What’s Wrong With This Picture Frame?

Why are reporters from the N.Y. Times and other media outlets using the term “left-wing” to describe people who oppose racists of all kinds, Nazis, anti-Semites, anti-LGBTQs, christian fascists, and other hate-mongers?

Isn’t it the American way to denounce these forms of inhumanity? Isn’t the American creed about pursuing liberty, justice, and happiness on the foundation of equality of opportunity and equal treatment under the law? This stuff is not “left-wing.” This stuff is mainstream America, at least in aspiration if not always in fact during U.S. history.

By making this a “left” and “right” contest, the media and public commentators are guilty of shallow analysis and buying in to the framing preferred by white supremacists and religious extremists who want this to be left-right, whatever those terms mean these days. The white nationalist power fanatics believe the Republican Party faithful will jump to support anything framed as anti-liberal, anti-left, anti-Obama, and even the tired accusation of “communist” that was heard in Charlottesville. They want this to be a political fight and not about human decency.

The divisions played out in the starkly different responses across the [Republican] party after Mr. Trump insisted that left-wing counterprotesters were as culpable as neo-Nazis and white supremacists for the bloodshed in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend. (N. Y. Times, 8-17-17)

2 Responses to What’s Wrong With This Picture Frame?

  1. Joe Boyle says:

    I’ll tell you why, Paul. Because it wasn’t Clintonesque moderate Democrats who went to Charlotte and battled the fascists in the streets. It was BLM and anarchists and communists and socialists and, on the moderate end of things, Bernie Sanders supporters. I know that mainstream Democrats felt quite opposed to the neo-Nazis, but they weren’t the ones in the streets. They weren’t the ones who fought back and put their bodies on the line to protect the prayer circle at the statue that the torch-wielding mob tried to attack. That brave woman who died was in the Wobblies.

    Credit where credit is due. It was left-wingers.

  2. PaulM says:

    Joe, I agree with your facts. What I was trying to say is that the struggle should be understood as above politics and fought on a higher humanitarian plane. By casting the struggle in political terms, I think it doesn’t do service to the deeper challenge. Yes, moderate Democrats and Independents and even reasonable registered Republicans should be out there pushing back against the hate groups. The involvement of the clergy is closer to what I’m trying to describe. The ministers and pastors and reverends and priests didn’t go to the street in Charlottesville wearing campaign buttons. They were there for for the morality of opposing hate-mongers. The evil in those hateful faces in Charlottesville is beyond politics even though many of the white-power marchers embrace Trump.