Axios: Reparations: Where the 2020 Democratic candidates stand
Axios: Reparations: Where the 2020 Democratic candidates stand
Trump Fans the Flames of a Racial Fire ...
When it comes to race, Mr. Trump plays with fire like no other president in a century. While others who occupied the White House at times skirted close to or even over the line, finding ways to appeal to the resentments of white Americans with subtle and not-so-subtle appeals, none of them in modern times fanned the flames as overtly, relentlessly and even eagerly as Mr. Trump.
His attack on the Democratic congresswomen came on the same day his administration was threatening mass roundups of immigrants living in the country illegally. And it came just days after he hosted some of the most incendiary right-wing voices on the internet at the White House and vowed to find another way to count citizens separately from noncitizens despite a Supreme Court ruling that blocked him from adding a question to the once-a-decade census.
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His assumption that the House Democrats must have been born in another country — or that they did not belong here if they were — fits an us-against-them political strategy that has been at the heart of Mr. Trump’s presidency from the start. Heading into next year’s election, he appears to be drawing a deep line between the white, native-born America of his memory and the ethnically diverse, increasingly foreign-born country he is presiding over, challenging voters in 2020 to declare which side of that line they are on.
“In many ways, this is the most insidious kind of racial demagoguery,” said Douglas A. Blackmon, the author of “Slavery by Another Name,” a Pulitzer Prize-winning history of racial servitude in America between the Civil War and World War II. “The president has moved beyond invoking the obvious racial slanders of 50 years ago — clichés like black neighborhoods ‘on fire’ — and is now invoking the white supremacist mentality of the early 1900s, when anyone who looked ‘not white’ could be labeled as unwelcome in America.”
Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg says white supremacy could be 'issue that ends this country'
All of the Democratic presidential candidates have condemned Donald Trump's racist comments directed at four congresswomen last week, and the chants of "send her back" directed at Rep. Ilhan Omar at a rally a day later, but Pete Buttigieg took it a step further on Saturday.
Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, was stumping in Iowa over the weekend, where he told ABC News that the issue of white supremacy -- an accusation often lobbed at Trump by the left -- "could be the lurking issue that ends this country."
The mayor said the current climate could escalate, going as far as to mention the Civil War.
"That is the only issue that almost ended this country. … We’ve had a lot challenges in this country, but the one that actually almost ended this country in the Civil War was white supremacy," Buttigieg said. "It could be the lurking issue that ends this country in the future, if we don’t wrangle it down in our time."
'It's a political civil war': Trump's racist tirades set tone for 2020
After Trump again embraced white identity politics, Charlottesville – the scene of a far-right murder two years ago – fears racial tensions could explode again ...
Trump’s claim that there had been “very fine people on both sides” was a comment that will live in infamy. This week he did it again, tweeting that progressive congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib should “go back” to their countries. Then, at a rally on Wednesday night, Trump again tore into Omar, a US citizen born in Somalia, and remained silent for 13 chilling seconds as the crowd chanted: “Send her back! Send her back!”
It was a clarifying moment about the two faces of America in 2019. One is that of a 73-year-old white man spewing nativist bigotry and raging against change. The other is that of a 37-year-old hijab-wearing Muslim woman, a refugee from Africa turned congresswoman greeted with cries of “Welcome home, Ilhan!” on her return to Minnesota.
To many this feels like a pivot point in history. In the New Yorker, Susan Glasser wrote of Trump: “Half of the country is appalled but not really sure how to combat him; the other half is cheering, or at least averting its gaze. This is what a political civil war looks like, with words, for now, as weapons.” ...
Intentionally or not, Trump’s embrace of white identity politics may work to his advantage next year. Only four House Republicans voted for a resolution to condemn his remarks. A Reuters/Ipsos poll showed his net approval among Republicans rose by five points to 72%.
“It’s a brilliant strategy,” said Smith, who intends to vote for Trump again. “He is making those four the face of the Democratic party and the party is not distancing itself from them. Unless the Democrats become more realistic about what America wants and needs, he’s going to point it out over and over again.”
