Earlier this week, a U.S. Coast Guardsman was arrested for plotting to carry out a mass assassination attempt against an entire roster of prominent Democrats, ranging from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to rising star Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Lieutenant Christopher Hasson, the man arrested in the case, was found with a large stockpile of firearms and ammunition and had ties to white nationalists.
The sad reality is that this disturbing arrest barely even registers as a blip of surprise in our national discourse due to the increasing regularity of incidents like this. Trump has spread an atmosphere of division and fear across the entire country with his hateful rhetoric and his constant demonization of the free press and the Democratic Party.
Every time he refers to the media as the “enemy of the people” he is making it more likely that men like Hasson will take drastic measures against those they dislike. The president’s constant bandying about of rank conspiracy theories only makes things worse, as it makes his supporters more and more untethered from reality and thus more likely to act out in deranged, violent fashion.
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Earlier today, White House Press Secretary brushed off the incident by making the absurd claim that President Trump has never done anything but condemn violence, even though he has directly urged his supporters to “knock the crap” out of hecklers at his rallies, among other such exhortations.
Now, Trump himself has been asked about the Hasson bust, and his answer is as cowardly as one might expect. He refused to admit that his bombastic, unhinged rhetoric plays any part in these kinds of incidents. When pressed over whether or not he thinks he should moderate his own language, Trump replied no.
“I think my language is very nice,” the president added in what can only be considered a joke.
After all, this is a man who attacks his opponents on Twitter daily, who coins insulting nicknames for them, and spreads patently false rumors about them. Not even his most ardent fans would argue that his language is “nice.” For him to so blithely make light of a scheme to wipe out his political opponents with violence is completely inexcusable.
Watch the clip below.
Trump denies that his incendiary rhetoric played any role in motivating the Coast Guard officer who is a fan of his and allegedly plotted to kill Trump's critics in media and politics: "I think my language is very nice." pic.twitter.com/Ie7afV5Ema
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 22, 2019