Friday, September 18, 2015
The idea that President Obama is a Muslim (or some kind of "foreign") is not terribly new or especially rare, really. Donald Trump specifically began his version of serious political discourse with a terrifically silly quest to obtain President Obama's birth certificate and his school records. This singularly dumb conspiracy-theory nonsense which is not a little racist should have put a stake in The Donald when he became the punchline of the White House Correspondents' Dinner in 2011, coincidentally the same date that Seal Team Six took out Bin Laden. Looking like that big an ass almost made Trump irrelevant as a serious contender for 2012, but it nonetheless resulted in the candidates that year taking him seriously as a donor and an endorser. Funny how that happened.
Or maybe not that funny at all. Trump is a self-promoter and an entertainer. I've covered the degree to which some of his antics have been racialist. But as I've also covered, racism and anti-minority propaganda are not a joking matter, whether he's doing them as a "joke" or as a "straight shoot". We just saw a 14 year old Muslim kid arrested and denied access to his parents and legal assistance because he built a clock for a science project for crying out loud. Not to mention the open hostility that turns up in the national dialogue when Black Lives Matter gets discussed. Even though the extralegal assaults on people of color by law enforcement is a completely real thing. I've covered the way white thugs used Trump's name to justify their violence.
This is why I can't shrug when Donald Trump responds to a question regarding what to do about an overstated claim about the threat of Islamic people in the country that ends with "when can we get rid of them?" with "We are going to be looking at a lot of different things."
Different things? From the guy whose immigration stance already conjures up images of people being rounded up in boxcars for mass deportation? Where are we deporting the Muslims, even the US-born ones, to? Or is there something "different" and worse in store for Muslims?
I know this is just political talk to some people. But seriously--words mean things, and frankly, when I hear talk that sort of sounds like people getting rounded up because they are all assumed to be suspicious because it makes the slack-jawed haters happy, I think shit has gone too far. Maybe there's a joke you can make of "birther-curious". "Genocide-curious" just isn't funny to me. Appealing to hate isn't funny to me. This should be disqualifying. Full stop. This is not entertainment--it's sickness.