The Upside of the Leftist Turmoil: We’re Pushing Back

 

We already know how horribly the Left has behaved; their actions have become increasingly abhorrent over time. Their immorality is laid out for everyone to see. Their hypocrisy on the values they supposedly espouse—tolerance, fairness, non-judgment, support of women, justice—can no longer be ignored by the Right or denied by the Left (although I’m sure they will try).

The benefits of the recent chaos, though, should not be ignored, since they have played their cards. And we must find ways to minimize their impact or stop them in their tracks. The viciousness of their attacks on the Constitution, the Congress (senators and representatives) and their families must be addressed. Here are examples of their outrageous behavior:

  • Leaking information to defame
  • Harassing people and their families in public places
  • Staking out the homes of people
  • Lying to add more fuel to the fire
  • Making demands that should be discounted and ignored
  • Manipulating procedures and the law to meet their agenda

These are only examples; the complete list is a longer one.

So here are my questions:

How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way? Is there a legal means to threaten protestors, such as restraining orders or restrictions?

More important, how do we encourage members of Congress to stand up to their colleagues who think that the government is their playground and that their irresponsible demands should be met? When we deal with children, we seem to be able to use boundary management. When the Left acts like children, aren’t there ways we can do the same?

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  1. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way?

    Bikers do a great job of this with Westburro Church. Perhaps they are a good way. ;)

    • #1
  2. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way?

    Bikers do a great job of this with Westburro Church. Perhaps they are a good way. ;)

    That’s it! A HOG motorcycle rally circling the block with flags protesting the restaurant! I love it!

    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    I hope no one makes excuses about the price we pay for protecting free speech. There was an excellent podcast that essentially said we on the Right have made a terrible mistake in taking an “absolutist position” on free speech–and I’m not talking about the tired example of not calling out “fire” in a theater. The podcast actually deserves a post!

    • #3
  4. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way? Is there a legal means to threaten protestors, such as restraining orders or restrictions?

    Susan, I want to be careful here to distinguish between “vicious attacks” and ugly, intrusive, rude, disruptive, shouting confrontations. There is no place for physical violence or clear intimidation, and that should be prosecuted when it occurs.

    But most of what we’re seeing is something else, the ugly, vulgar screaming of frustrated and angry losers — losers in the literal sense of people who have lost an election they thought they’d win and, with it, the momentum they thought was permanently on their side. The left is not accustomed to losing and takes it poorly and without grace or dignity.

    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should have a website highlighting the left’s tantrums, full of pictures and videos of grass-roots politics done wrong.

    • #4
  5. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way? Is there a legal means to threaten protestors, such as restraining orders or restrictions?

    Susan, I want to be careful here to distinguish between “vicious attacks” and ugly, intrusive, rude, disruptive, shouting confrontations. There is no place for physical violence or clear intimidation, and that should be prosecuted when it occurs.

    But most of what we’re seeing is something else, the ugly, vulgar screaming of frustrated and angry losers — losers in the literal sense of people who have lost an election they thought they’d win and, with it, the momentum they thought was permanently on their side. The left is not accustomed to losing and takes it poorly and without grace or dignity.

    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should have a website highlighting the left’s tantrums, full of pictures and videos of grass-roots politics done wrong.

    Hank, I assumed (oops) that people would agree that vicious attacks can be verbal. I want in no way to see physical confrontation, but I’ve also seen protestors bumping physically against those they are protesting–when does that become assault? I think, too, that facilities that serve people should be called out when they don’t protect their patrons; at the very least they should send protestors outside and if they won’t go, call the police. When situations happen in the public sphere, there may not be much that can be done, but when I see families trying to leave their homes–kids, for example–it breaks my heart about the abuse. I think you and I are on the same page, though. I like the website idea; better yet, the RNC or other group of the Right should be filming these  actions and making ads for TV!

    • #5
  6. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    The problem is that’s ignoring “disturbing the peace” laws among others. We live in a world where thoroughly peaceful non-leftist protesters are more likely to get hit with disturbing the peace charges than are the type of thugs who went after Ted Cruz.

    Sessions should go after states and municipalities that fail to evenhandedly enforce the laws. 

    DC gets more interesting. Options are much stronger for Presidential action.

    • #6
  7. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    That is ultimately it – revenge comes through the ballot box.

    • #7
  8. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Speaking broadly, here’s what I see as the upside and downside of this kind of leftist rudeness.

    If we respond with moderation, make video of it and disseminate it widely, and characterize the left as angry, violent, and irresponsible, then I think we win with the voters: one side (ours) appears sober and responsible, the other childish and ugly. I think that’s an opportunity.

