PASADENA, Calif., July 20, 2016 — The GOP convention’s second day didn’t make as many headlines as the first night, but there were still some great moments from people like Donald Trump Jr., Chris Christie and Ben Carson.
Night one was thought-provoking. The lineup of speakers and the night’s theme, “Make America Safe Again,” illuminated an important difference between Democrats and Republicans.
Who will be speaking at the DNC convention next week?
Lezley McSpadden, the mother of Michael Brown.
A pointless death is a tragedy, and the loss of a child is devastating. A mother’s grief can send a powerful message, as Republicans learned on Monday. But the media and left-wing activists spread a false narrative, the lie that Mike Brown was murdered in the street with his hands up as he screamed, “Don’t shoot!” That story was debunked by eyewitness testimony, forensics and ultimately the DOJ.
The Democrats will nevertheless put McSpadden on stage, not to say that her son robbed a convenience store, disobeyed a cop’s orders, wrestled with the cop and tried to take his gun and then charged at him before being shot.
Rather, they will put her on stage to recreate that original false narrative, once again dragging officer Darren Wilson through the mud.
The contrast is stark. The GOP devoted a night to supporting law enforcement and the rule of law. It was a thoroughly inclusive night.
During his speech, perhaps the most powerful of the night, Rudy Giuliani said clearly that cops who do wrong should be punished, but the police are there to protect all Americans regardless of race, gender, or creed. I think we can all agree with that.
Why do Democrats pander so much on this subject? The message of making the police accountable for their behavior is important, but it’s one Democrats seem unable to make without suggesting that police brutality against black men is the norm.
Police brutality is real. It is a crime that often goes unpunished. People in the black community are often treated as second-class, their voices ignored.
That is all wrong.
But so too is the narrative that says the police are out-of-control, black-hating thugs—”pigs.” It is wrong to turn every black man shot into a saint and a martyr. That narrative has created an open season on police.
McSpadden stood by her husband when he told crowds in Ferguson to burn the city down. Is that what she’ll bring to the Democrats’ convention? How does that move the conversation forward?
Democrats and allies like Black Lives Matter have abandoned the unifying notion of equal protection under the law for the divisive one of us-versus-them.
On night one of their convention, Republicans put forward the clear message that they solidly support the vast majority of police officers who take seriously the job and the motto, “to protect and serve,” while condemning those cops who abuse their position of trust and authority. That is the position that should unify us, but the Democrats opt for the position that will divide us: “Hands up, don’t shoot!” A lie to pit us against them.
America is divided across race and gender lines because that division maintains a model of political power, the model of the identity politics of us versus them. That is the model that McSpadden embraced when she decided to incite riots in Ferguson rather than work to bind the community together.
At one convention, we saw law enforcement figures call for calm and support of the rule of law; at the other we will see the polarization that keeps open the hunting season on police.
This is the perhaps the most significant contrast between the two conventions.