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Friday, February 24, 2017

 

Letter to Patricia Richardson, publisher of the Virginian Pilot

Dear Ms. Richardson:

The steady stream of hate directed at Donald Trump and his supporters on the pages of the Virginian Pilot really has to be seen to be believed.  The idea that Republicans are Nazis from whom women, Blacks, LGBTQ or those-of-to-be-determined-sex need to be protected is widespread on these pages.  In this, the Virginian Pilot has a lot in common with academia.

The paper reflects academia’s profound shock of Hillary Clinton’s defeat last year, reflecting the profound shock of many inside the media/campus bubble.  Academia offers “grief counseling” to students “traumatized” Trump’s election.  The Virginian Pilot offers unlimited access to the “letters to the editor” department.  At Virginia Tech the morning after the election, officials sent an email to students “waking up with fear, anxiety, concern, questions, and confusion among many other emotions,” directing them to campus services offering “support.”  The Virginian Pilot assured them that no one they write about voted for Trump so Trump can’t be a legitimate President.  Every day brings another story about a march, a demonstration, a riot and a claim that Putin put him in office.

In Greenwich Village, a woman who sounds exactly like any number of letter writers to the Virginian Pilot, let loose an obscenity-filled tirade against the police officers who were attempting to keep order outside New York University’s Kimmel Student Center, where College Republicans were hosting a speech by comedian Gavin McInnes. Screaming that President Trump’s supporters at the event were “Nazis,” the woman unleashed more than a dozen obscenities in less than two minutes. “Why are you here?” she screamed at the NYPD officers. “You’re not here to protect these students from Nazis. No, you’re not! This is completely [bleeped] up. And these students had to [bleeping] face them on their own. You should be ashamed of yourselves! You should be standing up to those Nazis!”  The woman was Professor Rebecca Goyette, an adjunct professor at Montclair State University in New Jersey. Professor Goyette last year staged an exhibit that included her fantasies of castrating Donald Trump.   You can see her “art” here: (http://archive.is/yO3a9)

There’s a certain playbook that Liberals follow: Nixon was Hitler, Goldwater was Hitler, Reagan was Hitler, Bush was Hitler and how Trump is Hitler.  Of course conservatives have also worried about presidents who abused their power. But calling Trump Hitler, or Mussolini, is now so common that it simply means that the writer simply doesn’t like Trump and has lost the intellectual battle. Name-calling is simply overdone and foolish, just as accusations of racism have become devalued; people stop paying attention and those who use these terms lose all credibility. 

It’s really simple.  If Trump is a Nazi, his supporters must be Nazis.  Someone voted for Trump? Nazi. Someone voted against Hillary? Nazi. Someone doesn’t agree with same-sex marriage? That was Barack Obama in 2008, so he’s a Nazi?

Polls show that over half of the country supports Trump’s temporary ban on refugees, only 38% disapprove.  An Emerson College poll found that the public views the Trump administration as more truthful than the news media, with 48% saying Trump is truthful, compared with only 39% who say the media are being truthful.

Among Independents 62% say they're not confident that the media will cover Trump fairly in the IBD/TIPP poll, and fewer than 19% describe the news media as truthful in the Emerson poll.

What's more, 59% of independents — and 57% of those who are ideologically moderate — say Democrats should find ways to work with Trump rather than try to obstruct him.

When Republicans lose elections they grumble and write letters to the editor.  Before the election, Leftists said if Trump won, that there would be violent mobs of hate; intolerant fascists would try to silence those with whom they disagree.  And they were right.  Did they know that they were talking about themselves?

How did we get to the point that when Democrats lose they take to the streets and beat their opponents bloody?  Part of the problem is that the legacy media provides cover for them; they are their publicity department.  It whitewashes the violence and intimidation.  Every riot is downgraded to a “demonstration” which is always “mostly peaceful.”  The LA Times referred to the murder of five police officers as part of a peaceful protest in which the chant of “hands up don’t shoot” was heard just before the killing began.  It was described by one participant as “… the most peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstration I'd been to.”

They said that if I voted for Trump, that groups of people would be identified and persecuted. And again, they were right. The press and the rest of the media identify anyone who supports the current president as either an extremist or a bigot.  Yet Trump won the Electoral College by 70 votes, which means his support is hardly extreme; in fact it’s mainstream.  Look at a map of voting patterns.  Democrats are concentrated in a few urban islands while the rest of America is Trump country.  Based on the narrative presented in the Virginian Pilot you appear to believe that most of America is out-of-step with America.

Day after day, week after week, the Virginian Pilot encourages anti-Trump vitriol, hate and violence by its editorial choices demonizing the President and his supporters, effectively justifying the violence done to those supporters who dare to raise their heads.  Do you really want to be the heirs of the editorial writers of the Jim Crow era?  They whipped up racists to do violence to innocent people who have the “wrong” skin color.  Is the Virginian Pilot going back to the days of “Massive Resistance?”  It remains to be seen how this will end, but I suspect it won’t end well.

It’s a mistake to go back to a time when the motto of the Virginian Pilot was  "True to the Democratic Party in victory or defeat."   I understand being partisan, leaning to the Left, being avowedly Liberal on the editorial pages.  But there are lines that should not be crossed.  In those ugly times newspapers didn’t actually urge the KKK to lynch black people, they just wrote about “uppity blacks” sullying the virtue of white women.  People who were on the edge of violence got the hint, and innocent people died. 

The press is always pressuring conservatives denounce hotheads on their side.  But when it comes to lunacy on the left, the media looks away when it’s not actually supportive.  That gives a green light to the conclusion that political opponents can be beaten, bloodied, or even murdered.  After all, what right-thinking social justice warrior would not kill Hitler if he could?

Don’t encourage urban warfare with a wink or a nod; it’s never a good idea.  Despite the fact that most of the violence has been directed at Trump supporters, there are hotheads on both sides.  The optics of masked rioters setting fires and smashing windows, and protesters standing in the schoolhouse door, as Democrats did in Washington DC the other day brings back memories of George Wallace.  Is this really the end of the political spectrum you want your newspaper to represent?

Your story about the local women who attended the Women’s March on Washington stands out in my mind as a great example of cherry picking, shaping the news to promote a Leftist worldview.  The story said that the hats were “cat-eared.”   What an interesting euphemism.  In reality they were shaped like vaginas.  The march was led and organized by people who wanted people to dress as women’s genitalia.  And women did.  Observers were blown away by the vulgarity of the speakers.  The celebrities like Ashley Judd who spoke to the women shouted obscenities, spewed hatred for the duly elected President who they denounced as a moral monster bringing the dark night of Fascism to this country.  One speaker, Madonna, told the crowd that she thought about “blowing up the White House.”  Another featured speaker, Donna Hylton, was a felon who spent decades in prison for  kidnapping, sodomizing and killing a real-estate broker, Thomas Vigliarolo.   If this is really: “… the best of what we are all about” as the story says, I would hate to see the worst.  The women from our area may be nice people, but they lent their presence to a bizarre and hate-filled event while your story omitted any reference to what the organizers were actually saying and doing.

On a closing note, I question the wisdom of aggressively alienating over half your readership. 


Very truly yours,

The Virginian

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