At a private Manhattan fundraiser in 2016, then-candidate Hillary Clinton famously described Donald Trump supporters as “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic — you name it.” This was Clinton’s updated version of former President Barack Obama’s snide remark in 2008 about the people living in small-town Pennsylvania, whom he depicted as bitter folks who “cling to guns or religion or antipathy.”
Liberals are fond of making these blanket statements about Republicans and conservatives because they know if they are repeated enough times, they will stick. And they have. This characterization is now commonly accepted wisdom among the Left.
Democrats also know they will never be asked to support these claims with specifics. Evidence is not required.
But there are some who are pushing back. During a Tuesday interview with BBC reporter James Clayton, Elon Musk poured gasoline on, set fire to, and then jumped up and down on the tongue-tied journalist with football cleats after being asked a predictably biased question.
Clayton had confronted Musk about what he claimed was an increasing quantity of “hate speech” on Twitter, but the world’s second richest man quite handily turned the conversation around. Musk asked, “What hate speech are you talking about? I mean, you use Twitter. Do you see a rise in hate speech? Just a personal anecdote? I don’t.”
When Clayton said he did indeed see an increase of hate speech on the social media platform, Musk challenged him to provide an example.
Clayton replied, “Honestly, I don’t … I don’t actually use that feed [Twitter’s ‘For You’ feature] anymore because I just don’t particularly like it. And actually a lot of people are quite similar. I only look at my followers.”
Musk pressed the hapless reporter. “I’m asking for one example and you can’t give a single one. Then I say, sir, that you don’t know what you are talking about.” He added, “You cannot give me a single example of hateful content, not even one tweet. And yet you claimed that hateful content was high. That is false, you just lied.”
Clayton won’t soon forget this very public moment of utter humiliation. Hopefully, he will learn something from it and be better prepared for future interviews.
More important was the teachable moment it provided for the rest of us. Liberal journalists are great at regurgitating talking points, but beyond that, they typically lack any real understanding of the issues. They don’t have to have such an understanding because they are rarely – if ever – called upon to support their statements with evidence or valid arguments. Conservatives, on the other hand, are typically well-armed with the facts. They need to be because it’s not a level playing field.
Musk showed us an effective tool to use when dealing with the Left. Pin them down. Ask them to explain themselves. Be the 3 year old in the room who never stops asking why.
And don’t be afraid to throw a little ridicule into the mix while you’re at it. Leftists deserve to be ridiculed because their narratives have become increasingly absurd. As the late community organizer Saul Alinsky taught, “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.”
Fox News’ Sean Hannity covered Musk’s encounter with Clayton on his Wednesday night show. He noted that he’d had a similar experience with two Biden supporters who called into his radio show earlier in the week. One of the callers reportedly told him, “I hate Donald Trump.”
Hannity said he’d challenged the pair to name three things that Biden has done successfully and “they couldn’t answer.”
These people need to be held accountable for the unconsidered and inane generalities that fall off their tongues so easily. They must be called out for these broad, foolish statements, immediately and completely. They must be asked why specifically they hate Trump? Did they hate the robust economy we had pre-pandemic? The 1.4% inflation rate? The low gas prices? Were they unhappy when the U.S. was energy independent? When Russia and China stayed in their lanes? That the Trump administration enforced our immigration laws?
What do they like about Biden? Were they happy when he returned Afghanistan to Taliban rule? Are they proud of him representing the U.S. on the world stage? Are they happy that more than 5 million immigrants have entered the U.S. illegally since he took office? That 100,000 Americans die annually from drug overdoses from the fentanyl that flows into the country over our open border? That the Biden administration’s out of control spending has driven inflation to levels not seen in 40 years and brought our national debt to nearly $32 trillion?
No honest person can argue the U.S. is better off under Biden’s leadership. And it doesn’t take a genius to expose a fool; Elon showed us how easily it can be done.
Note: A previous version of this article appeared in The Washington Examiner.