Texas Senator Ted Cruz was a guest on of Dallas radio talk show host Mark Davis. The conversation naturally turned to last weekend in Charlottesville.
I’m relying on Conservative Review for the key quotes:
“We shouldn’t be seeing this in America,” Cruz said. “Listen: Nazis, and the Klan, and white supremacists, these guys are racist, racist, bigoted thugs. They’re idiots. What they’re saying is wrong. They’re lies.”
“And under the First Amendment they have a right to speak,” Sen. Cruz said.
“Even those profoundly wrong have a right to speak and express their views, but they’ve got to express it peaceably. They don’t have a right to violence, they don’t have a right to murder, they don’t have a right to assault others.”
Despite insisting on even detestable groups’ freedom to protest, Senator Cruz said there is a “moral obligation” for the rest of us to denounce “the lies, and bigotry, and evil, and hatred they’re spreading.”
He criticized Democrats and the mainstream media for slandering conservatives by equating them with Alt-“Right” white supremacists.
“One of the things we’re seeing going on is the media and the Democrats are, to the surprise of no one, demagoguing this issue and using it for political advantage,” Cruz said. “So, in the media’s telling, they want to tar and feather any Republican, any conservative, and paint us all as these crazy racist nutbags.”
I think Senator Cruz hits on two very important points in this. First, the First Amendment covers reprehensible speech as well as virtuous speech. This is a very good thing. Because the moment someone starts deciding what is good speech and bad speech, then speech has ceased to exist. Not only do they have a right to say ugly stuff, they have a right to expect that the government will make a good faith effort to prevent them from being attacked. Secondly, he is absolutely right that the Democrats and the media successfully made the neo-Nazis protesting in Charlottesville a proxy for every Republican and every conservative.
NRA and American conservatives/Nazis are one and the same. https://t.co/Jl0cnkimoZ
— Markos Moulitsas (@markos) August 13, 2017
Every time one of these “crazy racist nutbag” groups surfaces, there is a demand that Republicans and conservatives denounce and repudiate these groups even though we have no relationship to them or their beliefs. And each denunciation only serves to further cement in the public’s mind that the Klan and neo-Nazis and conservatives are the same thing. This is the flip side of absolutely no Democrat being called upon to denounce anything. In fact, Bernie f***ing Sanders, who had an on-the-record, avowed supporter try to shoot up the GOP softball team, was among the first out of the blocks to bash the GOP over Charlottesville. Al Sharpton was given a forum to criticize President Trump… who, by the way, has never fomented a riot. I’ve lived too long to expect “fairness” in anything in life, but, for the life of me, I don’t understand why we allow the Democrats to do this to us over and over and over.
Naturally, Senator Cruz’s comments didn’t sit too well with the press:
Cruz: Dems using issues surrounding Charlottesville to try to "tar & feather any Republican… & paint us all as these crazy racist nutbags"
— Patrick Svitek (@PatrickSvitek) August 15, 2017
Then this jerk chimed in:
Ted Cruz famously gave a speech calling Barack Obama the world's biggest financier of terrorism (cuz of Iran deal) https://t.co/eEsA6IQRq6
— Simon Maloy (@SimonMaloy) August 15, 2017
And for his douchiness, he received a denunciation and repudiation all his own:
Uh, facts matter. Fact 1: Iran is world's largest funder of terrorism. Fact 2: Obama gave Iran $1.7 billion, in unmarked cash. Therefore…. https://t.co/0OBrTNlBjG
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 15, 2017