National Geographic: The first Europeans weren’t who you might think
The idea that there were once “pure” populations of ancestral Europeans, there since the days of woolly mammoths, has inspired ideologues since well before the Nazis. It has long nourished white racism, and in recent years it has stoked fears about the impact of immigrants: fears that have threatened to rip apart the European Union and roiled politics in the United States.
Now scientists are delivering new answers to the question of who Europeans really are and where they came from. Their findings suggest that the continent has been a melting pot since the Ice Age. Europeans living today, in whatever country, are a varying mix of ancient bloodlines hailing from Africa, the Middle East, and the Russian steppe.
The New Yorker - Masha Gessen: The Weaponization of National Belonging, from Nazi Germany to Trump
Buttigieg calls Trump a racist
Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg called President Trump a racist on Friday when he addressed the National Urban League in Indianapolis.
“My generation saw this country elect its first black president and then turn around and elect a racist to the White House — and we ought to call that what it is,” Buttigieg said to a round of applause at the forum, according to the Indianapolis Star.
The comments marked one of the South Bend, Ind., mayor's strongest rebukes of the president on the campaign trail.
Buttigieg also discussed his plan to deal with systemic racism, which his campaign has dubbed "the Douglass Plan" after abolitionist Frederick Douglass.
“I think for too long we have believed that we were on a path where systemic racism was going to take care of itself in this country,” Buttigieg said. “I’m going to be speaking about these issues not only with mostly black audiences, but with mostly white audiences.”
Buttigieg is trying to make inroads with black voters, a crucial voting bloc in the party's primary.
Adding:How Democrats plan to use gun control to beat Trump
Democratic candidates are drawing a direct line between the president and violent white supremacists.
DES MOINES — A Democratic presidential field that has struggled to precisely define its general election indictment of Donald Trump appears finally to have found it.
In the wake of mass shootings in Ohio and Texas — the latter of which was tied to a suspect whose anti-immigrant sentiments led to the killing of 22 people — candidates are road-testing a withering argument that draws a direct line between gun violence and the president’s racist rhetoric.
“We are living with a toxic brew of two different things, each of which is claiming lives and each of which represents a national security emergency in this country,” South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg said at a forum on gun violence here on Saturday. “One of them is the ready availability of guns and the way they can fall into the wrong hands. The other is the rise of hate. And when they come into contact with each other, it is deadly.”
The previous day, Julián Castro, the former mayor of San Antonio and Obama Cabinet secretary, made an equally explicit connection before arriving at the Iowa State Fair: “Disarm Hate: Combating White Nationalism and Gun Violence,” he titled the gun control proposal he released to coincide with the weekend of campaigning.
As they converged this past weekend in Iowa — a state with a robust gun culture and an affinity for the Republican president — the stinging case for gun control laid out by White House hopefuls had little in common with past appeals for additional regulation and much to do with the implications of Trump’s role in stoking violent white nationalism.
Some have gone beyond implying: Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke and Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, among other candidates, describe Trump a white supremacist. Sen. Cory Booker, appearing at the Democratic Wing Ding dinner in Clear Lake, lamented a week in which “Americans were slaughtered,” saying that amid the primary’s discussion of “the issues that drive us … the values that are underneath those issues is what we need to hit on again and again and again.”
Campaign Website: Kamala Harris’ Plan to Disarm the Threat of Domestic Terrorism
The Longer Trump Stays in Office, the More Americans Oppose His Views
The president is reshaping Americans' political views, just not the way he intended.
A Reuters poll released today contains a trove of interesting data on race. Trump has long sought to use racial tension to gain political leverage, but this summer he has become especially explicit about exploiting and exaggerating racial divisions, with a series of racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen, and then on their colleague Elijah Cummings, as a strategy ahead of the 2020 election.
But the Reuters poll casts doubt on that strategy: “The Reuters analysis also found that Americans were less likely to express feelings of racial anxiety this year, and they were more likely to empathize with African Americans. This was also true for white Americans and whites without a college degree, who largely backed Trump in 2016.”
