*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
Throughout this long, tiresome and bizarre campaign season Donald Trump has managed to insult and criticize any- and everyone not supporting or associated with Donald Trump; that is typically what happens with a megalomaniac. This week, it looks like Trump actually got around to criticizing the last demographic in America and it was bad enough that he opened his mouth at all, but to criticize America’s law enforcement community as “afraid to do anything” is going too far and rivals calling veterans who fought for America in the Iraq War “thieves.” But this is Donald Trump and a day can’t pass without him condemning some group whether it’s to earn points from his faithful acolytes or impress his own sense of self-importance on the American people.
Of course the mainstream media failed to report that on Fox and Friends on Monday, Donald Trump weighed in on New York’s law enforcement officers, and by extension all American law enforcement professionals, by claiming they are “afraid” to do their jobs. The big-time wrestling celebrity said:
“You know, our police are amazing. Our local police, they know who a lot of these people are. They’re afraid to do anything about it because they don’t want to be accused of profiling, and they don’t want to be accused of all sorts of things.”
Now, that first ‘bit’ about “police are amazing” ranks right up there with his remark and assumption that “some” Hispanics “are ‘probably’ good people” in the same breath he accused all of them of being rapists, murderers, and drug pushers. The rest of his condemnation, and it is a condemnation, about law enforcement being “afraid to do anything” for fear of being accused of “profiling” is sheer bovine excrement. This is particularly true when the same cops he criticized as being “afraid to do anything” confronted, engaged in gunfire with, and apprehended the Chelsea bombing suspect in Linden New Jersey, and they did it without calling in a battalion of militarized reinforcements.
Linden Mayor Derek Armstead gave a brief accounting of the gunfight and apprehension that certainly refutes Trump’s assertion that police are afraid of anything for fear of being accused of profiling. Mayor Armstead said,
“At approximately 10:30 this morning, the owner of one of the establishments in town reported that there was an individual sleeping in his hallway. One of our police officers went to investigate, to wake him up, and realized that he was the suspect that had been sought in the other bombings that had occurred prior…He realized it was the suspect, and within moments, the suspect had fired on him. And thank god that he had his vest on. I think that saved his life.”
Setting aside that department regulations, not god, was responsible for the officer wearing his vest, this incident is typical of law enforcement officers not being afraid to do their jobs and putting public safety far ahead of any concerns about being accused of “profiling.” However, Trump wasn’t only questioning and criticizing law enforcement’s courage in the face of serious danger, he was sending a signal to his malcontent followers that “real police” would “know who these people (all Muslims) are” and would not be “afraid to do anything about it;” like gunning them down for being ‘suspected’ Muslims. No doubt Trump praises the rogue officers that shoot unarmed African Americans because they share Trump’s sensibilities and “know who these people (African Americans) are” and shoot them dead because they are not afraid of being accused of “profiling those people.”
Trump couldn’t even keep his stories straight about the courage or efficacy of police over a nine-minute period. In one Tweet he said,
“Great job once again by law enforcement. We are proud of them and should embrace them – without them, we don’t have a country.”
But that phony pride quickly turned to dire disappointment when Trump Tweeted,
“Once again someone we were told is ok turns out to be a terrorist who wants to destroy our country and its people – how did he get thru (sic) system?”
First, the alleged bomber “got through the system” because he arrived in America when he was seven years old and was not on a terror watch list over the past 21 years; not because law enforcement or national security is lax, or because they were “afraid” to do their due diligence as police officers out of a fear of being accused of profiling a second or third grade child. And, this “someone we were told is okay” is a not-so-subtle reference to all American citizens adhering to Islam that Trump and his followers are certain are not okay. Donald Trump or his followers can never accept, and would put an end to, the idea that this is America and according to the criminal justice system everyone is “okay” until proven otherwise in a court of law; not because Donald Trump and his bigoted supporters say they are not okay based on their religion, skin pigmentation, or cultural heritage.
It is nearly impossible to think of any group of Americans Donald Trump hasn’t insulted; including his own supporters he loves because they are “uneducated” (Read really stupid). One thought Trump assailing members of the military fighting a war in Iraq as thieves was an atrocity, and was nearly as horrid as attacking the Muslim parents of a fallen war hero. But even implying that America’s law enforcement community is afraid of anything is just beyond the pale. Just as during the terror attacks on 9/11 and the horrific ambush of police in Houston, while civilians were fleeing for their very lives, first responders and law enforcement were rushing directly toward the danger.
Trump’s comments are a portent of what he would impose on Americans given half a chance; like deporting millions of peaceful American Muslims and the Chelsea bomber when he was just a child. Trump and his ilk, like his kind of fascist police, certainly would have known that a second-grader was one of “those people” Trump knows are terrorists. Fortunately for Americans, the great preponderance of law enforcement officials whether cops on the beat or high-ranking officials are not like Donald Trump and are not afraid of anything; including protecting and serving without fear of being accused of profiling.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.