Saturday, March 12, 2016

You Reap What You Sow

Yesterday, a rally for Presidential candidate Donald Trump was cancelled for safety concerns after waves of demonstrators descended upon the venue.  Demonstrators were protesting various statements Trump had made regarding Mexicans, Muslims, and Black Lives Matters supporters.

Trump has been blaming the demonstrators for inciting emotions and denying him of his 1st Amendment right to speak.

However, from a Libertarian standpoint, Trump is wrong on both counts.  

On the 2nd point, everyone has a 1st Amendment right to speak.  Trump does.  The protesters do.  

Trump also has to get used to the fact that as a public figure, he will get protesters and a press that doesn't always swoon at every word that comes out of his mouth.

On the 1st point, it is Trump who has incited emotions:
  • "The Mexican Government is forcing their most unwanted people into the United States. They are, in many cases, criminals, drug dealers, rapists, etc.” (interview on Fox News’ “Media Buzz,” July 5, 2015, quoted in the Washington Post, July 8, 2015)
  • "Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on."  (Trump campaign press release, quoted by CNN, December 8, 2015)
  • "'I'd like to punch him in the face,' Trump said, remarking that a man disrupting his rally was escorted out with a smile on his face."  (reported by CNN February 23, 2016)
  • "Knock the crap out of him, would you?" (Trump at a rally, reported by US News & World Report, March 11, 2016)
In recent rallies, a photographer was pushed to the ground when walking from the press area, various protesters were pushed and roughed up by security while being taunted while being removed from the venue, and "a reporter for the conservative website Breitbart, was grabbed by the arm and almost forced to the ground, apparently in an effort to prevent her from asking a question of the candidate." (quoted from a report by US News & World Report, March 11, 2016).

Clearly, these statements and actions foster suspicion and even hatred of protesters, as well as those groups he spoke against (Mexicans, Muslims, blacks).  And Trump cannot claim it's the protesters' fault when it is Trump who has said "I'd like to punch him in the face," and "Knock the crap out of him, would you?"

You reap what you sow!

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