No, Mr Trump, we’re not the same as the neo-Nazis

From The Guardian UK:

In Charlottesville I faced off with men bearing torches and swastikas shouting ‘Jews will not replace us’. Yet the president thinks both sides are to blame

Tuesday 15 August 2017

The president of the United States called a mob of people marching with torches and chanting Nazi slogans “very fine people”. Fine people don’t chant Nazi slogans. Fine people don’t surround and attack college students. And fine people don’t stand with those who do.

I was there that night in Charlottesville. I can say with certainty that the only fine people I saw were the young students who stood outnumbered and ready to defend their campus and their beliefs against an onslaught of demagoguery.

I know some of those students. They were ready to die for what they believed in. I was prepared to die, too. A man wearing a swastika pin shouted transphobic and racist vitriol at me, inches from my face.

The only fine people that night were those sprayed with mace and doused with lighter fluid from the torches that they were beaten with, afraid of being burned alive. Fine people don’t wear swastikas. Yet President Trump blamed both sides, despite the fact that only one side was run down by a terrorist.

I was there when the attack happened. Despite the president deeming me – a transgender woman – unfit for military service, I ran toward the attacker with a weapon. I was ready to engage him if he tried to hurt more people.

I reached out to groups attending this event from the left, right and center to urge nonviolence. Meanwhile, the “unite the right” marchers said things like “we’ll fucking kill them if we have to” on camera.

The president can think “both sides” are to blame as long as he wants – but only one side beat a black man nearly to death with poles in a parking garage while hurling racist insults. It wasn’t our side. So why is the president blaming us along with the neo-Nazis?

It wasn’t the Ku Klux Klan and those who wave flags from the Third Reich who were urging nonviolence and trying to save lives in Charlottesville. It was leftist activists like me.

There is no room at the table for both you and decency, Mr President. As someone who stood face to face with men bearing torches and swastikas shouting “Jews will not replace us,” as someone who saw the blood spilled in Charlottesville first-hand, I can tell you this: you aren’t on my side. You aren’t on America’s side. You are on the wrong side.

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The Klan Comes for Me.

From This is Queerish:

That we would still be fighting the Civil War over 150 years after that surrender is either a great shock, or entirely predictable, depending on whom you ask.

Jenny Boylan
Aug. 18, 2017

Boothbay Harbor, Maine

The Burnt Island Light stands at the entrance to Boothbay Harbor. Built in 1821, it’s the second oldest lighthouse in Maine, and it’s one of the things that makes this town postcard pretty — along with its rocky shores and hushed coves. At this time of year, the streets are full of tourists and “summerpeople,” folks who’ve travelled here from around the country to enjoy — as our state bumper stickers say — “the way life should be.”

On Wednesday morning, fliers for the Ku Klux Klan appeared in town. This was the day after the President allowed as how some of the Neo-nazis in Charlottesville “were good people.”

That white nationalists, Klansmen, and Nazis live in Maine should surprise no one. The Klan thrived in this state in the 1920s, and in large measure was responsible for the election of Ralph Brewster, of Gardiner, as Governor in 1922. Back then, the victims of the Klan’s hate were the usual targets — immigrants, people of color, and Catholics.

But the fliers appearing this week have a new target.

TRANSGENDER IS AN ABOMINATION, they read, and quoted Deuternomy 22:5 (the one in which the Lord takes a very particular interest in what you’re wearing.) This was accompanied by a ripped photograph of a creepy dude with a beard and a bad wig looking menacingly at a terrified schoolgirl. THEY ARE JEOPARDIZING THE SAFETY OF BATHROOMS ACROSS THE NATION FOR OUR WOMEN AND CHILDREN, it continued. This was followed by a website URL for the Klan.

That website urged people to call the 24-Hour 800 number Klanline, where a recorded voice urged callers to “have a great white day.”

I’ve lived in Maine for just shy of thirty years now, sixteen of those years as an out trans woman. I’d be lying if I said that everyone I’ve encountered was universally accepting, but mostly people have been pleasant enough — and indeed, earlier this very day someone who’d seen me on television stopped me on the street to tell me her “heart had opened.” On another occasion, a conservative friend of mine (who’d been worried about my appearance pre-transition as I unexpectedly became more willowy) discussed the denouement of that transformation with his brother. “I finally found out what was wrong with Boylan,” he said.

When his brother asked him, “What?” my friend replied, with a grin: “Not a goddamn thing.”

And yet, here we are, in 2017, with a president allowing as how both Nazis and those who oppose them are morally more or less the same. Meanwhile, our Tea Party governor, Paul LePage, said on the day after the KKK flyers appeared that taking down Confederate statues was the same as taking down monuments to the victims of 9/11. (He also said that he didn’t hear anything about the disaster in Charlottesville until Tuesday because he doesn’t watch television or read newspapers. He calls journalists “pencil terrorists.”)

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‘They’re freaking chanting Jews will not replace us!’: Cooper corners guest for downplaying neo-Nazi rally

From Raw Story:

15 Aug 2017

When a guest on Anderson Cooper 360 tried to dismiss the neo-Nazis and klansmen at Saturday’s “Unite the Right” rally as a few bad apples, both the host and other guests were not having it.

“Today he’s saying that the people who were rallying around the Robert E. Lee statue on Friday night, with tiki torches of all things, chanting ‘Jews will not replace us’ and ‘blood and soil,’ calling the small group of counterprotesters who were there, calling them faggots — how do you defend that?” Cooper asked former George W. Bush staffer and current President Donald Trump supporter Paris Dennard.  “How do you defend the president for what he said today? Those people — he was saying that they were just quietly protesting the statue.”

“There were people on the other side chanting ‘Black Lives Matter,’” Dennard began, attempting to claim that not all the people present at the rally were violent white supremacists.

In a bizarre inverse of Trump’s claim of record-breaking crowds at his inauguration, Dennard continued his line of pursuit by claiming the majority of the crowds in Charlottesville weren’t violent bigots.

“What you’re saying literally makes no sense,” Cooper retorted. “I’m not characterizing the Black Lives Matter people as neo-Nazis — there was a small group of them, of mostly UVA students and their supporters, around the statue when the neo-Nazis arrived. It’s the people with tiki torches that the president is talking about as just being quiet, good people there just to protest the [removal of the] statue. They’re freaking chanting ‘Jews will not replace us’ on the streets of America.”

Even Dennards fellow guests took issue with his line of reasoning.

“The event said it was a pro-white demonstration,” CNN analyst Kirsten Powers said. “That’s what those people were there to do. Why are you acting like it’s just a few random bad apples?”

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What Happened to Trump’s Beef With North Korea? | The Resistance with Keith Olbermann

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