The clear message of the RNC’s first day was that the safety of (white) Americans is directly threatened by (Latino) immigrants, Muslims, and black people.

White elevators at the #RNCinCLE

Convention organizers inadvertently revealed the actual tone of the #RNCinCLE

The soundtrack to opening night of the Republican National Convention was Queen and cheesy covers of the Turtles and the Rolling Stones, but convention organizers might as well have played a dirge. The program was stacked with three bleak hours of speeches from military members, law-enforcement officers, and elected officials, interlaced with a parade of people whose loved ones had been killed at the hands of undocumented immigrants and Islamic extremists. The clear message was that the safety of Americans (read white people) is directly threatened by the free movement of immigrants (namely Latinos), Muslims, and black people who assert their humanity.

Texas Representative Michael McCaul told the crowd about the looming security threats that now materialize with seeming regularity. “We are in the crosshairs,” he said. “Our own city streets have become the battleground.” McCaul listed cities where killers who were alleged to have connections with Muslim extremist groups had gone on killing rampages: Fort Hood, Chattanooga, San Bernardino, and Orlando.

“Let’s cut through the suffocating political correctness,” McCaul said, “The enemy is radical Islam.” McCaul conveniently left off naming places like Charleston, Newtown, Aurora, and Tucson, where white men perpetrated deadly mass shootings. Such incidents presumably don’t comport with his strict dichotomy.

The official theme of the evening was “Make America Safe Again,” but it could just as well have been, “Beware the Brown and Black People in Your Midst, They Are Coming to Kill You, and Don’t Forget, All Lives Matter.”

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