I know I’m slow in getting a post up on the Manhattan ISIS attack.  It’s been a busy couple of days and I’ve seen it discussed in the active open thread, but I think the subject deserves its own post to breathe.  Honestly, I’m not fully caught up on the details of the attack or the aftermath. What I’m most interested in is the aftermath bit.

It’s that Trump has fully embraced politicizing national tragedies.

It’s probably an exercise in WhatAboutIsm to say, but I’ve long since grudgingly accepted that an attempt to further a policy goal in response to mass murder from politicians and the media is normal in America nowadays.  To me, the descent started when Obama and the Democrats made a hard push for new gun control legislation after Sandy Hook.  They’ve tried it in every shooting since then, particularly over Las Vegas, and it usually starts within 30 minutes of the first casualty reports coming in.

What’s different about this instance, I suppose, is that it has that Trumpian aspect of making it about a specific person in a stunningly personal way.  The Democrats usually go after “the NRA” or might blame Trump or “Republicans” for creating a climate of intolerance or some junk.

This is the first time I’ve ever seen a president call out a specific politician by name and his support for a specific policy causing a specific incident.  That tweet took my breath away when I first saw it.  I don’t think it crosses the line though.  I mean, it should, but Democrats are going to have to live under the rules they’ve established for responding to these types of events.  It’s their own bad luck that the current Republican president is a master at applying them with a penchant for shitposting on Twitter.

That’s not to say I completely agree with Trump’s response on policy grounds, except for the end of whatever this “lottery” immigration from Third World shitholes is, as well as chain immigration.  That’s all great.  What I don’t like is the attempt to return us to 2002 rules for dealing with domestic terror suspects, whether they’re Islamic radicals or not.

The suspect should not be sent to Guantanamo Bay, given the Jose Padilla treatment, or put before a military tribunal.  The federal courts are functioning, there isn’t a state of emergency in New York, and law enforcement is perfectly capable of responding to any other emerging threats.  I don’t believe that the suspect has much information to offer, given how unsophisticated and badly conceived his plot was, so I don’t see any need to withhold his Miranda rights or subject him to any sort of enhanced interrogation.  Doing this wouldn’t accomplish anything good.

As we’ve seen with the last two domestic ISIS attacks (and I count Las Vegas; fuck you, FBI), we can’t deport our way out of this nor can we simply remove all of the means that maniacs might use to kill people.  An American citizen who commits a terrorist attack can’t be deported if he raises any red flags and an immigrant can acquire firearms through a straw purchaser.  The Democrats who politicize gun violence aren’t any more serious than the anti-immigrant Republicans are when it comes to actually solving the problem of dealing with politically or religiously inspired mass murder.

However, if I have to choose, I have to say that the policy I’d rather see advanced is the one that punishes lawbreaking immigrants, not law-abiding American citizens.  It’s infuriating that the Manhattan suspect wasn’t promptly deported immediately after the FBI interviewed him.  It’s an embarrassment when we have these “known wolves” fool law enforcement and successfully carry out attacks.  It’s unnecessary too.

If Trump wants to stop bringing in unskilled immigrants who contribute nothing to our country and immediately deport them and their families the moment there is even a whiff of radicalization and use this attack as the basis for it, I’m good with it.

Get them out of here so law enforcement can concentrate their limited resources on preventing domestic threats from American citizens such as the Las Vegas shooter.  There’s absolutely no good reason to allow anyone here on a temporary status to stay.  It’s risk-free and completely eliminates any threat they may potentially present.  Let’s focus on those threats we can’t simply remove.  And let’s find a way that law enforcement can focus on these threats without destroying any of our Constitutional rights in the process, please.

11 comments

  1. Three shot at a Wal-Mart in Colorado. My first suspicion is “workplace violence”, but we’ll see. The inevitable calls for more gun control are right on schedule though.

    We’re still in the Irresponsible Media Speculation Phase of this incident, so never mind that we don’t know what type of weapon was used or whether it was legally purchased or anything else.

  2. It wasn’t just Democrats, Republicans dragged their feet on the diversity visa program as well, although Chucky hasn’t done himself any favors by defending it.

    Also congratulations to the Houston Astros for the feel good moment we needed this week.

  3. Wow, the NFL players and Donald Trump actually agree on something, just not for the same reasons.

    They don’t feel like they can get justice and he blatantly said he doesn’t want it at all.

    Cant figure out why this Orange faced dipshit would have a problem with the federal legal system right now? LMAO!!

  4. It wasn’t just Democrats, Republicans dragged their feet on the diversity visa program as well, although Chucky hasn’t done himself any favors by defending it.

    Well, yeah. I mean, Republicans helped pass it and GW Bush signed it into law. It’s not like it’s all Schumer’s fault. I don’t think it matters that the GOP Congress in 2013 didn’t eliminate it. There was never any chance that they were going to pass any immigration bill that Obama would sign because they didn’t believe that he would deliver on enforcement.

    In any event, the suspect was already in the country in 2013, so it wouldn’t have mattered if they had ended the program then.

    I think it’s harsh for Trump to lay the blame for Manhattan on Schumer personally over an old law that he long ago co-sponsored and passed with bi-partisan support. I just bring it up because I’m not familiar with anything like this happening before.

  5. Yeah it was a bit much for Trump to go after Schumer like that, but thats is Trump giving the dems a taste of their own medicine.
    As for the justice system….sigh Both sides, when it suits them have gone off on how screwed up the system , which it is…

  6. As for the justice system….sigh Both sides, when it suits them have gone off on how screwed up the system , which it is…

    That’s not what he was bitching about. He was mad that our system of justice requires us to give due process rights to ISIS fighters. Trump was saying that the guy doesn’t deserve anything more than a quick court martial and a hanging on national television by the end of the week.

  7. Trump has never shown anything but contempt for the rule of law or due process. Little late to have an issue with that now. It was apparently a feature rather than a bug of his candidacy.

  8. OK, this is just perfect:

    I’d love it if his account was completely taken down for a week ONLY because Twitter’s stock value would probably drop by 50%,

  9. I mean, it should, but Democrats are going to have to live under the rules they’ve established for responding to these types of events. It’s their own bad luck that the current Republican president is a master at applying them with a penchant for shitposting on Twitter.

    This is the crux of it for me. I, for one, am opposed to politicizing tragedy, and think the 3-day moratorium on politicization ought to apply when Americans are killed. But I can’t get my knickers in a knot over Trump doing what the left does every. single. time. The political ground rules ought to apply evenly. Any reporter, comic, or leftist (but I repeat myself, thrice) who tweeted anything about gun control in the three days following Vegas has no legitimate grounds to be critical of Trump for acting similarly.

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