Countless Democrats are using the recent tragedies in Texas and Ohio to push political talking points — and the latest liberal to jump on that bandwagon is Rep. Adam Schiff of California.
This week, Schiff joined the chorus of Democrats pointing fingers at President Donald Trump and calling for more gun control after shootings took place in three parts of the country over the last two weekends.
But while that response was largely predictable, the California liberal made a surprising statement when he suggested that “white supremacist violence” was a bigger threat to Americans than foreign terrorist groups.
“We just had a hearing in the Intelligence Committee about this, because the threat domestically from white supremacist violence now I think is eclipsing the threat from the doctrinations of ISIS and al-Qaida and the like in terms of domestic crimes,” the Democrat said, according to KABC-TV.
Schiff currently chairs the House Select Committee on Intelligence, arguably one of the most powerful groups of lawmakers in Washington.
The Democrat tried to tie President Trump to the recent violence, using rhetoric on immigration to suggest that there was a link.
“We can speak out against this hate. We can condemn the president when he engages in it,” Schiff said.
“In one voice, our nation must condemn racism, bigotry and white supremacy. These sinister ideologies must be defeated,” the president said. “Hate has no place in America.”
But Schiff didn’t seem to accept the president’s gesture.
“To hear the president today talk about we all need to be united — well, he’s the biggest part of this problem in terms of using this incendiary language, this dehumanizing language about people coming to this country being invaders,” the Democrat said.
Authorities currently believe that the shooter in El Paso was motivated by radical white nationalist views, and a manifesto believed to have been penned by the suspect appears to confirm this. However, that document also criticized Republicans and mentioned Trump only in passing.
Twenty-two people were killed in that shooting.
Other recent mass shootings did not appear to have been motivated by white nationalism. The suspect in a Dayton, Ohio, tragedy appeared to have been a leftist who was a fan of Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren, while the shooter at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California may have targeted both sides of the political aisle.
Whether Schiff’s claim that “white supremacist violence” is now more dangerous than radical Islamic terrorism is a matter of interpretation. Comparing the actual numbers depends on which time frame one uses, and what definitions are applied.
The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks that al-Qaida carried out killed 2,977 people. Other more recent attacks in the United States were also linked to followers of radical Islam.
In 2013, the Tsarnaev brothers used bombs to kill three people and injure 183 at the Boston Marathon. Two years later, militant Islamic followers killed 14 people during the San Bernardino terrorist attack.
The 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, left 49 people dead after a mass shooter who admitted to being an Islamic fanatic opened fire in the crowded venue.
Then in 2017, an Islamic radical used a pick-up truck to kill eight and wound 12 in Manhattan.
It’s clear that the finger-pointing will continue for some time, with both liberals and conservatives frustrated and saddened due to recent events. However, America doesn’t have to choose either Islamic terrorism or homegrown extremism to condemn.
Both are equally appalling, and all sides must come together to find smart solutions that don’t destroy our freedoms in the process.
CORRECTION, Aug. 8, 2019: This article was originally published under the headline, “Rep. Adam Schiff: Young White Males Are More Dangerous Than ISIS.” Schiff only referred to violence from white supremacists in his statement, not young white males specifically. We have updated the headline accordingly.
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