I was in Israel during both the Republican and Democratic conventions. During one Shabbat dinner, a close friend and colleague remarked about the nomination of Hillary Clinton for President-“I fear assassination”. At the time, I thought his comment was reflecting excessive concern.
Now that Mr Trump has called for Second Amendment supporters to potentially remedy a Clinton Presidency (He was calling for action after the election not before as his supporters have claimed) I wonder if my friend was not right. That same month, I visited the Yitzhak Rabin Center in Tel Aviv. Devoted to the late Prime Minister and his life, it was a somber reminder of the tragic effects of intemperate rhetoric. (You may wish to see Tom Friedman’s piece in today’s Times for a sobering analysis. The fact is that in the months leading up to his murder, there were heated calls for assassination, including rhetoric clearly and unambiguously spouted in the presence of his rival, Benjamin Netanyahu. The Likud opposition did not tamp down the heated jargon, and all it took was one sick individual to be influenced by the atmosphere and take action.
At what point will the American people, and American society in general recognize that this is not about politics but simple decency?