Among the details, the number of whites who say “America must protect and preserve its White European heritage” has sunk nine points since last August. The percentages of whites, and white Republicans, who strongly agree that “white people are currently under attack in this country” have each dropped by roughly 25 points from the same time two years ago. ...
But the Trump era has also radicalized Democrats, and especially white Democrats, who by some measures are actually more liberal on race than fellow Democrats who are minorities. Reuters found that more Democrats say blacks are treated unfairly at work and by the police than in 2016—remarkable given how coverage of police violence toward African Americans has dropped in the past few years—while Republican attitudes have remained unchanged.
Meanwhile, opinion shifts like the ones on race appear elsewhere. Consider immigration, which is Trump’s signature issue—though it is also inextricable from race, especially given Trump’s focus on and rhetoric about Hispanic immigration.
Reuters found that white Americans are 19 percent more supportive of a path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants than they were four years ago, and slightly less supportive of increased deportations. Other polls find related results. A record-high number of Americans—75 percent—said in 2018 that immigration is good for the United States. Although the Trump administration took steps last week to limit even legal immigration, the Trump presidency has seen an increase in the number of Americans who support more legal immigration—not just among Democrats, but even slightly among Republicans.
Far-right extremists appropriate Indigenous struggles for violent ends
From Nazi Germany to Norway and El Paso, white nationalists use Indigenous imagery to justify racist violence. ...
For decades now, warped ideas about Indigenous struggles have buoyed conservative rhetoric and white nationalist fantasies and been used to justify racist violence. And while the far and extreme right share a hollow, disingenuous affinity with Indigenous people, their appropriation of Indigenous victimhood and rights language is providing long-burning fuel for everything from right-wing propaganda on Fox News to extremist manifestos and movements worldwide.
In 2011, for instance, a far-right terrorist in Norway killed eight people in a bombing and another 69 at a youth camp. In his 1,500-page manifesto, the killer argued that the rhetoric of white nationalism was ultimately doomed to fail due to its connections to Hitler. Instead of using language and ideas associated with Nazis, the author chose to exploit an “untapped goldmine” of Indigenous rights language. “We are no more terrorists than Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse or Chief Gall who fought for their people against the imperialist General Armstrong Custer,” reads the manifesto. “Our struggle will be a lot easier if European nationalist use smart and defusing arguments instead of using supremacist arguments which can be efficiently squashed through psychological warfare propaganda or by anti-Nazi policies.” To the author, embracing the language of Indigenous rights and victimhood was a softer, even sympathetic, strategy that would embolden efforts to reclaim European land and culture from immigrants.
A few months after the Norway attack, a German far-right anti-immigration propaganda video uploaded to YouTube featured a Green Party politician and a stereotypical “Cherokee” Indian maiden, a foreign exchange student who hopes to become a naturalized German citizen. The politician quickly obliges — a dig at the party's “multicultural ideals” — and the maiden tells a story about the massacre of her people by European immigrants who were allowed to settle the land by traitors in her tribe. The righteous xenophobia revealed here has plenty of company: In 2014, the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), another far-right German nationalist party, echoed the same sentiment in a meme of Hunkpapa Lakota Chief Sitting Bull, with a caption that warned: “Indians could not stop immigration. Now they live on reservations.”
“Nowadays, you see internet memes and videos on YouTube of people who tell the story of the conquest of North America and who skew historical references,” said Frank Usbeck, curator for the Americas at the State Art Collections in Dresden and former professor of American Studies at the University of Leipzig in Germany. “ 'Look at the Native Americans who invited the foreigners as refugees.' ”
Usbeck, who has studied the links between Indigenous people and white nationalists for years, began by examining the relationship between German perceptions of Native Americans and the Völkisch Movement’s “blood and soil” ideology, which has roots in the 19th century. “Constructing a national identity among Germans seems to have had strong roots in identifying with Native Americans and also setting oneself aside from many other Europeans,” said Usbeck, adding that this need to belong to the land and to connect with an “Indigenous” identity can be traced to early German nationalist studies of pre-Roman Germanic tribes.
