To all US Representatives and Senators: If your first thought upon hearing about the violence in Charlottesville on Saturday was anything but “this is horrible, I have to condemn it,” you need to spend some time reassessing your values and your commitment to the US Constitution.
If you thought “I have to condemn this, but I can’t be too specific lest I offend my base,” that should give you pause. If your base includes white supremacist and Nazis, and if you’re worried about offending them, you’re doing something wrong. Because if Nazis and white supremacists approve of you, your values are not American values.
If you thought “I shouldn’t say anything because it’ll offend my base” or because you agree with the white supremacists and Nazis, you are part of the problem. I hope you’re OK if your constituents begin to treat you as such, because as much as speech has consequences, so does silence.
And if you were out of touch this past weekend for some reason and didn’t hear about Charlottesville, this is the sort of thing that your staff should have informed you about. You should really have a chat with them about that.
I recommend everyone look at their Representatives and Senators and see if they issued a strong condemnation, a mealy-mouthed tactful one, or dead silence. And then you let them have it – your support for strong condemnations, your… disappointment for anything less.