Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Star Of David? What Star Of David?

Conservative Boston radio talk show host Howie Carr had finished his interview with Donald Trump last week when he remarked

“Whatever you do, don’t apologize,” he said. “You never hear me apologize, do you? That’s what killed Jimmy the Greek way back. Remember? He was doing okay ’til he said he was sorry.”

That's probably good advice strategically, something Anthony Weiner, a few other Democrats, and one or two Republicans would have benefitted by understanding. Deny, deny, deny- that harm was intended, that the event was interpreted accurately, or even that it had taken place.

And so it is that the social media director of the Trump campaign rationalized on Facebook

The social media graphic used this weekend was not created by the campaign nor was it sourced from an anti-Semitic site. It was lifted from an anti-Hillary Twitter user where countless images appear.

The sheriff’s badge – which is available under Microsoft’s “shapes” - fit with the theme of corrupt Hillary and that is why I selected it.

As the Social Media Director for the campaign, I would never offend anyone and therefore chose to remove the image.

He already offended Americans, thus: mission accomplished, for that is the spirit and the letter of the campaign which has rocketed Donald Trump to a presidential nomination.   Although politically insignificant, the claim of innocence is weak. Gideon Resnick explains

The earliest iteration of the questionable picture seems to have come from the Twitter account @FishBoneHead1, which tweeted the image on June 15. 

From there, the image found its way to 8chan, a gurgling cesspool on the Internet that is currently devoted to celebrating the death of Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel. AsMic.com reported on Sunday, the image was posted there on June 22, featuring the file name HillHistory.jpg which could be a reference to the Neo-Nazi code "HH," short for "Heil Hitler." 

@FishBoneHead1 describes himself as a "comedian" who will "probably offend you if you are Liberal, Politically Correct, Feminist, Democrat." The account has created or shared several racist memes bashing Clinton, Muslims, and other minorities.

The tweet was deleted, political damage thus diminished. Further, we are reminded that Donald Trump understands what so many other politicians don't. Politico notes that his campaign wrote

These false attacks by Hillary Clinton trying to link the Star of David with a basic star, often used by sheriffs who deal with criminals and criminal behavior, showing an inscription that says 'Crooked Hillary is the most corrupt candidate ever' with anti-Semitism is ridiculous," 

"It's ridiculous to charge that my pants are down," Donald Trump would confidently state. They were someone else's pants so it couldn't even have been me."

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