Conservatives Stand Tall Vs. Racists After Charlottesville

(Quin Hillyer, Liberty Headlines) As the Left and the media uses the tragedy in Charlottesville to rail against conservatives in general, plenty of conservatives were issuing what can only be described as thoughtful, constructive reactions to that tragedy.

Tim Scott photo

Tim Scott Photo by Gage Skidmore (CC)

A Monday column in USA Today by Republican U.S. Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina is worth seeing at some length:

Our response to the events in Charlottesville, Va., should mirror our response to the murders at Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston. Condemnation of racism. Swift justice for a terrorist. And unity for the community that grieves. It starts with calling the attack in Charlottesville by its name. This was an act of domestic terror, perpetrated by a hate-filled person attacking his fellow citizens.

Our country has a motto that should ring true now as it has many times throughout our history: e pluribus unum, out of many, one. We are a country of many. And we are the greatest country the world has ever seen. My story is just one story indicative of a larger narrative. As I often say, my family went from cotton to Congress in just one generation. That’s because of the opportunity our nation provides to all its people….

Scott also wrote that the violent demonstrations by both sides are “not indicative of the vast majority of Americans,” and that “I choose to be on the side of America [as a whole]. That’s my team.”

Scott was far from the only conservative who stepped up to the plate.

Republican U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas said this: “White supremacists who claim to ‘take America back’ only betray their own ignorance of what makes America so special: our country’s founding recognition of the natural rights of all mankind and commitment to the defense of the rights of all Americans. These contemptible little men do not speak for what is just, noble, and best about America. They ought to face what they would deny their fellow citizens: the full extent of the law.”

Republican U.S. Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma said: “Our words must not create confusion. The supremacy of any race is abhorrent, unAmerican & should be condemned by everyone. Full stop.” Then, citing the truths in the Declaration of Independence by the American most associated with Charlottesville, Thomas Jefferson, Langford added: “We know these truths to be everlasting because we have seen the decency and greatness of our country.”

These are not just “moderates” that the media likes to cite as a counterpoint to supposedly evil conservatives; these are among the more conservative senators in Washington. Lankford’s conservative Heritage Action rating is 74 (the GOP average is just 56), and his American Conservative Union rating in 2015 was 96 percent.

Numerous conservative writers also weighed in with tough, and unambiguously appropriate, words. For example, Ben Shapiro (appearing in National Review) called out violent protesters on both the right and left and wrote that “if all Americans of good conscience won’t do some soul-searching and move to excise the evil in their midst, that evil will metastasize. There is a cancer in the body politic. We must cut it out, or be destroyed.”

These are not words excusing racists. These are words of serious-minded people, saying that there is a difference between peaceful protest and a riot, and there is a difference between pride in one’s heritage and hatred for other races.

But the establishment media won’t credit conservatives for such decency. In the most-discussed example of this, New York Times news writer (not supposed to be an opinion columnist) Eric Lipton openly mocked strong, thoughtful, anti-racist statements made by conservative Republican U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Marco Rubio of Florida (both Cuban-Americans). “Sorry to be cynical, but most of all Rubio and Ted Cruz to me seem mostly to be doing a tremendous job of posturing for 2020,” Lipton tweeted.

To which Cruz offered this riposte: “Gosh, you’re right,” Cruz sarcastically replied. “Because Nazis & the Klan have such love for Cuban-Americans. If only we worked for a paper that shilled for Stalin….”

In truth, conservatives long have opposed white supremacy. When former KKK leader David Duke first reached a runoff for a state House seat in Louisiana in 1989, just-retired President Ronald Reagan led numerous other conservatives in fiercely denouncing him. And when Duke made two bids to take over the Republican Party structure there in 1990 and 1991, it was the Christian Coalition that led the way organizationally both times in keeping his delegate count to well under 10 percent of the total.

Not that the establishment media has ever credited conservative Christians for that principled and effective effort.