In one of the finest addresses of his presidency to date, President Donald Trump took aim at the leftist violence, looting, and anarchy that now dominate the streets, promising to use federal power to crush the radical insurrectionists whom the nation’s do-nothing governors and mayors have been allowing to run wild.
“My fellow Americans: My first and highest duty as president is to defend our great country and the American people. I swore an oath to uphold the laws of our nation, and that is exactly what I will do,” Trump said in a 7-minute speech on the evening of June 1.
The American people support the president’s proposal by a 2 to 1 margin, according to a new Morning Consult poll. Of registered voters responding, 58 percent said they support “calling in the U.S. military to supplement city police forces.” Only 30 percent said they were opposed.
The oration came after a week of bloody rioting, arson, and looting across America organized by Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and as Trevor Loudon reports, other America-hating radical leftist groups, including Democratic Socialists of America, Workers World Party, Revolutionary Communist Party, and the Party for Socialism and Liberation. All those groups seized on the opportunity of the May 25 death of George Floyd. Floyd was a black man who perished after then-Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee into the suspect’s neck for almost 9 minutes, an event captured on video that quickly went viral. An independent autopsy and one conducted by the local medical examiner both ruled the death a homicide but differed on the cause of death. The in-custody death video became a recruiting tool for agitators.
Before his speech, Trump thrilled conservatives when he announced he would designate Antifa as a terrorist organization. In 2016 the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) labeled Antifa’s activities “domestic terrorist violence,” as Politico reported. DHS acknowledged last week that “anarchist and militia extremists could try to exploit the recent nationwide protests,” the newspaper also reported.
Ultra-violent Antifa, a revolutionary communist-anarchist militia movement that aspires to forcibly overthrow the United States government, has gained new prominence in the post-Obama era. Adopting fascistic tactics, they trace their roots back to Nazi Germany. Although they opposed the Sturmabteilung (SA), or Nazi storm troopers going back to the Weimar era, like the SA they also used violence to intimidate political opponents and break up their meetings and rallies. It could be argued that the ideological distance between Antifa and the now-defunct National Socialist German Workers’ Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, abbreviated as NSDAP) or Nazi Party, is so slight it could be measured in millimeters.
Antifa is not typically thought of as a single organization: it is a movement or coalition of leftist groups, each of which claims to combat “fascism,” a political ideology whose definition academics have been arguing about for decades. The word Antifa itself is a truncation of anti-fascist.
Trump said in his address that “all Americans were rightly sickened and revolted by the brutal death of George Floyd. … But we cannot allow the righteous cries and peaceful protesters to be drowned out by an angry mob. The biggest victims of the rioting are peace-loving citizens in our poorest communities, and as their president, I will fight to keep them safe. I will fight to protect you. I am your president of law and order, and an ally of all peaceful protesters.”
The president pinned the blame for the nationwide disturbances on “professional anarchists, violent mobs, arsonists, looters, criminals, rioters, Antifa, and others.”
“Small-business owners have seen their dreams utterly destroyed. New York’s Finest have been hit in the face with bricks. Brave nurses, who have battled the virus, are afraid to leave their homes. A police precinct station has been overrun. Here in the nation’s capital, the Lincoln Memorial and the World War Two Memorial have been vandalized. One of our most historic churches was set ablaze. A federal officer in California, an African American enforcement hero, was shot and killed.
“These are not acts of peaceful protest. These are acts of domestic terror. The destruction of innocent life and the spilling of innocent blood is an offense to humanity and a crime against God.”
Trump pointed to the weak governors and local officials who have refused to insist on law and order in their communities.
“A number of state and local governments have failed to take necessary action to safeguard their residence. Innocent people have been savagely beaten, like the young man in Dallas, Texas, who was left dying on the street, or the woman in Upstate New York viciously attacked by dangerous thugs.”
If those officials refuse to protect their citizens, President Trump said he will step in.
“I am taking immediate presidential action to stop the violence and restore security and safety in America. I am mobilizing all available federal resources — civilian and military — to stop the rioting and looting, to end the destruction and arson, and to protect the rights of law-abiding Americans, including your Second Amendment rights.”
The “riots and lawlessness” must end now, he said.
Every governor has been urged “to deploy the National Guard in sufficient numbers … [to] dominate the streets. Mayors and governors must establish an overwhelming law enforcement presence until the violence has been quelled.”
If a state or city “refuses to take the actions that are necessary to defend the life and property of their residents, then I will deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem for them.”
Trump also said he was “taking swift and decisive action to protect our great capital, Washington, D.C. … As we speak, I am dispatching thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers, military personnel, and law enforcement officers to stop the rioting, looting, vandalism, assaults, and the wanton destruction of property.”
“I want the organizers of this terror to be on notice that you will face severe criminal penalties and lengthy sentences in jail,” he said. “This includes Antifa and others who are leading instigators of this violence.”
After the speech, Trump crossed the street to St. John’s Church, which rioters had set on fire. He posed in front of the 204-year-old church holding a bible after an angry mob was dispersed by the authorities. It was a courageous act intended to show the nation that its chief executive intends to restore law and order throughout the land.
But leftists and NeverTrumpers moaned and whined.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser, a leftist Democrat who has endorsed Joe Biden for president, complained that the leader of the free world took a stroll without seeking her permission.
“I imposed a curfew at 7pm. A full 25 minutes before the curfew & w/o provocation, federal police used munitions on peaceful protestors in front of the White House, an act that will make the job of @DCPoliceDept officers more difficult. Shameful!” she tweeted.
Leftist politicians like Bowser want to keep the chaos going.
As long as they maintain their death-grip on power, it doesn’t matter if their constituents suffer.