    If we push back in any way that escalates verbal confrontations into physical confrontations, either with police or counter-protesters, then we lose the ability to portray the asymmetry between left and right. When people see a confrontation that isn’t obviously one-sided, I think they grow disenchanted with the whole thing. The perfectly accurate claim that “they started it” falls on deaf ears: people will simply be disgusted and turn away, and an opportunity to educate the electorate is lost.

    I want to win. I think we should use our opponents’ own incivility against them.

    • #8
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    ctlaw (View Comment):
    We live in a world where thoroughly peaceful non-leftist protesters are more likely to get hit with disturbing the peace charges than are the type of thugs who went after Ted Cruz.

    This is an intriguing assessment, @ctlaw, but could you clarify?

    • #9
  10. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    If we push back in any way that escalates verbal confrontations into physical confrontations, either with police or counter-protesters, then we lose the ability to portray the asymmetry between left and right.

    Maybe. But I think it’s worth noting that the Left could use any excuse to blame someone else for causing them to be violent. They don’t need a legitimate reason. I like your moderate approach, but I’d like to see it done in a strategic way where the people are constantly reminded of who the Left really is. If it’s only done now and then, we won’t build momentum.

    • #10
  11. Chris O. Coolidge
    Chris O.
    @ChrisO

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I want to win. I think we should use our opponents’ own incivility against them.

    I agree with Henry. Just let them go on. We have this WalkAway phenomenon largely because of this behavior. It is always tempting to try and “help” such a thing, but people change their minds when they’re ready. The opinions are out there and no touch is light enough that it wouldn’t disrupt in some way.

    • #11
  12. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way? Is there a legal means to threaten protestors, such as restraining orders or restrictions?

    The people harrassed need to press assault charges.  Verbal threats are assault.

    The restaurants need to demand the harrassers be prosecuted for disturbing the peace.  If they don’t, then you might consider a peaceful physical protest outside, or an online protest.

    We should demand mayors and police commissioners order their police forces to protect our citizens and uphold the law.  Yes, some police forces have gotten orders to stand their ground instead of rushing in to stop looting, arson, destruction of property, or actual physical assault of people.  However, this failure should not be assigned to the cop on the street, but the superiors who demand inaction.  I’m not a cop, but if I saw people trying to overturn my patrol car and set it on fire, I’d have my billy club out, and my firearm ready (which is why I’m not a cop!).

    • #12
  13. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Stad (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn: How do we block protestors from initiating the vicious attacks on innocent people? For example, can we protest restaurants that don’t protect their Republican guests through social media? Can we call flash mobs to protest protestors who act in this way? Is there a legal means to threaten protestors, such as restraining orders or restrictions?

    The people harrassed need to press assault charges. Verbal threats are assault.

    The restaurants need to demand the harrassers be prosecuted for disturbing the peace. If they don’t, then you might consider a peaceful physical protest outside, or an online protest.

    We should demand mayors and police commissioners order their police forces to protect our citizens and uphold the law. Yes, some police forces have gotten orders to stand their ground instead of rushing in to stop looting, arson, destruction of property, or actual physical assault of people. However, this failure should not be assigned to the cop on the street, but the superiors who demand inaction. I’m not a cop, but if I saw people trying to overturn my patrol car and set it on fire, I’d have my billy club out, and my firearm ready (which is why I’m not a cop!).

    Thanks, @stad

    • #13
  14. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Also, what should we expect of our legislators? Maybe with Grassley as their example, they’ll be ready to be tougher .

    • #14
  15. Hartmann von Aue Member
    Hartmann von Aue
    @HartmannvonAue

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

     

    But most of what we’re seeing is something else, the ugly, vulgar screaming of frustrated and angry losers — losers in the literal sense of people who have lost an election they thought they’d win and, with it, the momentum they thought was permanently on their side. The left is not accustomed to losing and takes it poorly and without grace or dignity.

    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should have a website highlighting the left’s tantrums, full of pictures and videos of grass-roots politics done wrong.

    Susan: Great post. Henry: The party and its candidates should be doing this, especially in paid-for TV ads. We have what…five weeks in which to turn the election into a contest of the sane vs. the psychotic. Do it. 

    • #15
  16. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Also, what should we expect of our legislators? Maybe with Grassley as their example, they’ll be ready to be tougher .

    One solution might be to limit protesting to public places (and streets in front of private residences and businesses don’t count) far away from the people involved in what the protest is about.  There has to be a way to separate public life from private life.

