In the great 1933 film "Duck Soup," Chico Marx asks Margaret Dumont, “Who ya’ gonna’ believe, me or your own [lying] eyes?” That query addresses the less odyssey than travesty of thousands of illegal aliens trying to invade the southern border of the United States.
For weeks we were told by the media, Hollywood, academe, and Resistance elite — pardon the repetition — that a migrant Caravan from Central America to America was a “myth.” When it surfaced, the Left said migrants would never reach the U.S. border’s busiest port of entry at Tijuana, Mexico. When they did, elites said not to worry: All came in peace. Then thugs started throwing rocks and cement at our Border Patrol — film’s “eyes” again showing who the real liars were.
At each juncture of the Caravan, what Donald Trump said would happen, happened. At each point — as migrants tried to scale the wall, people with disease were discovered among invaders, and MS-13 gang members were found by the Border Patrol — the only resistance the Resistance seemed capable of was to the truth. Seldom have so many been so wrong about so much.
By any measure, this could never have happened even five years ago — a mob of people willing to storm the gates, mock our laws, and eviscerate our borders, not even feigning to assimilate. The Resistance lauds group grievance me, not general interest we, identity politics trumping national identity, vowing asylum/amnesty all around.
The Resistance denies it — but our (un)lying eyes confirm it. What caused the Left to deliberately distort the truth about the Caravan? One or more of four reasons, each reinforcing another:
The first reason is that the Left is drunk on power, any means now acceptable to its end. Liberals believe correctly that illegal aliens will blindly vote Democratic. Thus, break the law and flood the border. This conduct apes post-Election Day 2016’s: Trump electors braving hate calls and death threats; Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavinaugh assaulted; GOP officials threatened, one shot near death; late-night TV hailing Trump’s faux bloody severed head. The leprosy goes on.
Reason two to distort the Caravan is that many Leftists don’t much like America. We have been here before. In October 1969, anti-U.S. Vietnam demonstrators chanted, “Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Min is going to win” and had a North Vietnam official bless them: “May your fall offensive proceed splendidly.” At 2006 rallies, illegals showed similar lack of loyalty, burning the U.S. flag, waving Mexico’s, and demanding instant citizenship. The Caravan’s cult waved every flag but ours, flaunting no fidelity toward a land they feign to love.
A third possible cause for distortion about the Caravan is hypocrisy — convenient amnesia. “Critics of Trump denounced the action by Federal agents as overkill,” read Associated Press, “when they used tear gas to repel a crowd of migrants that included angry rock-throwers and barefoot, crying children.” Whose policy was Trump enforcing? Barack Obamas’s. According to Homeland Security data, Obama tear-gassed illegal aliens 76 times at the same entry point at Tijuana — 26 times in 2012, 27 in 2013, 15 in 2014, and eight in 2015 — and the elite Left never made a peep.
This accents a fourth reason to distort the Caravan. The Resistance regularly falsifies. Most Americans don’t, would be embarrassed to, are taught to respect the Golden Rule and Ten Commandments. A great majority share Ronald Reagan’s belief in America as God’s “Shining City on a Hill.” By contrast, a Pew poll I have previously noted shows a historic-high 23 percent touting itself “non-believers” — almost entirely liberal.
Can an individual be someone to emulate without believing in what Reagan called “The Man upstairs”? Of course. Yet collectively, the Democratic Party has become corrosively, bellicosely secular. The effect is a party with no moral compass or respect for fair play — note its savagery toward Brett Kavanaugh, or toward the Border Patrol at Tijuana for bravely doing its job.
It is fair to note that Trump can falsify, too. Not here. He deployed more than 2,000 National Guardsmen, nearly 6,000 active-duty military troops, and hundreds of Border Patrol agents to line the border with wire to thwart a crisis that open-borderers created —crash the U.S., no one will stop you, until Trump did. He temporarily halted a far greater crisis than Obama ever faced with a policy Obama forged — with no support from elites and facing their litany of sham.
Democratic Speaker House of the House Sam Rayburn once called President Truman “right on all the big things, wrong on most of the little ones” —eyes clear, not clouded. That’s Trump, saying a Nation without borders is not a Nation. Every American once knew that. Trump still does. Thank you, Mr. President. Now Build the Wall.
Curt Smit’s newest book, "The Presidents and the Pastime: The History of Baseball and the White House," was published this year. He is a former speechwriter to President George H. W. Bush, Associated Press “Best in New York State” radio commentator, and senior lecturer of English at the University of Rochester. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.