We must not bully people as the left does

I like Megyn Kelly, though I don't always agree with her.  I think that at times she has been unfair to Donald Trump (and at other times, right on the mark).  Listening to her interview for her new book, Settle for More, I was surprised to learn that she had received death threats because of her Twitter spat with Trump.

During their one-sided feud, Trump called Kelly a bimbo, a lightweight, a liar, crazy and sick; he urged a boycott against her show; his attorney retweeted a call to “gut" her. “Strange men turned up outside" her door, she wrote. “Death threats were common." She, her husband and their three children vacationed at Disney World with an armed bodyguard in tow.

This isn't right.  Even if Kelly is totally biased against Donald Trump, even if she was completely in the tank for Hillary Clinton, this is not the way to deal with her.  The way to deal with Kelly is to take her arguments and expose her bias, point by point.  You destroy the argument, not the person.

I don't believe that Donald Trump ordered his supporters to harass Kelly, and I don't think most Trump supporters were involved; but there is a dedicated minority who do this sort of threatening, bullying behavior, and it isn't an isolated incident.

When a union leader in Indiana was on the receiving end of a negative tweet from Donald Trump, he also received death threats.  Chuck Jones, president of the United Steelworkers Local 1999, criticized Donald Trump's remarks about Carrier, and Trump returned the favor with a mild tweet criticizing Jones, saying he should work harder for his members.  The tweet was not the problem, but the ensuing response was:

Half an hour after Trump tweeted about Jones on Wednesday, the union leader's phone began to ring and kept ringing, he said. One voice asked: What kind of car do you drive? Another said: We’re coming for you.

He wasn’t sure how these people found his number. 

“Nothing that says they’re gonna kill me, but, you know, you better keep your eye on your kids,” Jones said later on MSNBC. “We know what car you drive. Things along those lines.”

This is not what civilized people do.  We may not care about this today, because the ire is aimed at a hostile journalist, or a union thug, but what if this happens to someone we do care about in the future?

The solution for this is not for Trump to stop tweeting.  In some ways, I find it refreshing that he takes on his enemies, like the New York Times.

The solution is for people who publish calls for violence on social media against Trump opponents to be denounced.  If Trump supporters stay silent about this, they are little better than leftists who stayed silent when post-election mobs engaged in an orgy of violence; they are little better than black people who stay silent when Black Lives Matters commits violence in their name; and they are little better than Muslims who say nothing when radical Muslims commit murder.

Admittedly, it is not nearly the same scale – no Trump supporter has actually killed anyone (so far).  But the ugly side of the movement has the potential to tar Trump and his supporters, and make the media's job of painting Trump supporters as Neanderthals that much easier.  Thihs is why it needs to be denounced.

Ed Straker is the senior writer at NewsMachete.com.

I like Megyn Kelly, though I don't always agree with her.  I think that at times she has been unfair to Donald Trump (and at other times, right on the mark).  Listening to her interview for her new book, Settle for More, I was surprised to learn that she had received death threats because of her Twitter spat with Trump.

During their one-sided feud, Trump called Kelly a bimbo, a lightweight, a liar, crazy and sick; he urged a boycott against her show; his attorney retweeted a call to “gut" her. “Strange men turned up outside" her door, she wrote. “Death threats were common." She, her husband and their three children vacationed at Disney World with an armed bodyguard in tow.

This isn't right.  Even if Kelly is totally biased against Donald Trump, even if she was completely in the tank for Hillary Clinton, this is not the way to deal with her.  The way to deal with Kelly is to take her arguments and expose her bias, point by point.  You destroy the argument, not the person.

I don't believe that Donald Trump ordered his supporters to harass Kelly, and I don't think most Trump supporters were involved; but there is a dedicated minority who do this sort of threatening, bullying behavior, and it isn't an isolated incident.

When a union leader in Indiana was on the receiving end of a negative tweet from Donald Trump, he also received death threats.  Chuck Jones, president of the United Steelworkers Local 1999, criticized Donald Trump's remarks about Carrier, and Trump returned the favor with a mild tweet criticizing Jones, saying he should work harder for his members.  The tweet was not the problem, but the ensuing response was:

Half an hour after Trump tweeted about Jones on Wednesday, the union leader's phone began to ring and kept ringing, he said. One voice asked: What kind of car do you drive? Another said: We’re coming for you.

He wasn’t sure how these people found his number. 

“Nothing that says they’re gonna kill me, but, you know, you better keep your eye on your kids,” Jones said later on MSNBC. “We know what car you drive. Things along those lines.”

This is not what civilized people do.  We may not care about this today, because the ire is aimed at a hostile journalist, or a union thug, but what if this happens to someone we do care about in the future?

The solution for this is not for Trump to stop tweeting.  In some ways, I find it refreshing that he takes on his enemies, like the New York Times.

The solution is for people who publish calls for violence on social media against Trump opponents to be denounced.  If Trump supporters stay silent about this, they are little better than leftists who stayed silent when post-election mobs engaged in an orgy of violence; they are little better than black people who stay silent when Black Lives Matters commits violence in their name; and they are little better than Muslims who say nothing when radical Muslims commit murder.

Admittedly, it is not nearly the same scale – no Trump supporter has actually killed anyone (so far).  But the ugly side of the movement has the potential to tar Trump and his supporters, and make the media's job of painting Trump supporters as Neanderthals that much easier.  Thihs is why it needs to be denounced.

Ed Straker is the senior writer at NewsMachete.com.

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