President Trump has accelerated his tweet storm and threats against Seattle, local and state officials, and the six-block area some are calling the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone.
But the 45th president can’t bring himself to mention the name of Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan.
“Seattle mayor says, about the anarchist takeover of her city, ‘It is a summer of love.’ These Liberal Dems don’t have a clue. The terrorists burn and pillage our cities, and they think it’s wonderful, even the death. Must end this Seattle takeover now.”
Seattle Mayor says, about the anarchists takeover of her city, “it is a Summer of Love”. These Liberal Dems don’t have a clue. The terrorists burn and pillage our cities, and they think it is just wonderful, even the death. Must end this Seattle takeover now!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 12, 2020
Trump is continuing to issue threats, although apparently leaving it to Gov. Jay Inslee to carry them out.
In a Thursday interview with Fox News, his media echo chamber, Trump declared, “What I mean is very simple: We’re not going to let Seattle be occupied by anarchists.”
The 45th president added a moment later, “If we have to go in, we’re going to go,” but then said, “The governor’s either going to do it — let the governor do it. He’s got great National Guard troops.”
Trump watches a lot of television, and is reflecting a vision of Seattle being drummed home by Fox News hosts Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham. Consider Hannity’s description of the Autonomous Zone: “Dozens of homes now under siege. A police precinct is now under anarchist control.”
“The citizens of Seattle are now literally in danger and are watching it in real time as these Democratic so called leaders are looking the other way as a group of idiot anarchists destroy their own city.”
The untruths abound, not surprising given a) Hannity’s history of conspiracy theories; b) Carlson’s dog-whistle racism and and crime-laden commentaries — he actually lectured Trump with the words, “People will not forgive weakness;” — and c) Trump’s tendency to tweet what he sees on TV.
Seattle has not been taken over. A visitor to Capitol Hill finds food trucks, a boarded up East Precinct station, and no siege for the area’s 500 residents. Durkan was interviewed by Chris Cuomo on CNN and was asked when the SPD will get back into East Precinct. She couldn’t give a date, and then joked, “And we may have a summer of love.”
Nor are protests against police misconduct limited to Seattle and the Puget Sound area. A march will be held Friday night in the remote Methow Valley town of Twisp, followed by a candlelight vigil in Omak.
Inslee is a longtime Trump critic. When Trump came to Washington in May of 2016, the governor joked about building a wall around the state to keep him out. Inslee mocked Trump, to his face, taking about first grade teachers “packing heat,” after Trump proposed arming teachers as a means of preventing gun violence. Trump has called Inslee “a snake” for his trenchant criticism of the Trump Administration’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Of events on Capitol Hill, and Trump’s initial tweet, Inslee responded.
“Although unpermitted, and we should remember we are still in a pandemic, the area is largely peaceful. Peaceful protests are fundamentally American, and I am hopeful there will be a peaceful resolution.”
One of Seattle’s critics is, however, hurting today. A bevy of big advertisers — Disney, Papa John’s, T-Mobile and Poshmark — have pulled or discontinued their spots given Carlson’s comments on the Black Lives Matter protests.
“Bye bye Tucker Carlson,” T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert said in a post.