Tags: Charleston Shooting | Bill Kristol | John Heilemann | Confederate Flag

Bloomberg Editor: Kristol 'Trolled' Twitter Over Confederate Flag

Image: Bloomberg Editor: Kristol 'Trolled' Twitter Over Confederate Flag
Political analyst and commentator Bill Kristol. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 24 Jun 2015 01:31 PM

Conservative Bill Kristol "trolled" Twitter claiming that people on the left are attempting to eliminate Civil War history, Bloomberg managing editor John Heilemann charged Wednesday morning, accusing his fellow editor of making the comments out of "fun."

"This is the classic exercise of straw man building and knocking down," Heilemann told Kristol during a highly charged segment on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program in which both men were part of a morning panel. "I know it's fun for you. You are trolling by doing these things because no one on the left is suggesting what you're suggesting."

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Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard, took to Twitter Tuesday night to post a series of comments about the controversy concerning the Confederate flag after Amazon and other retailers said they were pulling the memorabilia off the market.

The flag controversy was rekindled after Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Pastor Clementa Pinckney and eight parishioners were shot to death during a Bible study last week.

Kristol's tweets included:
Followed by:
And:
And finally:

But on Wednesday, Kristol insisted that he has been for removing the Confederate flag in South Carolina's statehouse property for 15 years, when a referendum vote called for the flag to be removed from the Capitol property and relocated to a monument area.

He said he made the tweets because of what he calls the "cheap self-righteousness" of people where an issue is concerned.

"I dislike the kind of cheap self-righteousness especially of the left, or sometimes on the right these days, too, where they get into this frenzy of hatred," Kristol said. "It's not just the flag. Now we can't honor Robert E. Lee? What about the Confederate monument at Arlington? Is that inappropriate? What about the Confederate statues at Gettysburg?"

He continued that after the Civil War, there was a conscious effort to bring the country back together, and "Southerners were entitled to be proud of Robert E. Lee."

"They went out of their way to be respectful of the Confederate soldiers," Kristol said. "Isn't that one of the great stories? So, a little more of that spirit and a little less self- righteous moralism."

He continued to complain that the left "doesn't want to fight actual dictators today. They don't want to do anything about slavery in Iraq today, but it's easy to beat up on dead Confederates."

Washington Post journalist Jonathan Capehart, also on the "Morning Joe" panel, told Kristol he was "sort of dumbfounded" by Kristol's comments.

"We're talking about the reaction of the slaughter of nine people in a church, a historic African-American church and the conversation that erupted over seeing their murderer being pictured with a Confederate battle flag, who used that symbol of hate to sort of bask in his own hatred," Capehart said. "You're belittling the pain and anguish not only of those families of the nine who were killed but African-Americans who for decades have had to look at that flag and have it and see it flown over state capitals that are supposed to represent them, seeing it flown in public places that their tax dollars actually go to help pay for."

Capehart continued that while Kristol may be trying to be provocative, "to use what's happened in Charleston as a way to push whatever debate you're trying to have, I think is unfortunate."

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Conservative Bill Kristol "trolled" Twitter with claims that people on the left are attempting to eliminate Civil War history, Bloomberg managing editor John Heilemann charged Wednesday morning, accusing his fellow editor of making the comments out of "fun."
Charleston Shooting, Bill Kristol, John Heilemann, Confederate Flag
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2015-31-24
Wednesday, 24 Jun 2015 01:31 PM
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