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  • Christopher Strain

Small Comfort

I would be ever so slightly more comforted about the general state of awfulness in America if, after the racist slayings, attempted mail bombings, and synagogue shootings (just to pull a few stories from this week’s headlines in Louisville, New York, and Pittsburgh, respectively), someone—anyone—on the right side of the political spectrum would speak out against the alt-right hooliganism and domestic terrorism taking hold in American life and integrating themselves into the GOP. When the President of the United States vilifies the news media and then registers faux surprise when journalists are attacked, when GOP politicians bear mute witness to the violent attacks directed against their one-time political adversaries, when Trump worshipers blame the victims of violence rather than the perpetrators, when right-wing pundits complain about “incivility” while conflating political anger with political violence, when conservatives draw a false equivalence between white supremacists and those who would stand up to them, and when ordinary Republicans say nothing about any of it, it creates the impression that decency, integrity, and the moral guardianship of traditional American values have been abandoned by the right and left to the left. Have they?

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