The president created quite an uproar when he referred to the current impeachment investigations in the House of Representatives by Democrats as a “lynching.”
Lynching is a barbaric, cruel, and horrific act often done by anonymous, hate-crazed mobs. The word is mostly associated with the killing of blacks in the old South, often by the Ku Klux Klan.
Dinesh D'Souza, in his book “Hillary’s America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party,” quotes historian Eric Foner who said the Klan was “the domestic terrorist arm of the Democratic Party.”
According to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), from 1882 through 1968, there were at least 4,743 lynchings in the United States. Of those people killed, 3,446 — or nearly 73% — were black. To a much lesser degree, lynching was also used against whites.
The NAACP lynching report cited above also states that only 1,297, or 27.3% of those lynched were white, many of whom for helping blacks, being anti-lynchin, and for domestic crimes.
What is not well known is that the largest reported mass lynching was of 11 Italians in New Orleans in 1891 after several had been acquitted by a jury for allegedly killing the police chief. This past April, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell apologized to their families, condemning anti-immigrant violence of all forms.
With that background, it is not difficult to understand how the term “lynching” would raise emotions, especially among blacks.
The problem in the Trump case is that much of the criticism of him for using the term by black and white Democrats reeks of hypocrisy and selective outrage. Just like the overuse of the word “racism” has taken away from its real meaning, politicizing “lynching” for political advantage cheapens what the term actually represents.
Many of those attacking Trump for using the word are sanctimonious hypocrites.
Senator Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., said using the term was “beyond disgraceful.” Sorry Senator, what is beyond disgraceful is how you passed yourself off as a minority to advance your academic career — and got little condemnation from black and Hispanic Democrat politicians, or the media.
It is also disgraceful, and hypocritical, for black politicians to politize the use of the word to appease Democrats when they were or are silent when they or white Democrats use the term.
For example, just look at members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) on this issue.
It’s Chair, Karen Bass, D-Ca., said lynching is “a horrific stain on our country’s history” and added that Trump’s tweet inaccurately compared a constitutional process of investigation to “the systematic brutal torture and murder of thousands of African Americans in this country. It’s unacceptable.”
Bass and her CBC, Trump-hating colleagues have obviously forgotten that in December 1998, during the floor debate ahead of the vote on whether Bill Clinton had lied before a federal grand jury, at least three members of the CBC referred to lynching as they criticized Republicans:
- Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.): “I will not vote for this lynching in the people’s House.”
- Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.): “What we are doing….is a political lynching."
- Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.): “This is about getting rid of the president of the United States…the whole idea is a lynch-mob mentality.”
And how could we forget one of the biggest racial hypocrites whom black Democrats seem to love and protect at every turn — former Vice President Joe Biden.
His thoughts on lynchings?
He condemned President Trump for using the word lynching, saying that impeachment is not lynching and that to make the comparison is “abhorrent” and “despicable."
The problem was, he had to apologize for doing virtually the same thing in 1998 when he called the GOP impeachment of Bill Clinton a "partisan lynching." As he said then: "Even if the president should be impeached, history is going to question whether or not this was just a partisan lynching.”
And then there was Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Ca., who also attacked Trump, tweeting that lynching is a reprehensible stain on this nation’s history. She apparently forgot that she used the term when actor Jussie Smollett said he was attacked in Chicago saying that the incident was an “attempted modern day lynching.”
Lynching was and is despicable. And so is selective criticism of those who use the word based on their politics.
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters. Read more of his reports — Go Here Now.
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