The rhetoric and level of hysterics that members of the left have displayed during debates and protests over the Trump Administration’s recent “zero tolerance” policy at the Southern Border have reached an almost unprecedented level. From comparing detention facilities that house illegal immigrants as they await trails or hearings to the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz, to Time Magazine’s egregious and misleading cover depicting President Trump towering over a crying illegal immigrant child (who, by the way, was not even separated from her parents), the left has engaged in the most vile type of political speech— character assassination— and hyperbole beyond comprehension.
When it comes to the First Amendment, conservatives advocate for strict adherence to the old adage, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Political speech is inherently uncomfortable for those who disagree and often involves impugning the character of opponents, but the left’s recent border fervor has spilled over from words to action.
The left has turned away from protest and towards harassment. The target of their ire? Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen.
During the height of the left’s outrage last week, protestors harassed the Secretary and her Chief of Staff as they ate dinner at a Mexican restaurant in Washington D.C., chanting “Shame!” over and over again. The divisive tactics didn’t stop there, however. This Friday, protestors gathered outside Nielsen’s home in Alexandria, Virginia. Protestors carried signs that called the Secretary a “child snatcher” and advocated for the dissolution of ICE. One protestor called the Secretary a “modern day Nazi” as she walked into her home. Protestors also played audio of crying children on speakers after Nielsen went inside.
Do the protestors have a right to say whatever they want, call the Secretary any name they wish, and play whatever misleading audio their hearts desire? Of course. Do conservatives have the right to call the protestors hypocrites who are poisoning the political discourse in this nation? You bet.
Many misconceptions have led to such a fever pitch level of rhetoric from the left. The first being that the Nielsen cannot do anything about the “zero-tolerance policy,” even if she wanted to.
The DHS Secretary is in fact, a secretary. She cannot change the policy that the Trump Administration has put out. That responsibility would come via executive order (and has), not from a decision by Nielsen. The second being that the Trump Administration’s “zero-tolerance policy” is responsible for family separations. The requirement that families detained at the Southern border be split comes not from a 2014 ruling by the 9th Circuit Court, the nations most left-leaning Federal Court.
Who was the President back in 2014? It wasn’t Donald Trump.
Where were the protestors in 2014 when children were being split up from their families in vastly larger numbers that now? Where were the hoards of media cameras and teary-eyed reporters as illegal immigrant children slept in tin foil blankets in detention centers as the Obamas vacationed at Martha’s Vineyard?
Conservatives can only be lead to believe that the media are once again exercising selective outrage in an attempt to hurt the President and the GOP as a whole, or went for years not knowing what was happening at the Southern border— only to find out after four years.
Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist Paper number one that, “We, upon many occasions, see wise and good men on the wrong as well as on the right side of questions of the first magnitude to society.” This powerful, short nugget of wisdom reminds us all to, as part of our shared Republic, never impugn the motives of our political opponents until we know for certain what they are. This is the exact opposite method protestors have utilized in expressing their disdain for the DHS Secretary.
Instead of demonstrating their political disagreements in a decent manner, the left has expressed their personal disgust with Kirstjen Nielsen in the vilest ways: harassment, character assassination, and misplaced anger. If the left truly intends to seek solutions, their bully tactics must stop. If they only intend to destroy people they disagree with and whip up anger, they can continue.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.