Time for our monthly scolding.
It’s amazing to see a politician who urged his supporters to argue with others and get in their faces, who told people to vote for revenge and whose party called Republicans hostage takers and terrorists suddenly concerned about political rhetoric.
The Associated Press reports:
Obama Dismayed by Vulgarity, Violence of Campaign
President Barack Obama said Tuesday he was dismayed by “vulgar and divisive rhetoric” directed at women and minorities as well as the violence that has occurred in the 2016 presidential campaign, a swipe at Republican front-runner Donald Trump that also served as a challenge to other political leaders to speak out and set a better example.
“The longer that we allow the political rhetoric of late to continue and the longer that we tacitly accept it, we create a permission structure that allows the animosity in one corner of our politics to infect our broader society,” Obama said. “And animosity breeds animosity.”
Without mentioning the GOP candidate by name, Obama used a unity luncheon at the Capitol to express his concern with the nation’s political discourse and the protests that have escalated to attacks at the Trump rallies. The candidate has spoken of barring Muslims from entering the country and deporting immigrants living here illegally.
Obama pleaded for civility and said political leaders can either condone “this race to the bottom” or reject it.
“We have heard vulgar and divisive rhetoric aimed at women and minorities, and Americans that don’t look like us or pray like us or vote like we do,” Obama said at the annual Friends of Ireland luncheon.
Obama also emphasized that efforts to shut down free speech were “misguided.” Protesters forced Trump to cancel a rally in Chicago on Friday. He said he rejects “any effort to spread fear or encourage violence or shut people down while they are trying to speak.”
Here’s a CNN video of Obama’s remarks:
Obama loves nothing more than to pretend to be the reasonable adult in the room but his contribution to the anti-free speech movement of the left and on college campuses is undeniable.
It is also unfair of him to blame everyone for the current climate in our political environment. Conservatives are not disrupting Clinton or Sanders rallies. That behavior is only coming from one side.
Perhaps if Obama cared about divisiveness and civility two, four or eight years ago, we wouldn’t be in this place now.
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