Before and during World War II, Nazi propaganda declared American cultural imperialism a threat to German culture, noting that it had destroyed the Native American way of life and comparing U.S. bombing campaigns in German cities to American frontier massacres. Usbeck calls this “co-victimization” — an invented affinity with the Native American experience of genocide and cultural loss, rhetorically linked to ideas of German victimhood. The Nazis thereby used Indigenous people to create a myth of survival, of a people fighting heroically for their homeland.
The Nation: The White Power Movement from Reagan to Trump
Kathleen Belew explains the links between “lone wolf” white supremacist attacks like those in Charleston, Charlottesville, and El Paso.
New Republic: The Vigilante President
As impeachment and the 2020 election loom, Trump’s hard-core supporters are poised to unleash a wave of violence against their enemies.
F.B.I. and Prosecutors Try Speaking Plainly About Domestic Terrorism
They want to reassure the public that they are combating racist and politically motivated bloodshed — and they fear that the 2020 campaign could spark violence.
OAKWOOD VILLAGE, Ohio — As a group of prominent black pastors listened, the top federal prosecutor in northern Ohio, Justin E. Herdman, spoke recently at Mount Zion church about the prospect that a gunman could target one of their congregations.
The subtext was clear. Mr. Herdman is among a group of federal law enforcement officials who have begun speaking more forthrightly about fighting domestic terrorism from the front lines. They want to reassure a skeptical public that the Justice Department is forcefully combating racist and politically motivated violence in the Trump era, amid their own mounting concerns about a possible surge in attacks sparked by the 2020 election.
“When I sit in church,” Mr. Herdman told the pastors, “I have one eye on what’s going on at the altar, and I have got one eye on the entrance to the sanctuary.”
“Mm-hmm,” the pastors responded in unison.
The community relations effort is the most visible of several aggressive steps by federal prosecutors and F.B.I. agents to combat domestic terrorism. The bureau has about 850 open investigations across the United States. Prosecutors have backed rewriting the laws on domestic terrorism. And in northern Ohio, Mr. Herdman has encouraged his investigators to use wiretaps, one of their most intrusive tools, in such cases.
Their efforts show how federal law enforcement officials are fighting domestic terrorism and its underlying ideologies, including white nationalism and neo-Nazism, as they navigate not only demands to do more to stop high-profile mass shootings but also limits on their power, like First Amendment protections for hate speech.
‘Nothing Less Than a Civil War’: These White Voters on the Far Right See Doom Without Trump
Deeply conservative, they organize online and outside the Republican Party apparatus, engaging in more explicit versions of the chest-beating seen at the president’s rallies. ...
But this October morning was “Trumpstock,” a small festival celebrating the president. The speakers included the local Republican congressman, Paul Gosar, and lesser-known conservative personalities. There was a fringe 2020 Senate candidate in Arizona who ran a website that published sexually explicit photos of women without their consent; a pro-Trump rapper whose lyrics include a racist slur aimed at Barack Obama; and a North Carolina activist who once said of Muslims, “I will kill every one of them before they get to me.”
All were welcome, except liberals.
“They label us white nationalists, or white supremacists,” volunteered Guy Taiho Decker, who drove from California to attend the event. A right-wing protester, he has previously been arrested on charges of making terrorist threats.
“There’s no such thing as a white supremacist, just like there’s no such thing as a unicorn,” Mr. Decker said. “We’re patriots.”
As Mr. Trump’s bid for re-election shifts into higher gear, his campaign hopes to recapture voters who drifted away from the party in 2018 and 2019: independents who embraced moderate Democratic candidates, suburban women tired of Mr. Trump’s personal conduct and working-class voters who haven’t benefited from his economic policies.
