Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters likes to rile up her base — she’s called repeatedly for President Trump’s impeachment, for example — and sometimes her rhetoric is downright amusing (if you’re a Republican anyway). But her call over the weekend for Americans to harass the Trump administration is nothing to laugh at.
Waters endorsed the ostracizing of Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who was recently driven out of a Mexican restaurant, and White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who was asked to leave by the owner of a restaurant in Lexington, minutes after sitting down with her family. Speaking at a rally against Trump’s policy decisions on families who cross the border illegally, Waters urged her supporters to do more of this kind of harassment.
You’ve had members of your cabinet that have been booted out of restaurants, who have had protestors taking up at their house, who are saying ‘No Peace, No Sleep.’ And so let’s stay the course. Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore anywhere.
She repeated the sentiment on MSNBC.
I have no sympathy for these people that are in this administration who, you know, know it’s wrong what they are doing on so many fronts but they tend to not want to confront this president or even leave. But these members of his cabinet who remain and try to defend him, they are not going to be able to go to a restaurant, they’re not going to be able to stop at a gas station, they’re not going to be able to shop in a department store. The people are gonna turn on them, they are gonna protest, they’re gonna absolutely harass them until they decide that they’re gonna tell the president ‘No, I can’t hang with you.’
Millions of Americans on both sides of the aisle were rightfully outraged and heartbroken by the separation of these migrant families, but Waters has crossed the line. Everyone has the right to peacefully protest and a restaurant owner has a right to refuse service in some circumstances. But a politician calling on the public to harass the administration is different.
Waters essentially believes top officials in the Trump administration should not be able to have a private life until they hand in their resignations. You heard her. If Jeff Sessions or Mike Pompeo or Nikki Haley or John Kelly are seen at a restaurant or at a store that a crowd should form and “push back.” She must be under the assumption that everyone who listens to her is of stable mind. Every politician has loons for supporters no matter what party they belong in.
It’s been barely a year since an anti-Trump psycho tried to assassinate GOP lawmakers on a baseball field. Has Waters forgotten that one of her colleagues, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, almost lost his life? The shooter had absorbed similarly extreme rhetoric from Democrats before he took action.
There will always be policy differences between the two parties, but when the left brands the right as evil, sociopaths may take action into their own hands like the one in Alexandria. Have we learned nothing from that?
For 18 months, Democrats have allowed the anti-Trump rhetoric occurring within their party to go largely unchecked, and since such animosity for the current presidency is seen as a motivator for the upcoming midterms, you can’t blame them. But Waters is single-handedly escalating tensions, and someone could get hurt.
Civility was once a cornerstone to American society. No matter our race, nationality, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or political affiliation, we were able to coexist and conduct a robust yet respectful dialogue. That may be coming to an abrupt end because of individuals like Maxine Waters.
If Democrats don’t condemn her inflammatory rhetoric now, there could be a body count.