Today, House Democrats are expected to vote on a resolution that condemns President Donald Trump’s tweets targeting Reps. Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Ayanna Pressley over racism.
While it falls short from calling Trump racist, the resolution refers to the president’s “racist comments” on social media, adding that his attitude “legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color.”
But before this unbinding document was put together, Rep. Nancy Pelosi was the one being accused of racism by colleague Ocasio-Cortez.
The freshman congresswoman from New York accused Pelosi of “singling out . . . newly elected women of color” for criticism. This comment prompted Trump to respond, calling Ocasio-Cortez’s comment a “disgrace.” And it was in that context that, on Sunday, Trump tweeted to, once again, attack those who accused the House speaker of racism, saying that those who were targeting Pelosi should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”
As explained by the Wall Street Journal, the focus on Trump might not be anything new. After all, he is known for making crass and inappropriate comments in public. But this resolution comes after “The Squad,” as the group of four congresswomen is known for, turned against the so-called moderate faction of their own party, showing that when it comes to scoring political points, accusing opponents of racism remains the go-to strategy of the socialist wing of the Democratic Party.
As this showdown plays out before our own eyes, we see a somewhat recoiled Pelosi coming out in support for the resolution, saying that she and her colleagues are “offended by what he said about our sisters — he says that about people every day, and they feel as hurt as we do about somebody in our family having this offense against them.” While there is no doubt that immigrants and children of immigrants may take offense in Trump’s comments, it’s clear that Pelosi is hanging by a thread. Will she be as willing to accuse herself of racism once Ocasio-Cortez and “The Squad” come after her?
Divide and Conquer
Pelosi never shied away from making racist comments involving white people. And even after being called out by members of her own party, she still didn’t apologize. With that in mind, it is safe to assume that when used as a tool by the Washington elite, racism isn’t really about the act of using collectivist assumptions to discredit an individual. Instead, politicians use the term to ignite the passions of their base and those who might not yet support them.
To bureaucrats, what matters is to stay relevant — and working on actual solutions to the problems we face as Americans pales in comparison to standing in unison against the man sitting in the Oval office.
As Ludwig von Mises said in Planning for Freedom, a bureaucrat’s goal is to swell the government’s payroll. And passionate racism accusations do just that, as they create the same kind of fearful and paranoid environment that President George W. Bush and his minions created following the 9/11 terrorist attack. It is in an environment thick with fear that politicians thrive, gathering support for their interventionist and tyrannical policies.
“The Squad” may not admit to this much, but being new to Washington doesn’t make them any more willing to stand for the little guy than those they attack. And as they continue to play politics like the old white men do, using racism to shape their rhetoric and, ultimately, their policies, we should never forget why they do the things they do.