Republicans Scream Law and Order ‘till People Forget About COVID-19
by Omkar Ratnaparkhi
The Democratic National Convention (DNC) and the Republican National Convention (RNC) both made their cases to America’s electorate. The RNC took place from Monday, August 24th to Thursday, August 27th.
Pandemic? No. Looting and Rioting? Yes.
The RNC’s speaker lineup seemed more North Korean than American. Half of the featured speakers list had the same last name as the President, and independent fact checkers counted record-setting falsities. The DNC had no in-person crowds, but the RNC speeches from President Trump and Vice President Pence took place in front of crowds of hundreds of people who were not socially distanced or wearing masks. If someone were to go to sleep before the coronavirus pandemic and wake up during Trump’s speech and turn on their TV, they would probably not notice any difference by looking at the crowd.
Law and order was the central theme of the RNC. Despite Joe Biden having a centrist pro-police legislative record and receiving an endorsement speech from stop-and-frisk Czar Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the RNC painted Joe Biden as a lawless anarchist controlled by the radical left. Many images and videos of rioting and looting were shown in RNC videos. Ironically, these videos were not from Joe Biden and Barack Obama’s America but actually from Donald Trump’s America. The social unrest in the streets was not nearly this horrible under the Obama administration. One of the highlights of the law and order theme came on the first day of the RNC from the McCloskeys, the St. Louis couple who pointed a loaded handgun and AR-15 rifle at Black Lives Matter demonstrators after their gated community’s private road was marched upon. Although in previous interviews on Fox News and CNN Mark McCloskey claimed that he supports Black Lives Matter and peaceful protests that don’t trespass on private property, Patricia McCloskey made their true views clear at the RNC. In a speech laden with racial dog whistles, Patricia claimed “low-income families” would invade the suburbs and cause an increase in crime. This statement is false. Studies by universities on the effects of low-income housing developments have not shown a substantial increase in crime, but they have diversified communities that are otherwise mostly White.
Speeches of Interest Before Trump and Pence Keynotes
After Donald Trump Jr.’s speech with a strange eye color and his girlfriend Kimberley Guilfoyle’s speech that involved shrieking and screaming on stage, many Twitter users had reason to believe that cocaine was being snorted at the RNC. Other speeches at the RNC diametrically contradicted each other, such as when Senator Tom Cotton praised Trump’s hawkish foreign policy but Senator Rand Paul falsely claimed Trump had ended wars earlier in the convention. (Senator Cotton also supported President Trump wanting to send in the U.S. military to police protests despite condemnation of such actions by Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and other high ranking military officers.)
There were a few moments where Republicans tried to reach out to minorities and disillusioned Democrats. Allice Marie Johnson, sentenced to life without parole in 1996 for a non-violent drug crime, said President Trump gave her a second chance by pardonning her and described the emotional experience of seeing her grandchildren for the first time. Other speakers spoke about the First Step Act, which released 3,000 prisoners and reduced 2,000 sentences of non-violent felons who had records of good behavior, and slammed Vice President Biden and Senator Kamala Harris for their poor records on criminal justice reform. As a senator, Biden authored the crime bill signed by President Bill Clinton that led to the mass incarceration of many Black and Latino Americans for nonviolent drug crimes. When Harris was the attorney general of California, she incarcerated thousands of nonviolent marijuana offenders, despite claiming to be a “progressive” prosecutor.
Record-Setting Lies about the Coronavirus
Vice President Pence and President Trump were the keynote speakers of the final two nights. Both articulated a revisionist history about the administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, claiming its response was historic and that all resources were delivered on time. In reality, the United States leads the world for both cases and deaths (190,000 Americans dead so far) and has the highest deaths per capita of any Western developed nation. Resources were also almost always delivered late. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo held many news conferences during March and April in which he stated that New York was in dire need of further federal assistance. The Trump administration was slow to deliver ventilators, and Republican leaders in Washington dragged their feet on providing funding for purchasing supplies. Even today, in September, certain areas of the country have difficulty receiving coronavirus tests, and about one thousand Americans still die of COVID-19 each day. According to a report by Now This News, Trump’s speech embodied his presidency: the hour and ten minute long speech had one false statement every fifty-six seconds.