    People should be secure in their homes (where have I heard that phrase before?), their places of business (both owned and patronized), their places of worship (including services such as funerals – take that, Westboro Baptist Church), and even courthouses if involved in a sensational trial.  The basic concept of a public protest is to voice your opinion; it should not be used to terrorize the subjects (or targets) involved in your protest (note, this also includes pro-life protesters at abortion clinics).

    I honestly worry about how I’d react if I saw a dozen angry protesters storming up my driveway because of a letter I wrote to the local newspaper . . .

    • #16
  17. Mim526 Member
    Mim526
    @Mim526

    Congress needs new rules requiring senators/representatives who are not running for re-election, and therefore not answerable to voters, to vacate committee positions.

    Verbal and printed abuse has gone way past free speech protections.  I like the HOG biker rally idea.  I think we’re at the point there also need to be steep financial penalties for slander, libel, public harassment – IOW, lawsuits.  I avoid lawsuits like the plague, but Kavanaugh probably could be a millionaire several times over for the unsubstantiated rot printed and said about him on the record.  I doubt he’ll file suit, but I would think he has several good cases.

    Above all, reserve bipartisanship for those who negotiate in good faith and keep their word, which leaves most Democrats out.  When you get majorities, get prepared with decent bills to reverse existing disastrous legislation and fix problems only the federal government is authorized/able to fix.  

    Message to Congress:  Figure out how to handle Trump.  Rule #1 – don’t use fake news media tactics, Trump will eat your lunch every time and non-Leftist Americans are the ones who suffer for your arrogant incompetence.  Ask your fifth grader how he gets along with the dominant kid in his class if you can’t figure out.

    Not much patience with stupid or silly GOP, coming off reading about Sasse’s pitiful Wednesday Senate floor show remarks.

    • #17
  18. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Mim526 (View Comment):
    Message to Congress: Figure out how to handle Trump.

    Better yet, figure out how to work with him.

    • #18
  19. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Mim526 (View Comment):
    I think we’re at the point there also need to be steep financial penalties for slander, libel, public harassment – IOW, lawsuits. I avoid lawsuits like the plague, but Kavanaugh probably could be a millionaire several times over for the unsubstantiated rot printed and said about him on the record. I doubt he’ll file suit, but I would think he has several good cases.

    Exactly. I’m not for lawsuits either, but there have to be consequences when people break the law, @mim526. Otherwise the inmates are running the asylum–and they’ll still be in charge if we don’t stop them.

    And this, too:

    Mim526 (View Comment):
    Message to Congress: Figure out how to handle Trump. Rule #1 – don’t use fake news media tactics, Trump will eat your lunch every time and non-Leftist Americans are the ones who suffer for your arrogant incompetence.

     

    • #19
  20. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should shut that behavior down for sure. Driving someone from dinner by yelling at them is a form of assault. Constant disruptions of events is an attack on free speech. 

    You are way, way off on this. 

    • #20
  21. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Stad (View Comment):
    The basic concept of a public protest is to voice your opinion; it should not be used to terrorize the subjects (or targets) involved in your protest (note, this also includes pro-life protesters at abortion clinics).

    This. 

     

    • #21
  22. The Great Adventure! Inactive
    The Great Adventure!
    @TheGreatAdventure

    Roughly once a month Antifa stages a “rally” in downtown Portland, and the Patriot Prayer hard right group shows up to counter “rally”. Or vice versa. These rallies inevitably devolve into riots. 

    Even the hipsters have now abandoned downtown. So I’m definitely not in favor of fighting fire with fire, so to speak. 

    • #22
  23. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    The Great Adventure! (View Comment):

    Roughly once a month Antifa stages a “rally” in downtown Portland, and the Patriot Prayer hard right group shows up to counter “rally”. Or vice versa. These rallies inevitably devolve into riots.

    Even the hipsters have now abandoned downtown. So I’m definitely not in favor of fighting fire with fire, so to speak.

    Good example. When the temperature gets too high you get spontaneous combustion!

    • #23
  24. Mim526 Member
    Mim526
    @Mim526

    Stad (View Comment):

    Mim526 (View Comment):
    Message to Congress: Figure out how to handle Trump.

    Better yet, figure out how to work with him.

    Yes.  Work with him, speak to him, speak about him all included in “handling” Trump.  Some GOP seem to view him as cross between P.T. Barnum and John Gotti-in-waiting.  Be good if they could at least start from a baseline of more ally than foe.  Congress stay in their Constitutional lane to get done what they’re supposed to do (immigration, fully address the Obamacare monstrosity); stop getting in WH mix with comments on ‘chaos’, leadership (style, lack of), etc. 

