It’s been a dark week for Americans – really for just about everyone in this hemisphere – and our wonderful politicians are doing everything in their power to pick at the scabs and make things worse.
With men, women and children still bleeding on the floor of a Texas Wal-Mart and the streets of Dayton, we saw a disgusting display from presidential candidates, talking heads and politicians across the nation as they used tragedy to push their political agendas.
Of the most egregious was Texas Rep. Joaquin Castro Tweeting out the names of 44 people in San Antonio who’d contributed to President Trump, also naming their workplaces. Three days after 22 people were gunned down in El Paso, Castro posted this info on Twitter, saying “Their contributions are fueling a campaign of hate that labels Hispanic immigrants as ‘invaders.’”
The names and info were publicly available, sure, but Castro is an elected official and he has a responsibility to act with a little more dignity than these gutter-fighting, culture-war style tactics.
Egregious, but not the only instance of people politicizing a tragedy.
President Trump really had me hopeful to start. His address following the shootings, specifically condemning all the evil of white supremacy that fueled one of them, was fantastic. It was a unifying message. It was what Americans needed to hear. For a split second, I felt like I’d been whisked back 10 or so years in time to a point where everyone didn’t hate each other.
Then as the president got onto Air Force One to visit the victims of the mass shootings, he started Tweeting out attacks on political opponents and the media.
Really undercuts that strong, unifying message.
I’ve said before, the president needs to be above some of these petty antics. Yes, half the politicians in Washington were smearing him as the literal cause of the El Paso shooting, and news outlets were having a field day doing the same, but there’s a time and a place for response.
Trump throwing out petty attacks and the absurd flexing being done for the sake of the president’s ego by the White House Twitter account were remarkably tone-deaf, and did wonders to remind me just how divided our political system and country are.
There are few things more revolting than using the deaths of humans to advance yourself, a cause or your narrative politically; it is about as cynical and amoral as you can get.
Coming right out of the gate with personal attacks against political opponents and lumping their supporters in as responsible for those dead people is beyond the pale.
For the upcoming elections, I’ve written off every candidate that did this, bar none, and you’ll have a heck of a time changing my mind about those that acted so foolishly. We have enough moral deficiencies in Washington D.C. We don’t need cynical opportunists in the White House.
We need leaders that will be strong in the face of terror and hatred, not those that give into their own rage or manipulate the hearts of Americans for political gain.