Our friend John Becker writes on Facebook (reprinted here with permission):
SHAME -- The chants of "lock her up!" from the delegates and speakers at this week's Republican National Convention are disgraceful and baseless and chilling enough, but now we have a surrogate for and adviser to Donald Trump going even further: he's calling for Hillary Clinton's execution.
That's right, they're calling for the execution of their political opponents now. That's something that happens in dictatorships, not democracies.
Republican friends, let me be perfectly clear: if you do not immediately, explicitly, unequivocally, and loudly condemn and repudiate this hateful ugliness, you are tacitly condoning your party's dangerous slide into the evils of authoritarian fascism. Period.
There can be no hedging on this, no sitting on fences. How you choose to respond will reveal whose side you are on. I'll be watching.
So the fascist rally broadcast from Cleveland Monday night included plagiarized material from a 2008 Michelle Obama speech, music from Freddie Mercury, and America portrayed as a crime-ridden hellscape when crime is down and the economy has significantly improved over the last Republican administration. Even with the sound muted, Rudy Giuliani looked like a madman. The prospective First Lady, aside from being given stolen material to read, showed herself to have a weaker command of English than many of the other immigrants whom her husband attacks. The Democratic candidate was condemned over Benghazi despite nine investigations having found nothing on her, demonstrating again that we are in a post-factual age. What we did not see were policy proposals. Just appeals to the mob.
On Tuesday evening, I could not bear to un-mute my TV to hear what Jeff Sessions was saying in his nomination speech for Trump, but he was grinning like an idiot. One of Donald Trump's sons said, "He will be a great father to this nation." Pardon me, but that is not the job he is running for. One speaker said, "Experience counts." Who was he talking about? Certainly not the Republican presidential nominee.
MSNBC cut into a speech by the president of Standard Waterproofing (seriously, that is typical of their lineup) so Chris Matthews could interview Giuliani. What a painful choice that must have been. They should have interviewed someone with diarrhea from the norovirus that's going around the convention. That would have been more interesting.
Seriously, Uncle Ben last night linked Hillary Clinton to Lucifer. What a sad spectacle he has made of himself, wrecking a once-shining reputation. But keep talking, Doctor. Don't pivot to the general election. Keep the crazy on display.
The Tina Fey of 2016 has emerged, and it is our best girl, @LauraBenanti. Now I have something to look forward to during the rest of this campaign. Brava, Laura. You nailed it. My favorite moment is her squinting at the teleprompter.
Bravo to Jarrett Hill, who just improved his chances of a job offer to return to journalism. On a selfish note, I hope it is in broadcasting, considering how easy he is on the eyes.
Pamela Geller? Geert Wilders? Fine company you are keeping, Chris Barron.
I am appalled to say this, but I entirely agree with Jamie Kirchick, who by the way is not just a conservative, but an outspoken one.
The outgoing PM's wit was on full display this morning. Thanks to BBC News for highlights.
A fine performance by the former congressman at yesterday's disgraceful hearing on the anti-LGBT, so-called First Amendment Defense Act, which is simply a continued attack on gay families waged under a new (and false) banner.
A powerful speech by President Obama on another most painful occasion.
Minnesota police officer fatally shoots man during trafficstop https://t.co/VDInhewB9B— Washington Post (@washingtonpost) July 7, 2016
A 4-year-old girl comforts her distraught mother minutes after Philando Castile was murdered in front of them: "It's okay, Mommy.... It's okay, I'm here with you." Her mother, Lavish Reynolds, showed extraordinary composure, narrating the situation and disputing the officer's version of events, all while her blood-soaked boyfriend slumped beside her. The child will need lots of care and healing after what she witnessed, but she is a hero. The one ray of hope in this horror is her bravery and love. Her spirit is strong. At 8 pm this evening (July 7), there is a protest at the White House; I plan to go. This extrajudicial killing has been going on a long time. We have a long struggle ahead to put a stop to it.
Chelsea Manning violated the Espionage Act. She released vast numbers of documents in a reckless fashion. That being said, it does not justify abuse of a prisoner. Those who say that appropriate transgender healthcare should be withheld as punishment are damnably wrong. I hope that Manning will get the care that any prisoner deserves, as well as respect for her gender identity. Healthcare is a right; its denial is not a legitimate part of punishment.
Have you had occasion in your life to sob uncontrollably? Do you remember the raw grief and the sense of being lost, the free fall of despair? Were you 15 years old and facing TV cameras as Cameron Sterling was in Baton Rouge? His father Alton was shot multiple times point blank while already restrained. It is too awful for words; yet the heartbreaking video of Cameron's grief may be the only way to touch the humanity of some people. 61 years ago, Emmett Till's mother was faced with the awful decision of whether to have a closed casket or to open it and allow photographers to capture the horror. "I want them to see what they did to my son," she said. It is natural to want to grieve in private. Once again, a family reeling from the devastation of brutal injustice has found the courage to allow the cameras in. We are too good at distancing; we need to be confronted by the barbarity done in our name. But oh, for a child to have to bear that burden. I hope Cameron at least gets some sense of the countless strangers who longed to hold him as he shook. But he wants his father back, and we cannot give that to him. We must do more than cry in sympathy. We must make this stop.
Below, the horrific video of this point-blank killing of Alton Sterling while he was restrained. All cops are not monsters. But we have a terrible and recurring problem, and a big part of it is a refusal by people all along the chain of justice, including juries, to hold racist, murderous officers accountable. We have got to find a way to change this. But at least we can make some noise. Joan E. Biren writes: "Let the BATON ROUGE PD (@BRPD) know what you think. I did."
PHONE: (225) 389-2000
Note: After he was shot, Sterling was mortally wounded but not dead. He died subsequently.
Impressive performances by both President Obama and Secretary Clinton in their first campaign appearance together this year.
This is neither smart nor appropriate activism. I understand anger at injustice. I've been on the receiving end of "tone policing" since the moment I first spoke up decades ago. Even members of oppressed groups often dislike anyone rocking the boat, but rocking the boat is sometimes necessary. On the other hand, I've also gotten the "It's your turn to listen" aggression from people who neither know nor care that decades of listening and working in coalitions are reflected in my advocacy and writing. I will not be intimidated by or pander to ignorant and presumptuous people just because they make false assumptions and accusations about me. Reciprocity and mutual respect are key to productive alliances. Treating all white people or all police or all corporations as clueless or as irredeemable adversaries is poisonous. And it is not true. Our diversity includes diversity of opinion. You have to make your case, not just issue demands. One demand from the Toronto BLM activists was to exclude police floats or booths from future pride events. If you tried that in DC, where we are proud of our LGBT Liaison Unit, you would have a huge battle on your hands. Respect must be given to be received, and cannot be based on blackmail.
Naturally, Trump quickly said it's rigged. Yawn.
Hillary Clinton was hoarse from a heavy speaking schedule when she told this story about the letter George H.W. Bush left for her husband in the Oval Office in January 1993. It speaks to something essential that we have lost, and must get back.
My latest column in the Washington Blade looks at Britain's #Brexit debacle and its implications for the American presidential election. [Note: since I filed the article just before noon on Monday, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn suffered a no-confidence vote from his party members in Parliament, and #Brexit leader Boris Johnson said he would not be a candidate to replace David Cameron as Prime Minister and Tory Party leader. Also, Trump suffered further in polls, even as he was attacking the Chamber of Commerce.]
A love-fest all around. After Obama spoke, members of the Canadian Parliament chanted, "Four more years!"