But if any group remains singularly loyal to Mr. Trump, it is the small but impassioned number of white voters on the far right, often in rural communities like Golden Valley, who extol him as a cultural champion reclaiming the country from undeserving outsiders.
These voters don’t passively tolerate Mr. Trump’s “build a wall” message or his ban on travel from predominantly Muslim countries — they’re what motivates them. They see themselves in his fear-based identity politics, bolstered by conspiratorial rhetoric about caravans of immigrants and Democratic “coups.”
Deadline Detroit: Biden Calls Michigan Plotters 'Domestic Terrorists,' Compares Actions to ISIS
Former Vice President Joe Biden, campaigning in Southfield on Friday, called the 14 self-styled militia members charged in the suspected plot of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer "domestic terrorists" and compared their actions to ISIS.
"We're grateful to the FBI and law enforcement who discovered these domestic terrorists and stopped them," Biden said at a campaign stop attended by Whitmer and Sens. Gary Peters and Debbie Stabenow.
"Make no mistake, that's who they are, domestic terrorists, flat terrorists, planning to blow up a bridge on American soil to threatening the lives of police officers to kidnapping an elected leader. Now, we're finding out the same thing was happening in Virginia. You know it's the sort of behavior you might expect from ISIS."
"And It should shock the conscience of every American, every American, and the failure to condemn these folks is stunning from the outset," he said, an obvious shot at President Trump.
"Words of a president matter, particularly when the president tweeted 'Liberate Michigan.'... That's the call that was heard. That was the dog whistle."
Biden also praised the state's top Democrat: "There’s not a better governor in the United States of American than Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. That's a fact. I met virtually all of them."
From the same article...
In interviews, people in the crowd described a white America under threat as racial minorities typified by Mr. Obama, the country’s first black president, gain political power. They described Mr. Trump as an inspirational figure who is undoing Mr. Obama’s legacy and beating back the perceived threat of Muslim and Latino immigrants, whom they denounced in prejudiced terms.
“I don’t have a problem with Muslims,” said Angus Smith, an Arizona resident who attended the festival, “but can they take the rag off their head out of respect for our country?”
HuffPo: Chilling Training Videos Released Of Militia Men Charged In Michigan Gov. Kidnap Plot
“I’m sick of being robbed and enslaved by the state ... they are the enemy. Period,” says one suspect in a video.
Federal officials have released disturbing videos, including what appears to be practice for an armed assault, of members of a Michigan militia who have been charged with allegedly plotting to kidnap the state’s governor.
The videos, along with photos and other exhibits, were introduced into evidence at a preliminary examination in a federal district court in Grand Rapids for six men charged with conspiring to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
The videos presented a dramatic contrast to a defense attorney’s claim in court Friday that the alleged plot to kidnap the Democratic governor was just “loose talk.”
The men planned to kidnap Whitmer, whom they referred to as a “tyrant bitch,” because of her restrictions on businesses and safety requirements such as face masks to help stem the spread of COVID-19, according to an FBI affidavit filed in court last week.
The apparent training video emerged as President Donald Trump continued his attacks on Whitmer at a Michigan rally Saturday. He worked the crowd into a frenzy, calling for all business restrictions to be dropped, then repeated the crowd’s chant: “Lock her up” — though Whitmer has not been charged or even suspected of any crime whatsoever.
Whitmer shot back on Twitter that Trump’s renewed attack on her over COVID-19 safety measures is “exactly the rhetoric that has put me, my family, and other government officials’ lives in danger while we try to save the lives of our fellow Americans.”
An army of early Democratic voters just might kill Trump's chance to sow chaos on election night
Donald Trump's months-long attacks on mail-in voting and systematic efforts to undermine the Postal Service may have ultimately hurt his chances to sow confusion in the days following the election and erroneously claim victory. It's a beautiful thing when someone as loathsome as Trump shoots themselves in the foot, so let's walk through the mechanics of it.
