jose, on June 2, protests outside turned ugly as demonstrators attacked Trump’s supporters. Eggs and water balloons were thrown, “Make America Great” hats were stolen and burned and several people punched Trump supporters until police intervened.

At an event in Albuquerque a week earlier, anti-Trump demonstrators verbally assaulted attendees and attacked police. The Associated Press reported that according to Albuquerque attorney Doug Antoon, “rocks were flying through the convention center windows” as people attempted to leave the event.

But the violence isn’t isolated to events related to Trump. In California recently, immigration activists beat up and harassed conservatives attempting to attend the state Republican convention.

On May Day, a socialist holiday, left-wing radicals in Seattle attacked police officers with rocks and Molotov cocktails. Nine people were arrested.

In March, liberal students who were protesting working conditions for some employees at the University of California-Berkeley rioted at an event hosted by Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich. Protesters rushed the stage and assaulted one of the speakers before police intervened.

You probably didn’t hear about any of these incidents. But no doubt you’ve heard about the violence at Donald Trump rallies. You’ve probably also been left with the impression that most of the violence at Trump rallies is being perpetrated by supporters of Trump and instigated by the candidate himself (with the laudable exception of a Washington Post story).

But that’s not so. As happened in Albuquerque, most of the Trump violence has come from those protesting against him. At dozens of events across the country this spring, protesters have set up road blocks, intimidated and attacked Trump supporters and made enough threats of violence to force the Trump campaign to cancel some of the rallies.

The violence at Trump campaign events is only the latest example of what has become the defining feature of left-wing protest. Calls to violence, vandalism, assault, looting, arson — these are all hallmarks of the left’s tactics when it attempts to shut down debate.

They were all on display during the Black Lives Matter protests, especially those in Baltimore and Saint Louis last summer. As the anti-police rhetoric of the BLM movement got worse, Deputy Darren H. Goforth was targeted and killed "because of his uniform."

When the violence becomes too much to ignore, many resort to claiming that it is racist to imply that BLM had anything to do with cop killings. The Root published a recent article titled, "The Absurdity of Blaming #BlackLivesMatter for Killing Cops."

New York Times columnist Charles Blow has written, “There seems to be a concerted effort to defame and damage Black Lives Matter, and one has to wonder why.”

Other major news outlets published pieces defending the left’s use of violence. Time magazine ran an opinion piece titled, “Ferguson: In defense of rioting.” The author claimed that “the violent protests in Ferguson, Mo., are part of the American experience. Peaceful protesting is a luxury only available to those safely in mainstream culture.”

Meanwhile, the left never hesitates to blame conservatives for instigating violence or, just as often, creating a “culture of violence.” It happened throughout the Tea Party protests starting in 2009, which were notable not for their violence but for their civility. Some liberals, including an ACLU attorney, even blamed "the Christian right" for the Orlando terrorist attack by a self-proclaimed supporter of the Islamic State group, a ridiculous assertion given that Christians have been leaders in warning the country of the threat of Islamic terrorism.

Occupy D.C.
The Occupy Wall Street movement, which sprang up in 2011 to protest capitalism, was riddled with violent episodes. In 2012, Democratic pollster Douglas Schoen interviewed 200 OWS protestors and found that nearly one third said they would support violence to advance their agenda.

Part of the blame goes to the media for ignoring the left’s violence while imagining it on the right. But the problem goes much deeper than the media. Violence and disruption have become not merely a tactic of left-wing activism and protest but an integral part of who left-wing activists are. In some cases, it seems political violence is not a means to an end but an end in itself.

I’m all for peaceful protest, and counter-protest, even when it’s obnoxious and offensive. It’s protected under the First Amendment’s freedom of speech and assembly. But violence isn’t protected and can’t be condoned. The vast majority of political violence in the U.S. occurs on the left. To claim otherwise does violence to the truth.
Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families He also shared this article at USA Today.

Tags: Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, political violence, demonstrators, liberals, political violence To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 3:00 PM - Post Link


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