As the shutdown drags on into its 34th day, President Trump is coming to terms with the fact that he’s running out of both options and excuses. He’s been reduced to shouting racist nursery rhymes into the void of social media, repeating “BUILD A WALL AND CRIME WILL FALL” and smearing illegal immigrants as in the vain hopes that doing so will eventually lead to him getting what he wants.
CNN anchor Chris Cuomo was faced with that same racist talking points from his Trump-supporting guests on his show — and shut them down in epic fashion.
“If you build the wall, crime will fall. It won’t be eliminated, but it will fall. Here’s the thing about illegal alien crime. Illegal alien crime is 100% preventable in every case. Over the weekend, we just had an illegal alien kill an elderly couple in Nevada, this is very real world pain that these people have to deal with. One of the tools to fight that kind of illegality and that kind of pain is a border wall. That’s what law enforcement tells us they need!” railed Trump Hispanic Advisory Council president Steve Cortes, delighted at having a platform from which to dehumanize immigrants and smear them all as murderous criminals.
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.@ChrisCuomo’s slam-dunk rebuke of nonsense right-wing talking points like “BULD THE WALL & CRIME WILL FALL” and “VENEZUELA!!” is so refreshing that I genuinely feel bad about beefing with him yesterday.
I hate to admit this but Cuomo is… good, folks.pic.twitter.com/VcEaRUklj0
— Jules Suzdaltsev (@jules_su) January 24, 2019
Cuomo, in a surprising show of fiery resolve, shut down the president’s talking head and exposed the preposterous double standard that Cortes is trying to apply to immigrants.
He followed that with the acknowledgment that unlike crime itself, the root causes of most crimes — poverty and resource scarcity — are in fact entirely preventable, and that calls for border walls and harsher criminal prosecution will only make things much worse.
“You apply that rationale to no other type of crime prevention in this country. The idea that something is 100% preventable — you know what’s 100% preventable? POVERTY. You know what’s 100% preventable? HUNGER. In the richest country in the world! No urgency like that from you…you give people jobs! You bring programs that bring the economy —”
Cortes cuts him off at this point to sneer at Cuomo’s “socialism” and immediately plays the tired and trite “what about Venezuela” card — but gets more than he bargained for, as Cuomo suddenly overrode the internal programming that prevents corporate U.S. media figures from discussing Venezuela in good faith and pointed out that the economic crisis in the troubled South American nation is greatly exacerbated by the United States’ sanctions regime against it:
“Venezuela? Cause that’s a great strategy you’ve got going on there. You starve these countries of support, then you create a situation on the ground that they can blow up, and then you sit back and watch them burn!”
It is incredibly refreshing to see a CNN news anchor not only smack down the simply appalling xenophobia coming from a Trump sycophant but also to see them dare to acknowledge the role that the world’s historic income inequality plays in provoking crime and inflicting suffering on everyday people — and the role that the United States plays in perpetuating that inequality, even within our own country.