Don’t want to feel bad about being in a coalition with white nationalists who helped elect Trump? Make up a violent “alt-left.” Both sides, you see!

Except…..nobody made one up. There actually IS one. (And has been, for years, even prior to the 60’s. They’re just getting additional press (and funding) due to Trump, which explains the change in their profile).

Don’t want to own up to how a birther conspiracy theorist like Trump fans the flames of racism? Call Obama divisive. Both sides! Nailed it!

Except…..he WAS divisive. Cambridge Orlando Ferguson Baltimore. All cases where Obama sided with one of the competing narratives before all the facts were in. It was not missed that he consistently chose the side of his racial identity.

Don’t want to deal with the vile racism that’s found a welcoming home in today’s Republican Party? Call civil rights activists racists, too! Both sides! Whee!

Hmmmmm. This one is not quite as intellectually dishonest as your first two examples — it actually has some truth to it.

There has been an attempt to redefine the term “racism” by the right to “an opinion, position, or policy that elevates or diminishes one racial group at the expense of another”, a definition which removes negative elements such as prejudice and discrimination. By that definition, racial identity politics, which the right (for good reason) believes is divisive, becomes “racism”.

I personally don’t care for people redefining words for political reasons (another thing that, unfortunately, “both sides” do, but let’s not digress) and I therefore don’t view identity politics as racist. However, to engage in close-word-parsing obfuscates the real debate here: conservatism, like liberalism, as a matter of principle, is not racist, and thus conservatives don’t like the term being used as an rhetorical club to beat them with. Conservatives believe in equality of opportunity as far as public policy is concerned; leftists often demand equality of outcome, which is anti-democratic.

(Looks down at your list) Lessee…..healthcare, gerrymandering, SCOTUS seat, more racism…….well, you’re back to intellectually dishonest argumentation. Bored now.

Sorry, but sometimes “both-sides-ism” is absolutely accurate. One has to look at each and every time the dichotomy is expressed, to see if it, in that particular case, is true or false.

The one side that we need to be on — the one thing that has to unite good people in the fights ahead — is a commitment to protecting and defending democracy.

Now, we have a anti-democratic cancer in our politics. It’s growing.

I quite agree. What we don’t agree on is where that anti-democratic movement is coming from.

Defending Nazi free speech rights — Nazis and their allies do have free speech rights. What they don’t have is the right to enter liberal cities like Berkeley and Charlottesville to commit acts of violence in the name of recruiting more people to their cause.

Hm………

First off, I highly suggest the term “Nazi” be left alone. You’re confusing people. Nazism is a form of fascism, which is a governing philosophy that uses racism and nationalism to gain power, but includes a lot of governance ideas that the current crop of white supremacists do NOT hold, especially in the area of other personal freedoms and economics.

It is thus inaccurate to call them “Nazis” — — better to call them white supremacists and be done with it.

On to point 2. It is settled law, thankfully, that anyone has a right to speak or demonstrate in public spaces. Even if the speech is vile. The community does have the right to issue or deny permits based on public safety……but the onus of proof that the issuance of the permit is unsafe is on the city, not the group.

That said, NOBODY has the right to commit acts of violence. That’s another matter entirely, and nobody is or should be defending THAT. You seem to assume that violence, vandalism, and speech are the same thing, which of course they are not.

White supremacists love when liberals defend their free speech rights; it elevates their ideology to the level of Constitutional discourse.

HUH? There is no such thing as “Constitutional discourse”. There is only free speech. Stop inventing straw men. Free speech does not elevate an ideology. Saying that is does is akin to saying that because a rapist is Constitutionally entitled to legal representation, that rape is a constitutionally protected activity. Utter nonsense.

Let’s be clear here. If you believe that the government should be permitted to classify a particular topic as “outside the bounds of free speech law” then you’ve become the authoritarian. Remember, the reasoning Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and the Middle Eastern dictators all gave and still give for prohibiting free speech is because of the risk of “social disruption”. You’re deciding that a safe society is more important than a free society. Historically, what you suggest does not end well, because once government takes a right, they (again historically) don’t stop there.

Practically speaking, the best response to arguments about free speech is to help others understand how white supremacists use free speech arguments as cover for their horrible worldview. We have to critically examine the speech at hand: it’s hate speech and it’s the basis for creating policies that involve violently expelling millions of our neighbors from the country and denying other people the right to vote. It is speech calling for the death of democracy.

Well :-)…..you can’t hear their horrible worldview unless you let them speak, now, can you? :-)

Written by

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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