Don’t Worry About the Backlash

There are plenty of places to eat in Lexington, Sarah.Robert E. Lee Hotel

From Chris Hayes:

Quite so. If you’re old enough—or maybe just read a book or two—you’ll remember that efforts to peaceably enforce civil rights in the 50s and 60s were invariably met with brutal terrorism and massive resistance by white folks. Nevertheless, there was considerable attention paid to the grim possibility that blacks might overreact and thus ruin everything. Eventually, urban riots gave conservatives the excuse they needed to declare that, in fact, it really was blacks who were at fault and it was finally time to restore a little law and order.

The lesson here is that conservatives will pull this “liberals have gone too far” schtick no matter what, and there will always be a few pundits of various stripes who will go along with it. This time around all it took was a trivial slight from a tiny restaurant located in deepest Virginia a few hundred feet from—the Robert E. Lee Hotel and the Stonewall Jackson House. But yeah, it’s the liberals who are being horrible.

That said, I’d at least recommend that everyone keep their eye on the family-separation ball here. That’s what kicked this off, and that’s why the Trump administration deserves the thrashing it’s getting. Forget the mylar blankets and the tents and all that, which merely provide conservatives with an opportunity to point out that Obama did it too. Stick like glue to the deliberate policy of separating families. That’s the truly odious policy and the one that’s unique to Donald Trump’s sense of public cruelty as a governing philosophy.

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.