After months of listening to Trump's baseless charges of voter fraud while his administration simultaneously took a hatchet to the Postal Service, Democratic voters appear to have taken him seriously. Consequently, they have either returned their mail-in ballots at lightning speed or simply resolved their best option was voting early and in-person. Thus, the epic vote lines and wait times we are seeing in states like Georgia, North Carolina, and Texas.
“This is a completely different election than anything we’ve seen in the past,” McDonald told the Washington Post's Greg Sargent. “The numbers are off the charts,” he said, adding that the vast majority of early votes so far have still been by mail.
But beyond being on target for historic turnout nationwide, it also means that Trump's efforts appear to have backfired. Rather than suppressing voter enthusiasm, Trump has driven it sky-high. Plus, all those early votes will allow many states to get a jump on their vote counting rather than trying to process record numbers primarily on Election Day itself.
“That’s going to help elections officials,” McDonald said.
The Guardian: 'It is serious and intense': white supremacist domestic terror threat looms large in US
From the frequency of attacks to the scope of ambition, racist terror groups – encouraged by the president, are showing unparalleled activity in the modern era
On 6 October Chad Wolf, the acting secretary of homeland security, released his department’s annual assessment of violent threats to the nation. Analysts didn’t have to dig deep into the assessment to discover its alarming content.
In a foreword, Wolf wrote that he was “particularly concerned about white supremacist violent extremists who have been exceptionally lethal in their abhorrent, targeted attacks in recent years. [They] seek to force ideological change in the United States through violence, death, and destruction.”
Two days later, the FBI swooped. It arrested 13 rightwing extremists who had allegedly been plotting to carry out a range of attacks in Michigan, including the kidnapping of Democratic governor Gretchen Whitmer.
Later revelations revealed that a group of anti-government paramilitaries that included some of those arrested had also discussed kidnapping the governor of Virginia.
The double strike, just days apart, of the threat assessment and the Michigan plot arrests marked an important moment in America’s tortured history of racist terrorism. US authorities appeared not only to have woken up finally to the extent of the white supremacist threat but were actually doing something about it.
As the FBI director Christopher Wray told Congress in February, “racially and ethnically motivated violent extremists” have become the “primary source of ideologically-motivated lethal incidents” in the US. The danger overshadowed the jihadist threat that has dominated the security debate since 9/11.
Last year was the deadliest on record for domestic extremist violence since the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995. White supremacists were responsible for most of that bloodshed in 2019 – 39 out of 48 deaths, including 23 people who died at the hands of an anti-Hispanic racist in El Paso, Texas, and a Jewish worshipper murdered at Poway Synagogue in California.
New York Times: A man in Maryland was arrested and charged with threatening to kidnap and kill Biden and Harris.
A man in Maryland has been arrested on charges that he threatened to kidnap and kill Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic presidential nominee, and his running mate, Senator Kamala Harris, law enforcement officials said on Wednesday.
A criminal complaint filed by the Secret Service on Wednesday did not describe any steps taken by the man, identified as James Dale Reed, to carry out the alleged threat. It said that on Oct. 4, Mr. Reed approached a house in his hometown, Frederick, Md., northwest of Washington, that had Biden-Harris campaign signs in the yard and left a handwritten note that contained graphic threats against the candidates and their supporters.
The resident’s video doorbell had captured an image of the man who left the note, the complaint said.
“We are the ones with these scary guns, we are the ones your children have nightmares about,” the note read in part. Mr. Reed, 42, was arrested last Friday and is being held without bond in Frederick County, Md., according to court records. A spokeswoman for the Maryland Office of the Public Defender, which is representing Mr. Reed, declined to comment.
He provided a palm print and handwriting sample and acknowledged having written the letter, according to the complaint. He is charged with the federal offense of threatening a major candidate, which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison, and two violations of state law: threatening mass violence and voter intimidation
The complaint said that Mr. Reed was known to law enforcement for making a complaint against a person under Secret Service protection in 2014.
WFMY: Maryland man arrested, charged in threats to kidnap Biden, rape Harris
A Ring door camera captured the person who dropped the letter in front of the home, according to the affidavit.