Sen. Tuberville's 'White Supremacy' Comments Aren't Actually as Bad as Advertised

Breathless reporting by the media should always come with a healthy dose of skepticism. If they’re hyperventilating or overly focused on something, then the likelihood that they’re over-dramatizing something about the story is very high. The furor around Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville and his comments on “white supremacy” seems to be one of those stories.

I first got wind of the story on Wednesday morning when I noticed Tuberville’s name on a few headlines. If a news organization like The Hill repeats a name several times in rapid succession on its front page, you can bet that the media has a new favorite weapon they can use against Republicans. According to the articles, Tuberville had made some comments about being good with white supremacists in the military, and his comments were so bad that both Sen. Chuck Schumer and Sen. Mitch McConnell had spoken up, denouncing Tuberville.

“White supremacy is simply unacceptable in the military and in our whole country,” McConnell told reporters.

“The Senator from Alabama is wrong, wrong, wrong,” Schumer said. “The definition of white nationalism is not a matter of opinion.”

“For the Senator from Alabama to obscure the racist nature of white nationalism is indeed very, very dangerous,” Schumer continued. “He is fanning the flames of bigotry and intolerance.”

So what did Tuberville say? According to The Hill, his comments do look pretty bad on the surface. He said that he simply calls “white nationalists” in the military “Americans.” He went on with CNN’s Kaitlan Collins to further elaborate on his comments:

Tuberville sought to draw a distinction between white nationalism and racism, which he said he is against. He said white nationalist is a buzzword that liberals slap on their political opponents and said he didn’t necessarily want to throw people who identify as white nationalists out of the military.

He said it’s “just a cover word for the Democrats now where they can use it to try to make people mad across the country,” he said.

“I’m for … whoever wants to be in the military to fight for this country,” he said.

Digging a little deeper, he further clarified his comments to Julie Tsirkin of NBC News where his meaning becomes a little more clear. To her credit, she seemed to understand where Tuberville was going and drew out the real meaning behind what he was trying to say.

“So what you’re saying is Democrats are painting Trump supporters as white nationalists but that’s not what they are?” she asked.

Tuberville elaborated that Trump supporters are getting called white nationalists all the time, but they aren’t white nationalists. He said that “every day on the floor” Trump supporters are painted with that white nationalist brush. According to Tuberville, the military’s recruitment efforts aren’t going so well because too many would-be troops are being referred to as white nationalists and the military is being over-politicized.

From here, we can deduce what Tuberville simply meant. The white Trump-supporting populace is being referred to as white nationalists by our own government, which they aren’t, and it’s halting efforts to generate recruits for our overly politicized military. Tuberville thinks politicians should stop with the name-calling and start putting effort into filling the ranks of the institution that protects our nation.

To be clear, he later referred to white nationalists as racist according to Reuters.

Tuberville definitely flubbed his explanation. That much is certain, but I get what he was attempting to do by not giving into the white supremacy buzzword initially. He wasn’t playing the media’s game.

The left, and indeed the corporate media, loves to use “white supremacy” as a buzzword to scare people and generate false narratives. Anything the left doesn’t like is racist, and as such, if they come across something that needs to be spun as evil, then they’ll wheel out the ol’ “white supremacist” phrase, which puts anyone or anything being slapped with it on the defensive. If you’re on the defensive about racism, you look bad no matter what. The media doesn’t obey the innocent until proven guilty principle of our court system, you’re just guilty. Any attempt at defending yourself is easily spun as “that’s what a racist would say.”

So Tuberville was trying to avoid going on the defensive by slapping the down the narrative on the spot, which he did so sloppily. I don’t think Tuberville supports racism or white nationalism, but right now the media sure would like you to think so. Again, credit to Tsirkin for being one of the few reporters who actually got down to what Tuberville was trying to say.

Tuberville would have been more successful if he had corrected the initial interviewer on them not being “white nationalists” but “nationalists.” As Darvio Morrow highlighted, there’s a big difference between a nationalist and a white nationalist.

Tuberville’s mistake was taking the language the left typically uses and running with it. If you let the left control the language, they control the conversation. As you can see, the media is currently having a field day with Tuberville’s comments, and they will use them to not only paint Tuberville as a person who excuses racism but all Republicans and conservatives.

At best, this story highlights that the Alabama Senator needs to work on his strategy in verbal sparring. At worst, it highlights an egregious dishonesty from Democrats and the media, and that Republican leadership is willing to go along with the Democrat’s false narratives.


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