Republican Victimhood and the Rise of Political Violence
Matthew McGowen’s October 9 article in the Cornell Daily Sun about Congressman Tom Reed’s visit to campus emphasized Republican students’ fears about being subjected to social backlash if they wore their MAGA hats on campus. Senator Rand Paul recently said that political divisiveness will lead to “an assassination” and that “someone is going to be killed and that those who are ratcheting up the conversation ... they have to realize that they bear some responsibility if this elevates to violence.” Tom Reed’s website claims that his staff members have been threatened by his opponent, Tracy Mitrano’s, supporters and blamed Representative Maxine Waters for encouraging harassment of public servants. And Republicans are quick to point out the attempted assassination of GOP Representative Steve Scalise in June 2016.
It is time to put Republican claims of perpetual victimhood in context.