Reporter's Notebook

How Much Are Far-Left Activists Fueling Trump?
Show Description +

Readers debate the question. To join in, email hello@theatlantic.com.

Show None Newer Notes

How Much Are Far-Left Activists Fueling Trump? Cont'd

A reader dissents over the premise of this discussion thread:

I’m not going to go into whether or not Trump’s right to freedom of speech is being hampered by those who protested over the past weekend. What I want to address is the incredible short memory of journalists. Trump has been spewing violent rhetoric against a large number of people since he began his campaign. For months and months, individuals have either not been allowed in or have been escorted out if they are assumed to be disruptive (no matter whether they were or not). There was zero evidence that these people were encouraged by any movement on the left. Many were simply curious and most did not do anything anti Trump except be there.

Now, Trump comes to Chicago to a venue in a heavily Hispanic and African American neighborhood that is also home to many young college students and young professionals of all ethnicities. They decide to object to him. Now the media decides to ignore all the months of no movement from the left against Trump and claims that this is an organized movement by leftists. And who is arguing this? The Washington Times. Reason. What is the record of reliability of these two sources? I’d say very little given that they are nothing more than mouthpieces for the far right. Why on earth are you jumping on this bandwagon?

And frankly, why not admit that the real reason that there are more demonstrations is that a lot of people are getting very tired of a media that treats Trump with a respect that he doesn’t deserve and which also does not recognize the fact that there is little difference between the “sane and moderate” Republicans and Trump. Cruz is equally as bad as Trump, with an ego and personality and temperament to match. Rubio and Kasich are barely better. Their party created a space for a man who incites fear and spews hatred. That’s why they all say they will support him if he is nominated. That’s the sickness you should be examining, not looking for leftists behind the curtains and under the rug.

Another reader responds to my posting of the video of women reading misogynist quotes from Trump:

I agree with you about using Trump’s words against him. I actually think NBC should release all the raw footage from the various episodes of The Apprentice.

Another reader thinks through the question of how to most effectively protest Trump:

I’m increasingly convinced the way to countering Trump’s rise isn’t going to be through Trump. That method has clearly failed. Maybe the thing to do now is to start trying to reach Trump’s supporters.

That’s Chris Matthews during his narration of the long taping of last Friday’s violent scene at the cancelled Trump event in Chicago. “Look at this,” he says, “judge for yourself”:

A reader, Brendan Reid, addresses the part of our discussion about brainstorming the most effective ways to protest Trump, such as silent sit-ins or video campaigns that use Trump’s own words against him. Brendan has a creative suggestion:

Like all decent people, I’ve been scratching my head on how we stop the rise of Drumpf. Then I remembered this article from last year about how this nice little German town couldn’t get a bunch of goose-stepping neo-Nazis to stop holding their annual march in the town’s main street. The more the residents protested, the more wingnuts would come, planning their family vacations around the annual show of strength and the titillation of potential violence. Sound familiar?

So the protestors came up with a brilliant solution, a way to use the hate against the haters.