Maxine Waters gave an interview to a site called Blavity in which she reacts to finding out she was one of the targets of the mail bombs sent this week. As Waters sees it, this is the direct result of presidential dog whistles:
In a Blavity Politics exclusive interview on Wednesday, Waters sounded off on finding out she was one of the intended victims. It was also discovered that, later that same day, South Los Angeles postal workers found a suspicious package addressed to the representative.
In her response, Waters spoke to how President Trump’s hateful rhetoric has only helped to incite various hateful attacks that have unfolded since his time in office.
“I think the president of United States should take responsibility for the kind of violence that we are seeing for the first time in different ways,” Waters told Blavity. “I think the president of the United States has been dog-whistling to his constituency, making them believe that their problems are caused by those people over there.
Waters continued, “I think that they’re acting out what they believe the president wants them to do and the way he wants them to act.” After citing some of his comments at rallies, she added, “He is expert at lying and deceiving and of course encouraging people in his own way to be violent or to be racist or to be separatist.”
First of all, we don’t know who sent these bombs or why. Yes, we can all form a guess based on the list of recipients. But before assigning blame shouldn’t we at least know for sure what prompted this? Second, if Trump really is a master at sending these dog-whistles to get people to do this, it’s pretty amazing that only one nut in Florida received the message. Doesn’t the fact that no one else resorted to this suggest that maybe that wasn’t how most people took Trump’s criticism of Waters and others?
What’s really amazing is that Waters, of all people, says this after she encouraged her supporters to hound Trump officials out of restaurants and gas stations at her own mini-rally. That wasn’t a dog whistle on her part, it was a direct call to get in people’s faces everywhere they go and harass them.
Look, I get that some people really believe rhetoric creates a climate of hate that leads to violence. All I ask of those people is that they believe it regardless of who is spewing the rhetoric and not limit it to rhetoric on the other side. Maxine Waters fails that test. If she really believes what she’s saying, she should be a lot more careful with her own words at her own rallies. And if she’s not going to take any responsibility for that then she shouldn’t be demanding anyone else do so. She is just about the worst Democrat on the scene to deliver this message of rhetorical responsibility.
Here’s the Blavity interview. And below that is Waters’ own example of how responsible elected officials should behave.