The United States seems to be confirming more and more the sad fact that hate is contagious.
A man in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan, was filmed via smarthphone, Sunday, March 27, yelling out hate speech at a group of presumed Muslims, evoking Republican 2016 presidential front-runner Donald Trump’s name in the process after yelling repetitively, “KILL ALL MUSLIMS!” among other vile, profane statements. The video was uploaded Monday and quickly began stacking up views, shares and comments.
The incident occurred, sadly, near Rosa Parks Circle. The man making a shameful fool of himself yelled across Monroe Center at a group of unidentified people he presumed to be Muslim:
“KILL MUSLIMS! KILL THEM ALL! KILL THEM ALL! KILL YOU ALL! KILL THE MUSLIMS!”
Not long after that tirade the man added:
“TRUMP! TRUMP! TRUMP! TRUMP!”
With each Trump ejaculation he pumps his fist in the air in the video like he’s rooting for a sports team.
Local citizen Candy Valenzuela shot the video and stated with her post when uploading it to Facebook that she believed the man was yelling at a “group of muslims [sic] preaching knowledge.” Valenzuela writes in her post:
“This just happened right in front of my eyes. A group of muslims [sic] preaching knowledge and this guy walks by and just starts yelling! If you can [sic] hear it clearly, at the end he starts yelling Trump! After the video he actually walked by them, tried to swing, missed and fell! ?? #racismstillexist”
Valenzuela’s video has been shared hundreds of times since it was uploaded, Monday.
While people are ultimately responsible for their own decisions, espousing such anti-Muslim, anti-Black, anti-Mexican, anti-woman, anti-disabled beliefs on a platform as large as Donald Trump does in his campaign for the presidency, one can’t help but influence a certain large sect of America just soft-headed enough to believe in their own superiority, or in their lack of need to worry about others’ oppression, afflictions, disenfranchisement, etc., based on the color of their own skin, or some deranged notion that everything they have in life, to whatever heights they climbed, they did it on their own, with no help from anyone whatsoever, by their own “bootstraps.” Understanding that sad reality, then, makes folks like Trump somewhat responsible in giving these people a false belief in the legitimacy of their ignorant claims. The decision to give such people this illusion of legitimacy by espousing similar anti-humane, anti-constitutional claims from a platform as big as a presidential campaign podium, in turn, makes one such as Trump responsible for making the decision to feed that hate.
It may be a form of secondary guilt, but it’s still guilt. It still incites, and if inciting is enough to hold protesters on the least of trumped up charges (forgive the pun), then it should be enough for folks like Donald Trump to face the law, too, for their role in the rise of hate and intolerance in the “United” States of America.
Featured image by Candy Valenzuela via Facebook video screen capture.