I've got a new piece at BNR about conservatives who are trying to invisibilize the identities of the Pulse shooting victims, and why they are doing this ugly thing:
There's a particular cruelty in refusing to acknowledge this, while simultaneously asserting that it was "an attack on our people" — when the Republican Party has been busy pushing anti-LGBT legislation in such forms as: "religious freedom" bills, which confer the right to discriminate against LGBT people; and "bathroom bills," which confer the right to discriminate against trans people in a way that puts their safety at risk; and anti-immigrant legislation, using rhetoric that demonizes Latinx people.Click through to read the whole thing.
The Republican Party's legislative approach to the LGBT and Latinx communities has specifically used an othering "Us v. Them" frame. So when [Florida Governor Rick Scott] uses phrases like "our people" and "all of us" — while refusing to acknowledge the identities of the people who were targeted because of those identities — he's playing a very contemptible game.
It's a deeply cynical ploy, and one which serves dual purposes.
First, it's a way of upholding his party's favored narrative that this attack was strictly attributable to extremist Islam, which in turn justifies their Islamophobia – and attempts to make their party's nominee for president, Donald Trump, and his "Muslim ban" look somehow reasonable.
Second, it's a way of distancing themselves from the particular hatred and bigotry their policies embody and promote.
Relatedly: Hillary Clinton gave an address earlier today in which she explicitly called the mass shooting at Pulse a hate crime.
Yet another reason that saying there's no difference between the two parties, or that "Hillary is basically a Republican," is some hot garbage.