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Time to take things down a notch

By Staff | Sep 9, 2020

To the editor:

It was during the Trump administration when the anti-racism protestor in Charlottesville was attempting to disperse; as per the police instruction, and was mowed down by a rental car? Can you remember that far back? Now the GOP convention invites Americans to believe “you won’t be safe” if Biden is elected. Well, heck, the electoral college picked Trump four years ago now. Are we, any of us, feeling safer? Black Americans not on the GOP podium and payroll, are not generally reporting they feel safer with Trump in office. Could his, let’s call it “style of leadership,” explain why fewer protestors are willing to follow police instruction to disperse?

What did Donald Trump say when told that a (Neo Nazi) counter demonstrator in Charlottesville had killed a woman leaving a peaceful protest opposing racism? “There are very fine people on both sides.” Clearly the Donald’s impulse to foment fear coupled with do nothing legislative impulse has not improved the situation in the cities where tragedy has struck. This is not (yet) Biden’s America. Some buildings are burning, that were not torched under the Obama/Biden administration. We now have a president who never saw a flame he didn’t feel a need to throw gas on. Do we want four more years of a guy who offers only the skill of conflict escalation, and considers this a positive attribute?

What would Biden and the Democrats do differently? Look at the legislation proposed and passed by Democrats in Congress following George Floyd’s murder by a police office (who was fired and arrested only AFTER some buildings got damaged). (Democratic) Senator Corey Booker proposed Democratic legislation this year: Give the police more money for training, gathering of statistics, urge the police to refrain “unless necessary” from using choke holds and outlaw lynching. The Republican senators killed the bill. (You need the GOP-controlled Senate and the Democratic Congress to pass legislation.)

To believe the Democratic impulse now would be to defund the police seems disingenuous. If there is a trope with a ring of truth to it, it is that the Democratic impulse is to throw money at the problem. The legislation the Democrats proposed was more money for the police nationwide. Biden has repeatedly said he would not support defunding police departments.

But what would Biden do?

Let’s look back: We have seen Vice President Biden drink beer in the Rose Garden with the Black professor and the (white) cop who arrested him for refusing to follow a lawful order to identify himself after setting off his own home burglar alarm. Biden did not call out untrained white “militias” to inflame protestors and we didn’t see any buildings burn. Biden had a beer with the two and sorted the misunderstanding. During the Obama/Biden administration,what did they do for calming racial tension? When Trayvon Martin was shot by a vigilante in Florida, President Obama offered words of calm. That administration ponied up funds for police body cameras and, when false claims of police misconduct plummeted, some of the savings recouped the cost to taxpayers.

Biden is not as flamboyant as Trump.

Granted.

But if you genuinely don’t want your cities to burn? Dial it down a notch: lose the tweeter in Chief pyrotechnics,

Ellen Starbird

Cape Coral