In response to reports that police found an explosive device at the homes of Barack Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton just one day after a similar device was found at the home of George Soros, People For the American Way President Michael Keegan issued the following statement:
“In recent years, right-wing media have relentlessly attacked Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and George Soros with every slur in the book. They’ve routinely described them as evil, even satanic, villains intent on destroying this country, and have trafficked in malicious, baseless claims that these three figures have participated in everything from child rape rings to the Holocaust. Figures like Alex Jones and online trolls have built an insane echo chamber of hate and misinformation online, while Fox News hosts have elevated irresponsible and dishonest conspiracy theories to national airwaves, and elected GOP officials like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz have engaged in and encouraged this rhetoric.
“We don’t know who is behind this most recent string of attempted bombings, but we do know that this kind of behavior is dangerous and dishonest. We all have an obligation to participate responsibly in our civic discourse, but this is not a ‘both sides’ issue. President Trump alone has praised Alex Jones who called the Sandy Hook shooting a hoax and opened the Oval Office to Ted Nugent who called President Obama a ‘subhuman mongrel’ and told him to ‘suck on my machine gun.’ Last week Trump praised a congressman for assaulting a reporter and made up ominous accusations about migrants looking for asylum in the United States. There is no analogue in the Democratic party, and responsible reporting needs to reflect that reality. The fact is that there’s something deeply wrong with the Right in this country at this moment.
“Finally, we shouldn’t pretend that this is the first violent and likely politically motivated attack we’ve seen against progressive figures. This incident should be evaluated within the larger trend that includes the violent brawls encouraged by the alt right and the brutal murder of Heather Heyer in Charlottesville.”
People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy. Learn more: https://www.pfaw.org.