By CLARENCE V. MCKEE
Before Democrats jump for joy and do high five’s celebrating the attempt by protesters to block Education Secretary Betsy DeVos from entering a District of Columbia middle school — amid reports that police are investigating whether or not she was assaulted — they had better realize how dangerous their leaders’ inciting language has become.
The vitriolic, flammable and often hateful rhetoric of Senate Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and his wannabe successor Massachusetts Sen.
Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass. (often within the immunity-providing walls of the U. S. Senate) is perilous! They can’t stoop low enough to delay the confirmation of President Trump’s cabinet nominees. They have no shame in accusing them of the worst kind of motives.
Most Americans hear such rhetoric and dismiss it as one of the reasons why they hold Congress in such low esteem. However, there are many on the radical left, and in the so called progressive movement, who might view this dialogue as a signal to take action against those on whom these Democrats, and others, are putting a target.
A justification to take to the streets and do whatever it takes, lawful or not, to fight the Trump agenda.
What kind of vitriolic and incendiary rhetoric am I referring to? Look no further than the U.S. Senate where
I served on the staffs of committees for two distinguished Republican senators. At that time, the Senate was a place of honor, respect, and collegiality.
Like much of today’s political discourse, even debate in the Senate has seen civility and decorum collapse.
Sens. Schumer and Warren are prime examples.
Senator Elizabeth Warren freely and unabashedly played the Democrats’ favorite card — the race card — invoking the name of Coretta Scott King during the Senate debate on the nomination of Jeff Sessions to be attorney general.
It was such a blatant racial exploitation ploy that the niece of Coretta Scott King and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and fellow Newsmax Insider, Dr. Alveda C. King, took her to task.
Warren didn’t stop there.
She said that if Sessions took “his racism, sexism, and bigotry to the Justice Department, he will hear from all of us,” as would Senators who voted to put his “radical hatred” into the Department.
And then there were the words of the poster boy for inflammatory rhetoric, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who said that when Sessions’ nomination passed the Senate “it turned my stomach.”
He also had a mouthful of meanness to hurl at Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, saying that she would “single-handedly decimate our public education system” and that Trump naming her to be secretary “should offend every single American man, woman, and child who has benefited from the public education system in this country . . . ”
As if this were not enough, he called Trump’s labor secretary nominee, Andy Puzder, an “enemy” of workers’ rights and “probably the most anti-worker nominee to the Department of Labor ever . . . ” He had similar unflattering words for Trump’s nominee for Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary, Representative Tom Price, R-Ga.
He said that the “war on seniors . . . begins when we confirm Rep. Price.”
How about those comments for giving a wink and a nod to violent protests often embedded with paid demonstrators with professionally made signs? In fact, many believe that there are some in the so-called progressive left movement — their financial supporters, and other “intolerants,” including some in the entertainment industry —who would relish in any harm coming to Trump’s appointees.
Just look at what happened to Betsy DeVos during the protest cited above, one reportedly organized by a local teacher’s union and including people carrying Black Lives Matter signs, resulting in her to having to be whisked away by security.
DeVos is committed to black students having equal educational opportunities and options.
Those who tried to prevent her from entering the school are reminiscent of demonstrators in the South in the 1950’s and the 1960’s — who tried to prevent black children from integrating schools.
If her opponents in the Senate were displeased with these actions, I have yet to see any statements or tweets condemning the activity.
I am sure that there are some, in and out of the Senate, who believe that “If we can’t stop them in the Senate, our allies will take care of them in the streets.”
The Betsy DeVos protests could just be the beginning as Democrats in Congress, city halls, their allies in the unions, and radical hooded protesters use whatever means they deem necessary to derail and delay the Trump agenda.
Someone is going to get hurt — or worse.
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida.