By Elaine Magliaro
Willaim Saletan has an interesting article titled Whitewashing Terrorism over at Slate. In his article, Saletan claimed that “Republicans have firm rules for fighting terrorism—unless it’s committed by domestic racists.” He added that the Republican Party’s philosophy on fighting terrorism is clear. He provided a synopsis of it.
First, we must prioritize the fight. Second, we must challenge the teachings that motivate terror. Third, we must confront separatists who promote these ideas in our own country. Fourth, we must monitor networks that fund radicalization and violence.
Saletan said that following the above philosophy when it comes to dealing with terrorists does not apply when the terrorists happen to be white nationalists. He then pointed out examples to show how some of the Republican presidential candidates responded to last week’s massacre of nine black people in a church in Charleston by a domestic terrorist. Saletan claimed that those candidates set “aside the principles they normally apply to terrorism.” Saletan provided some examples to prove his point.
One of the Republican candidates that Saletan wrote about in his article was Lindsey Graham, the senator from South Carolina who has accused President Obama “of ignoring the doctrines that inspire Islamic jihadists.”
Graham had said, “Their way of life is motivated by religious teachings that require me and you to be killed, or enslaved, or converted…Their religious teachings compel them to come after us … If you don’t admit that, you can’t fight the war.”
Saletan said that Dylann Roof, the white supremacist who killed the nine people in the church in Charleston last week, had also been “inspired by doctrines of enmity, enslavement, and extermination.” Saletan added that Senator Graham didn’t appear “interested in these teachings.” He noted that Graham had told CNN, “We’re not going to give this guy an excuse about a book he might have read or a movie he watched or a song he listened to or a symbol out anywhere…It’s not the book, it’s not the movie, it’s not the flags, it’s him.”
On Monday, after ducking the Confederate flag question for days, Graham finally agreed it should be taken down. But he hasn’t changed his view that the flag and other Confederate symbols played no causal role: “The problems we have in South Carolina and throughout the world are not because of a movie or symbols. It’s because of what’s in people’s hearts.”
Click here to read William Saletan’s article Whitewashing Terrorism: Republicans have firm rules for fighting terrorism—unless it’s committed by domestic racists.