Let’s pick our battles, folks.
Trump used the word lynch yesterday to describe what the evil Democrats were doing to him. That doesn’t make him a racist: it simply verifies the fact that he is a stupid, stupid man.
In order for him to know that lynching is a fraught term, he would need an actual knowledge of his country’s history—a sense of the past. We already know that he lacks that: he’s still awaiting a visit from Frederick Douglass (which is even less likely to happen if he keeps throwing around words like lynch).
The old adage—pictures are hung; people are hanged—is usually good enough to get us through the average day. But throw lynch into the mix, and the hanging takes on racial overtones. The shameful history is inescapable: thousands of black citizens—men, women, and children—hanged without a trial and hanged primarily because they were not white.
Trump facing impeachment is not remotely close to a person of any color being lynched: he is simply being forced to confront the fact that he violated his oath to defend the Constitution. Of course he has violated it countless times, but this time he got caught and reputable people are willing to testify to what he did. And yet...as egregious as his dealings with Ukraine have been, he is not being taken out to be hanged. No lynching. He still sleeps in a nice bed in a nice house in a nice area of Washington D.C. He has nice clothes and a nice plane and a nice salary to hire a nice lawyer to make sure he doesn’t go to a not-so-nice jail.
His life is full niceties, all of which were denied to people of color when they were accused of a crime, or a misdemeanor, or an infraction, or of being black. Many of them were lynched, murdered the same day—and sometimes the same hour—that they were accused. Donald Trump should shut up about a lot of things he knows nothing about, but though the list is long, there’s always room for more, like removing lynch from his impassioned pleas and whimpering tweets for mercy.
Now that I’ve written about this, let me just say that I shouldn’t have. Lynch is just a hiccup from an incompetent burping his way through the presidency.
Again, let's pick our battles.
The betrayal of the Kurds and their slaughter by the Turkish military, the subsequent divvying up of their land by Putin and Erdogan, and the renewed capabilities of ISIS far exceed in importance—and horror—the linguistic and historical illiteracy of the president.
Words have power and they should be used correctly. But attacking Trump for one more tactless incident while other men, women, and children are being butchered by the dictators with whom he has willingly crawled into bed renders his ignorance a lot less amusing and a lot more dangerous.