Hate Crimes Are More Important Than a Few Rich Kids Getting Into Harvard

David Leonhardt:

The president of the United States suggested last week that his political supporters might resort to violence if they didn’t get their way. The statement didn’t even get that much attention. I’m guessing you heard a lot more about the college-admissions scandal than about the president’s threat of extralegal violence.

Thanks, David! This allows me to complain about my two pet peeves from last week. First, the unbelievable amount of attention paid to a tiny little college admissions scandal. We still don’t know how many people were involved, but at appears to be something like 0.01 percent of the entering freshman class of America’s most elite universities. This is a rounding error, and it’s for a scandal that only affects about 5 or 6 percent of American families in the first place. What’s more, it’s just standard issue cheating, not even a symptom of some new or systemic problem. It deserved a few column inches on A7, not flood-the-zone coverage everywhere we looked.

And then there’s the president of the United States coyly suggesting that he has “tough” supporters who might—wink wink—get even tougher under the right circumstances. Sure, it’s just Donald Trump acting like his usual asshole self. But still. Doesn’t this deserve a few front-page stories? I mean, maybe it’s just a coincidence that hate crimes suddenly spiked as soon as Trump became president. But then again, maybe it’s not.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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