    • #24
  25. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Stad (View Comment):

    Mim526 (View Comment):
    Message to Congress: Figure out how to handle Trump.

    Better yet, figure out how to work with him.

    Bless you, sir.

    • #25
  26. Henry Racette Member
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should shut that behavior down for sure. Driving someone from dinner by yelling at them is a form of assault. Constant disruptions of events is an attack on free speech.

    You are way, way off on this.

    I’m going to respectfully disagree.

    Look, I’m not telling any establishment what it should do when something like this happens. That’s a private choice. And I’m not telling anyone that they should put up with violence or actual intimidation. I wouldn’t, and I don’t want anyone else to.

    But as soon as we start talking about organized responses — flash mobs, special laws — as a way of pushing back against obnoxious behavior, I think we’re missing an opportunity, as I tried to explain earlier.

    I think some people believe that, if we just push back, the left will back down. I think they’re mistaken: the left doesn’t mind the violence and the ugliness; nihilism and radicalism go hand in hand. I think we gain more of lasting value by showcasing their awfulness than by joining in.

     

    • #26
  27. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should shut that behavior down for sure. Driving someone from dinner by yelling at them is a form of assault. Constant disruptions of events is an attack on free speech.

    You are way, way off on this.

    I’m going to respectfully disagree.

    Look, I’m not telling any establishment what it should do when something like this happens. That’s a private choice. And I’m not telling anyone that they should put up with violence or actual intimidation. I wouldn’t, and I don’t want anyone else to.

    But as soon as we start talking about organized responses — flash mobs, special laws — as a way of pushing back against obnoxious behavior, I think we’re missing an opportunity, as I tried to explain earlier.

    I think some people believe that, if we just push back, the left will back down. I think they’re mistaken: the left doesn’t mind the violence and the ugliness; nihilism and radicalism go hand in hand. I think we gain more of lasting value by showcasing their awfulness than by joining in.

     

    So you don’t think yelling in someone’s face is harm?

    Wow. Just wow.

     

     

     

    • #27
  28. Ray Gunner Coolidge
    Ray Gunner
    @RayGunner

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    I don’t think we should try to stop the ugly shouting. I think we should leverage those instances: capture them on film and make them available to conservative sites that want to illustrate the contrast between left and right. I am confident that Americans, most of us, find this kind of behavior obnoxious and disgusting, and we don’t want to see it. So let’s make sure they see it.

    We should shut that behavior down for sure. Driving someone from dinner by yelling at them is a form of assault. Constant disruptions of events is an attack on free speech.

    You are way, way off on this.

    You are right about the yelling, BGS.  Yelling with the intent to instill fear is assault, and intentional infliction of emotional distress, and an attack on free speech and basic decency.

    But I’m with HR on how best to respond.  If Democratic office seekers want to present themselves to America’s swing voters (the ones who decide every election) as being AGAINST civility, and in favor of incivility, let’s help them propagate that image to as many voters as we can.  

    • #28
  29. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    So Henry, what laws on the books should we ignore in order to take the high ground?

    • #29
  30. ctlaw Coolidge
    ctlaw
    @ctlaw

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    I’m going to respectfully disagree.

    Look, I’m not telling any establishment what it should do when something like this happens. That’s a private choice.

    No. They historically have a high duty to protect their patrons.

    And I’m not telling anyone that they should put up with violence or actual intimidation. I wouldn’t, and I don’t want anyone else to.

    That’s exactly what you are telling people to do.

    But as soon as we start talking about organized responses — flash mobs, special laws — as a way of pushing back against obnoxious behavior, I think we’re missing an opportunity, as I tried to explain earlier.

    That’s a canard. Just start with enforcing the laws that would be enforced against non-leftists.

    I think some people believe that, if we just push back, the left will back down. I think they’re mistaken: the left doesn’t mind the violence and the ugliness; nihilism and radicalism go hand in hand. 

    Absurd at many levels. Start off with allowing long-established principles of self defense to play out. 3 or 4 rounds of 9mm would have ended this guy’s mayhem career and deterred others.

    Then prosecute. How many leftie college students would participate in a riot if they knew they were going to receive a felony conviction and spend time in prison? I’ll defer to @bossmongo on matters of riot control.

    I think we gain more of lasting value by showcasing their awfulness than by joining in.

    It’s a drug. They become addicted.

     

    • #30
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