DANIEL VAUGHAN: The strategic silence of Democrats over liberal failures

Does anyone remember this line? “Silence is violence.” It was a popular motto during the summer marches and riots of 2020 and the #MeToo era of social media.

What happened to those people? The only thing that’s changed lately is a different administration is in charge, but those people seem to have gone silent.

Remember all the outrage at “kids in cages” during the Trump administration? Biden is opening his own version. The Washington Post reports:

Dozens of migrant teens boarded vans Monday for the trip down a dusty road to a former man camp for oil field workers here, the first migrant child facility opened under the Biden administration. The emergency facility — a vestige of the Trump administration that was open for only a month in summer 2019 — is being reactivated to hold up to 700 children ages 13 to 17.

Did you catch the new name for these facilities? “Migrant child facilities.” It’s funny how an election changes “kids in cages” and “concentration camps” to “migrant child facilities.”

The Washington Post wasn’t the only one doing this. Everyone in the media joined in, including the ever-reliable progressive site Vox, who tried to differentiate these facilities from those under the Trump administration.

I give props to Representative Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez for sticking to her guns and tweeting that she still thought the Biden administration’s plan was bad, like the Trump administration. But calling this a “fraught, unjust immigration system,” is a far cry from when she was accusing the Trump administration of hosting concentration camps on US soil.

It’s not surprising to see this turn in rhetoric. In 2019, at the height of the outcry on the left, they began releasing viral pictures of “kids in cages,” only those viral pictures turned out to be from 2014, during the Obama administration.

If anything is happening in the Biden administration, it’s not a return to Trump-era policies. He’s reverting to the Obama administration’s form when it comes to immigration.

We got another similar thing this week when Democratic icon and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was accused of sexual harassment, along with many other things, to go along with the investigation into his acts of hiding the deaths in New York nursing homes from COVID-19.

That story dropped, and then an interesting thing happened among many Democrats: Silence. No outrage, no hashtag campaigns, no loud condemnations on cable news shows.

Cuomo has a laundry of list of things he’s done wrong. Sexual harassment is, in this case, probably a few notches below sending COVID-19 positive patents into nursing homes where deaths skyrocketed. But still, silence on all the above is telling.

CNN, in particular, was quiet on all these events. After being out in front of Brett Kavanaugh and holding a town hall mere days after a mass shooting event, allowing a sheriff to lie for hours about what happened, the best CNN could do on this story was a headline declaring Cuomo denied the allegations. CNN’s Jake Tapper, long known for his moralistic tweeting, could only muster one tweet on Cuomo denying the allegation.

If silence is real violence, these progressives, liberals, and national journalists have suddenly turned into truly violent people.

I’m obviously writing with some heavy sarcasm throughout this piece. It seems warranted here because we’re walking through a lot of variations of hypocrisy. You can take your pick here on what’s really happening: they either don’t believe a word of their criticisms, and everything they accused Trump of doing was just partisan blathering, or they do believe everything they say, and their silence condemns them.

It seems pretty clear they never believed a word of their own nonsense in terms of the media. Whatever slanted story proved their central narrative of “orange man is bad and we have to cover him 24/7” is what stood for the truth that day. The national media’s bias is less toward outright embracement of various ideologies, though that does exist, than more toward doing whatever it can to aid Democrats to victory.

But for the true believers on the left, who believed every word and bought into everything, their silence speaks volumes. That’s what they said during the Trump administration, anyway.

The next version of this kind of hypocrisy will be over Syria and the U.S. military force there. Biden ordered U.S. military airstrikes in Syria against certain rebel groups there. Objectively, there’s a case to be made for those strikes. The New York Times reports the strikes targeted “Iran-backed militias responsible for recent attacks against American and allied personnel in Iraq.”

The issue? A whole lot of people in the White House have said such strikes are wrong. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki questioned the legal authority of such strikes in 2017. Then-Sen. Kamala Harris said Trump lacked the authority for such strikes and called for congressional intervention. None of this counts Joe Biden and the Obama administration’s failures on the Syria front.

It’s not quite a “silence is violence” kind of issue, but it does highlight the same issues. Strategic silence abounds in these moments. During the Trump administration, the CNN’s and Jake Tapper’s of the world took particular glee in pointing this out. Now? Silence.

I wonder how long that silence can last. Four years?