Practicing tolerance in the Age of Trump

Mark writes:

“Obviously Jeff I was objecting not to your self promotion but yet another insinuation that anyone who didn’t vote the way you did is a racist.”

Mark goes on:

“Your hypocrisy is showing sir…. is everyone who voted for President Obama because he is black racist? Is everyone who voted for Hilary because she is a woman a female chauvinist ? Let’s just give the benefit of the doubt to everyone that participated in the election and assume they voted for the person they believed could best serve America.
Why is it that far left democrats always preach tolerance for everyone except for anyone who disagrees with them or offers a criticism of them? Awfully thin skinned there Jeff, thank you at least for not attempting to hide your hypocrisy.”

Jeff responds:

You impute a lot to me without burdening your argument with any evidence. Where did I ever say that “everyone” or most of the people who voted for Trump are “racist?”  I have never written or said any such thing.

In my post this morning did imply that Obama, like Beverly Snow in the 1830s, was the victim of a white backlash. When Donald Trump promotes the racist lie that Obama wasn’t born in American and a majority of Republican voters continue to believe it in the face of ALL the evidence, we can say we are witnessing a “white backlash.”

(And since relevant distinctions seem to often get lost in these conversations, just because someone espouses the racist “birther” lie does not mean that they are a racist.)

You wrongly interpreted my argument as a blanket accusation of racism against all Trump voters. To be absolutely clear, I have never said or believed or suggested that all or most of the people who voted for Trump are racist. (The fact that a majority of Republican voters believe the racist lie about Obama is not to imply that a majority of Trump voters are racists. Trump won many millions of votes from former Obama supporters. Those people are not racist and most of them do not espouse racist opinions.)

To say that the results of a 2016 election were powered by a white backlash is not the same as a blanket accusation of racism. When the KKK, an organization with a long history of racist terrorism and explicit advocacy of white supremacy, endorses the victorious candidate, then I can plausibly argue that we are talking about a white backlash. Something Trump said or did appealed to racists. Or maybe the KKK’s fulsome endorsement of him was based on something else. If so, please explain to the readers of JFK Facts (and, as a tolerant publisher, I promise to publish your explanation.)

As for tolerance, I’m proud of my record. I have posted some 1,700 posts in the blog in the past four years. Less than a dozen were critical of Trump and none of them called him a racist or focused on the racism of some of his supporters. Moreover, when a Trump supporter complained, I published his view and took his point. I pledged to keep partisan politics out of the blog. Over the same four years, I have approved 48,000 comments. Not a one was disqualified because I disagreed with the author. Can you tell me a JFK blog that is more tolerant? I didn’t think so.

As you know that I publish my critics all the time–including you. I have welcomed and published posts by Trump supporters. I didn’t have to publish or even elevate it to a prominent position. I did so because I’m a liberal. I believe in and practice tolerance. Just because I disagree strongly does not mean I am intolerant of your views. You and thousands of JFK readers are now, at this very minute, reading definitive proof to the contrary.

On issues related to JFK assassination, I have given respectful coverage (some say too respectful) to Trump supporter Roger Stone. I have engaged civilly with a wide variety of people who hold different opinions about the JFK assassination, including John McAdams and Gerald Posner and Howard Willens. Your claim that I am intolerant of differing opinions is, by any factual measure, nonsense.

As for your imputation of hypocrisy you offer no evidence to support it. That’s because you have none. The sooner you cease this ad hominem line of discourse, the sooner we can become friends.

Thanks for engaging.There are intolerant liberals out there but when you point a finger at me, I have to say, you got the wrong guy.

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