Maybe one day, if the world survives President Donald Trump, Kellyanne Conway will lose her blinders, re-watch her interviews, and see exactly why so many people are so angry.
During an appearance on "Fox & Friends" on Friday, Trump's counselor and former campaign manager called the president the "Healer in Chief" without a trace of irony and did little to soothe a seething nation. Instead, she stirred the pot by echoing the accusation of others in her party: America has a violence problem and it's because of liberals.
“You can oppose policies," she told guest host Pete Hegeseth. "But it’s done with such hateful, charged rhetoric that active resistance becomes armed resistance in the case of this lone gunman."
She talked about how Democrats need to look inside themselves and reflect on the hate they're propagating, a reasonable request except that it becomes provokingly hypocritical if Republicans are not expected to do the same. Trump's own rise to power ushered in increased violence from the right, a truth conservatives have been loathe to address, but must if they truly want liberals to hear what they have to say.
“If I were shot and killed tomorrow, half of Twitter would explode in applause and excitement,” she continued. “It’s terrible because, again, it’s one thing to say I disagree with you on health care repeal, or on taxes, or on your plan for national security, but you can’t attack people personally in a way and think that tragedies like this won’t happen.”
Again, fair points, but she knows who she is working for, right? During the 2016 election, Trump strongly insinuated that gun enthusiasts should assassinate his rival, Hillary Clinton. He also called Clinton a "nasty woman" and threatened to jail her. In a testament to the saying "like father, like son," Eric Trump called Democrats subhuman just last week.
If Conway wants to preach about hitting above the belt and keeping it professional, she should set up a pulpit in the White House.
Perhaps New York Times' reporter Glenn Thrush set up the overarching motif of this current discourse best in a tweet on Thursday morning.
Any debate about civility in politics begins with Trump. No one has degraded discourse more, while embracing the fringe. Fact, not opinion.— Glenn Thrush (@GlennThrush) June 15, 2017
Trump himself is the greatest threat to American politics and to any potential for the right and left to meet somewhere in the middle. His notoriety casts a shadow over every reasonable debate so that, even when both sides are are saying the same thing, they only hear political hypocrisy coming out of the other's mouth.
To be fair to the president though, Conway and others in the GOP are doing a pretty good job at destroying decency all on their own though.
“We don’t want to live in a police state because we can’t get control of people’s rhetoric,” she said at one point during the interview.
That sounds a little like a threat that America will become a fascist nation if people do not stop exercising their First Amendment rights.
If we're going to talk seriously about inflammatory rhetoric, Conway, let's start with yours.