Bless his heart. When Lindsey Graham is supposed to talk, he won’t. When he shouldn’t talk, he does.
The battle wages on between Graham and the Fulton County District Attorney in Georgia over the subpoena requiring him to testify. But Graham took time off to appear on Fox News and put a silver wedgie in his mouth.
“If they try to prosecute President Trump for mishandling classified information after Hillary Clinton set up a server in her basement, there literally will be riots in the street. I worry about our country,” he said. Your concern for the United States is so touching, honey, I get all choked up.
What does Hillary Clinton have to do with the current legal mess Trump has gotten himself into? Trump’s Department of Justice (and it was, no doubt, his department) had four very long years to file charges and make them stick. But it’s the “riots in the street” part that has gotten all the media attention.
Before we get into that, it’s virtually impossible to talk about Graham without touching on the much reported allegations that he is, in fact, a closeted homosexual. Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn. It is a bit troubling, however, that even gay folks publicly try to weaponize these rumors as if he would be shamed by being outed. To be fair, I’ve done it myself, having referenced “bro jobs” in relation to his bromance with John McCain. But why bother? He has no shame. So let’s just leave him to Heaven—or Hell, as the case may be.
One of the things Graham doesn’t understand is how difficult it is to plan the riots he’s talking about and make them look spontaneous. This is particularly true when the trigger is some type of indictment, which would come down without enough notice to organize a decent riot, much less a string of them all over the country. Even a standard-issue peaceful protest has to get a committee together, select the speakers, decide who gets to carry the bullhorn, and all that stuff.
Besides, the protests-cum-riots normally take place after the trial and once the verdict is announced. Regardless of how rowdy one’s supporters might be, it would be downright silly to behave criminally just when the indictment is made—a complete waste of time, energy and money.
The White Night riots in San Francisco in 1979 broke out over the leniency shown Dan White for the assassinations of Harvey Milk and George Moscone. The 1992 Los Angeles riots followed the acquittal of four police officers in the Rodney King case. Unpopular verdicts, you see. Do your homework, people.
Now the part I really have some trouble understanding is how these premature riots would work out anyway. First off, a riot that is planned leaves its organizers open for charges of conspiracy. (See January 6.) Then, an unprotected target location is needed, like San Francisco’s City Hall. Finally, the rioters need to have surprise on their side, preferably a group of people presumed to be incapable of violence, like the “nice little fairies who have hairdressing salons” as described by gay Supervisor Harry Britt the day after the White Night riots.
No surprise, no spontaneity and no location. A big fail on all counts. But Graham drops the “riot” word, and we’re supposed to start actin’ all skeered. Girl, please.
There is no doubt that there are people on both sides, and not necessarily the good ones, who have been spoiling for trouble—cruising for a bruising, we oldsters used to say. Political violence should be avoided as much as possible, but the threat of such violence should not dissuade our leaders and, most particularly, our law enforcement from doing their jobs. To avoid at all costs is to invite tyranny.
Besides, if the overturning of Roe v. Wade taught us nothing, we should have learned that a single act—even a Supreme Court decision—is not the end of the game. The Mueller report, two impeachments and even the 2020 election were not definitive in dealing with Trumpism. As satisfying as many would find a Trump indictment, or multiple indictments for that matter, such action will not be the final chapter of this story.
“May you live in interesting times” is probably an American—not Chinese—curse these days. But our cursed times have all the Pumpkin Spice Latte we can drink, all the never-ending breadsticks we can eat, and all the Happy Meals we could ever want.
So if referring to the senior senator from South Carolina as Lady G, Miss Lindsey or Lady Bug makes it easier, do it. After all, she has no shame.